Shawnee Hoover and Jay Feldman. 2004. Lessons of the West Nile Virus Response:  After five years, what have we learned? Pesticides and You. Vol. 24, No. 3, 2004

An excellent journalistic summary of the response to the 1999 outbreak of West Nile virus near New York City. A well-referenced description of the potential for the solution (adulticide spraying) to be worse than the problem (West Nile virus).

This is very relevant to the situation in the BLSG district. It would be good to find a more recent update.


Nichelle Harriott. 2016. Mosquito Control and Pollinator Health: Protecting pollinators in the age of Zika and other emerging mosquito diseases. Pesticides and You. Vol. 36, No. 2 Summer 2016

A journalistic exploration of the impacts of insecticides on pollinators. Although focused on honeybees and other pollinators, it includes very good information about malathion and pyrethroids. Cites many primary sources.


Permethrin factsheet from

A detailed description of Permethrin with lots of citations of primary sources.


Kristin Wartman. 2015. Fighting West Nile virus shouldn’t mean poisoning people. Newsweek 10/5/15.

A very well-researched news-magazine article about spraying pyrethroids and organophosphates to kill adult mosquitoes. It addresses the issue of comparing risks of rare cases of mosquito-borne disease with exposing hundreds or thousands of people to low levels of pesticides.


Mikhail A. Beketov, Ben J. Kefford, Ralf B. Schäfer, and Matthias Liess. 2013. Pesticides reduce regional biodiversity of stream invertebrates. PNAS 2013 July, 110 (27) 11039-11043.

A peer-reviewed article about the relationship between agricultural pesticide runoff and the diversity of aquatic invertebrate taxa (genera or families) in nearby streams in Europe and Australia. Agricultural runoff is known to eliminate many invertebrate species, but this is apparently the first such result at a regional level. This study does not distinguish between the direct effects of pesticides on invertebrates and the general effects of agricultural runoff (sedimentation, eutrophication, thermal modification, etc.) on streams.

This is a rigorous confirmation that industrial agricultural practices are environmentally disastrous.


New Mount Sinai Study Shows Exposure to Certain Pesticides Impacts Child Cognitive Development. Press Release, Mount Sinai School of Medicine. New York, April 21, 2011.

A press release from the institution where a study was done about the relationship between exposure to organophosphate pesticides (metabolites in urine) of pregnant women and the early development of their children (to age 6 or 9). Greater pesticide exposure was correlated with impaired perceptual reasoning, but only in children of mothers who carried a genotype associated with a less efficient version of one enzyme. Two-thirds of the mothers had the more efficient enzyme and their children showed no detrimental effects of pesticides.

So some people can tolerate more organophosphates than others. Malathion is an organophosphate, and permethrin is not.


Elizabeth Grossman. 2011. From the Fields to Inner City, Pesticides Affect Children’s IQ. Yale Environment 360. May 16, 2011.

An in-depth journalistic treatment of the relationship between organophosphate pesticide exposure and early childhood development. Mentions the Mount Sinai study (above).


The Endocrine Society. 2017. Pyrethroid pesticide exposure appears to speed puberty in boysScienceDaily. Retrieved February 25, 2018 from

A journalistic summary of a single published study of 463 boys in China. Exposure to pyrethroids (urine concentration of metabolites) was correlated with an increase of two hormones associated with puberty.

The level of exposure to pesticides for these boys was not mentioned (were they exposed to regular agricultural spraying?), and the finding was of correlation, not causation. Nonetheless, the result suggests good reason to reject claims that pyrethroids are harmless to people.