Spiral Notebook
The Frog Scientist and the EPA
by Pamela Turner
June 15, 2016
The Frog Scientist and the EPA

Way back in 2002, Dr. Tyrone Hayes, profiled in THE FROG SCIENTIST, published a scientific paper demonstrating the harmful environmental effects of atrazine, one of the most commonly used herbicides in the U.S. In response, Syngenta, the giant international company that makes atrazine, set off on a decade-long smear campaign to discredit Dr. Hayes and his work. Syngenta’s personal and professional attacks on Dr. Hayes were reported in a 2014 NEW YORKER article. Now the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has finally released a risk assessment acknowledging that atrazine may be doing serious harm to plants and animals, including mammals, birds, fish and amphibians. A report on the human health effects of atrazine is due later in 2016.

As Dr. Hayes said to MOTHER JONES magazine, “The science has been settled for a long time. Now it’s politics and economics.”

Torn Paper
About Pamela Turner

Pamela S. Turner lives in Oakland, California with her children and her husband. She has a B.A. in social science from UCAL-Irvine and a Master’s of public health from UCAL-Berkeley. She has written numerous books for young readers, including Hachiko and the Scientists in the Field titles Gorilla Doctors: Saving Endangered Great Apes, The Frog Scientist, Project Seahorse, The Dolphins of Shark Bay and her forthcoming work, Crow Smarts. Visit her website at pamelasturner.com.


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