In 1962, Rachel Carson's book Silent Spring highlighted the dangers of synthetic pesticides. Her book was so influential that DDT, previously hailed as a miracle pesticide, was eventually banned. After the ban, malaria remains an epidemic in parts of the world—even parts where DDT was not banned. So what's going on? Is Carson to blame? (Spoiler alert: The malaria-carrying mosquitos have evolved to resist pesticides, including DDT.)
In this short documentary, the Retro Report team looks back on Carson's place in environmental history—and considers various outcomes of the DDT ban.
(Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.)