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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Ted Turner Finds Religion But Misses Mark On Malaria

Mr. Turner, right, is apologizing to the religious for insulting religion most of his life, but partnering with churches to fight malaria. We applaud his interest but disagree with his method. Mr. Turner has chosen the politically correct route of bed nets instead of the effective route of utilizing DDT. Using heavy outdoor spraying of DDT would eliminate the mosquitos that carry the malaria parasite and after the pest is eliminated, stop the spraying. That is the way we eliminated malaria in the United States and is a very good model for eliminating malaria in the region where is is needlessly killing the most people: Africa.

The disease kills more than 1 million people a year — mostly women and children under the age of 5 in Sub-Saharan Africa Traditional environmental groups are more concerned about the health of birds than the lives of African children and have used their multibillion-dollar international might to crush the effective use of DDT to permanently solve this problem. All bird populations threatened by the use of DDT in America recovered after its use stopped.

Turner's United Nations Foundation, which he started in 1997 with a $1 billion donation, launched a $200 million anti-malaria project with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and the United Methodist Church. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation also provided a $10 million grant that will help promote the campaign in churches. Turner's foundation is working with the Nothing But Nets campaign, which provides insecticide-treated bed nets in needy communities. Instead of wasting hundreds of millions of dollars on ineffective bed nets, several million dollars worth of DDT should be utilized to solve this problem. AAEA would be happy to make these arrangements.

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