We at Tipping Point, through our work on our From Pink to Prevention campaign, are proud to be marking the birthday of an extraordinary woman –the citizen/scientist Rachel Carson.
In the words of our colleague Diana Ward:
Rachel Carson was an outstanding communicator and translator of science into everyday language. Although her research-based facts and discoveries were familiar to others working in the same research field, it was only when they were published in easily read book form that they first reached the public consciousness.
Here for all to read and understand was shocking scientific evidence of harm to every form of life from the widespread use and persistent presence of manmade chemicals in the environment. Her book, published in 1962, ‘Silent Spring’ was, and still is, a stark wake-up call to the irreversible consequences for all living organisms, as well as to the extreme risks from the multiplier effects of such toxic chemicals for humans at the top of the food chain.
In the bigger picture drawn by Carson, her emphasis on risks to human health from the use and release into the environment of manmade chemical compounds has yet to be acknowledged and incorporated in preventive health research programming of cancer research organisations and charities.
As long as this situation is allowed to continue, public awareness of the scientifically proven links between risks to health and muliple everyday exposures to synthetic chemicals, will remain lost to view.
In terms of significance for human health, the existing disconnect between the role of environmentally introduced chemicals in human diseases and conditions is on a par with climate change. Together they constitute the major 21st century challenge that must be confronted and resolved by the application of scientific knowledge for the benefit and not the destruction of life.Di Ward – Campaigner From Pink to Prevention and
lead author Breast Cancer: an environmental disease. The case for Primary Prevention,
UK Working Group on Breast Cancer 2005
Our work at From Pink to Preventionis to keep asking The Big Questionof all those individuals, organisations and institutions with the power to make or to influence decisions on breast cancer incidence in particular WHY they persist in refusing to acknowledge the role of environmental and occupational toxicants and WHY they persist in ignoring decades of evidence up to the present day – from organisations such as World Health Organisation and the EU and other respected scientific bodies – on which the link between our lifelong (womb to grave) exposures to toxic chemicals and substances and the escalating incidence of breast cancer, among many other diseases, is based.
Rachel Carson would be asking the same questions. She died at the age of 56, from breast cancer, just 2 years after the publication of Silent Spring. We are forever in her debt.
Read more: The Power of Words – why a book from 1962 inspires our work today; and Rachel Carson: in print, in film and why her legacy is of such scale.
Deb, Helen and Diana
From Pink to Prevention campaigns team
Join @pink_prevention in following the example set by #RachelCarsonDay to speak up about the harm to human health posed by chemicals + to get key players to take action. #NoMoreSilentSpring
If you are concerned or want to take action on this issue, please sign our petition at