women and life on earth bookshelf

Environmental health

Living Downstream
A Scientist's Personal Investigation of Cancer and the Environment

Sandra Steingraber

Vintage Books, New York 1997
374p. $14.00 ISBN 0-375-70099-4 Pb

Sandra Steingraber is a biologist and poet who presents and explains scientific data in a way that educates and moves the reader - hopefully to action. A cancer survivor herself, she explains the multiple and inter-related threats to our health coming from a variety of sources: incinerators, agricultural chemicals, production of hundreds - thousands - of chemicals that alone or in combination can cause cancers, birth defects, sterility, permanent genetic change. She argues for the Precautionary Principle: "When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically. In this context, the proponent of an activity, rather than the public, should bear the burden of proof." Beautifully presented and written, this book should be read by all who inhabit and care about the earth. Find out more about Sandra Steingraber's work at her site:


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