Profile America — Friday, April 13th. One of the most influential books of the last century was published on this date 50 years ago — Rachel Carson's "Silent Spring." The book, which warned of the dangers of indiscriminate use of chemical pesticides, was immensely popular but controversial in some quarters. Its themes were that all species on earth exist in an interrelated way, and that not enough was known about the long-term effects of pesticide use. The impact of Carson's book led to the banning of the use of DDT in the U.S. and helped form the movement to protect the environment. Today, farmers across the country use $11.5 billion worth of pesticides each year to protect their crops. You can find these and more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau, online at www.census.gov.
Sources: Chase's Calendar of Events 2012, p. 216 Statistical Abstract of the United States 2012, t. 841
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