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Posted Fri Jan 8 2010: from Nature:
Oceans release DDT from decades ago
A computer simulation of the environmental fate of DDT (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane) has revealed that substantial quantities of the pesticide are still being released from the world's oceans, despite widespread restrictions on its use during the 1970s. The calculations show that although remaining DDT use today tends to be in the southern hemisphere, its concentrations are actually growing in the northern hemisphere as it moves through the world's oceans and atmosphere. An estimated 1.5 million tonnes of DDT were used worldwide between the 1940s and 1970s, both as an agricultural insecticide and to control disease-carrying insects such as mosquitoes – the chemical was a key weapon in the war against malaria, for example. But DDT is toxic to a wide range of aquatic life, and its eggshell-thinning effects also had a drastic impact on many bird species.
[Read more stories about: contamination, ecosystem interrelationships, toxic buildup, unintended consequences]

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'Doc Jim says:
Dang oceans! Can't they just hold onto the stuff?

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