Causes Of `Chemophobia'

AUTHOR: GEORGE BAGGETT, p.12 Ronald Breslow wishes to develop a cure for "chemophobia," a dread disease running rampant in college-educated Americans and often transferred to their offspring (The Scientist, March 22, 1993, page 12). As he notes, this phenomenon could have its roots in "well-publicized chemical pollution problems," but, as in the case of Pavlov's dog, continual reinforcement comes from not-so- well-publicized chemical pollution events. When rural Kansas communities received a

George Baggett
Jul 25, 1993

AUTHOR: GEORGE BAGGETT, p.12
Ronald Breslow wishes to develop a cure for "chemophobia," a dread disease running rampant in college-educated Americans and often transferred to their offspring (The Scientist, March 22, 1993, page 12). As he notes, this phenomenon could have its roots in "well-publicized chemical pollution problems," but, as in the case of Pavlov's dog, continual reinforcement comes from not-so- well-publicized chemical pollution events.

When rural Kansas communities received a notice last year from the United States Environmental Protection Agency that distributed drinking water had been found to contain unacceptable levels of vinyl chloride, concerns about a history of excess health problems in the community would not be alleviated by labeling them a symptom of "chemophobia." And with newly installed water-monitoring equipment discovering high levels of atrazine in rivers of the Midwest, the millions of people who depend on these rivers for drinking water look upon an anti- chemophobia...

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