DDT is an abbreviation used for dichloro-trichloroethane, a controversial organic compound in the recent times. It is an effective insecticide, but its high toxicity levels are harmful to other living organisms. For this reason, it has been banned in many nations including United States of America. Although it is banned, it is used legally or illegally in various locations. Scientific debates as to whether it should be banned entirely have been prevalent among many scientists and scholars for decades. Rachel Carson, a renowned environmentalist, strongly criticized the use of DDT as an insecticide (wwendt1, Oct 21, 2007). Many people wonder whether DDT should be banned worldwide.
Yes, it should be eradicated. The compound is not soluble in water. However, it can dissolve in organic solvents, such as fats and oils (Lallanilla). If this happens, the chemical accumulates in the tissues of all animals that have been exposed to it. The build-up of this chemical in animal’s bodies is referred to as bioaccumulation. Through bioaccumulation, the chemical is stored retained through the food chain and absorbed by preys. If human beings feed on meat from exposed animals, they absorb the compound which has massive negative effects to their bodies.
DDT can cause numerous diseases in a human body. It can cause liver damage including liver cancer, birth defects, reproductive complications, as well as breakdown of the nervous system. In birds, the compound blocks calcium absorption, which in turn causes them to lay imperfect eggs, which have thin shells. These eggs then break before they are fully formed (Our mission and history). The species of birds affected by this compound may thus find itself at the blink of extinction. DDT pollutants cause reproductive ailments to the wildlife populations. If the animals are exposed for a long time, they may eventually die or become extinct.
Global warming has caused Antarctic ice to melt releasing toxic compounds, such as DDT, which were previously trapped in the ice. These compounds have found their way into organisms such as penguins affecting their body metabolism (Stemp-Morlock, 2008). Over 170 countries were represented in Stockholm Convention, where they agreed on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) treaty in year 2004 (Lallanilla). The treaty was against the use of DDT chemicals as insecticides. However, some countries still use DDT compounds as insecticides to control insects such as mosquitoes during Malaria outbreaks. The numerous detriments of using DDTs should be voiced internationally to point out the need to eradicate the compound entirely.