Another alarming climate myth bites the dust – mosquito borne malaria does NOT increase with temperature

This is an Aedes albopictus female mosquito ob...

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Back in 2001, the University of Florida wrote one of those “science by press release” thingy’s in Eurekalert where they speculated that global warming would increase ranges, and thus the range of mosquito borne disease.

The next year, NPR jumped into the fray with Is Global Warming Nurturing Parasites?

In 2006 it was Warming Trend May Contribute To Malaria’s Rise in Science Daily

In 2009 Gore gets bitten again by another factual blunder getting all worked up about mosquitoes in Nairobi.

Joltin Joe Romm and NYT’s Andrew Revkin agreed last year that:

The climate blogger Joe Romm and I agree (breaking news): Scientific research and assessments examining the link between human-driven climate change and malaria exposure have, for the most part, accurately gauged and conveyed the nature of the risk that warming could swell the ranks of people afflicted with this awful mosquito-borne disease.

Also in 2010, Indur Goklany did a WUWT guest post Smacking Down Malaria Misconceptions as well as this guest post from Dr. Pat Michaels where clearly the malaria data just doesn’t add up in Peer reviewed whack a mozzie.

I’m happy to report both Romm and Revkin are wronger than wrong, and the whole AGW to malaria link has just been shot down, in Nature no less, by a Penn State study. It may also be time to revist this WUWT post: Mann’s 1.8 million Malaria grant – “where do we ask for a refund’? since he didn’t contribute to this new study.

Here’s excerpts from the story in Nature:

Global warming wilts malaria

Transmission of infectious parasites slows with rising temperatures, researchers find.

by Zoë Corbyn

A common assumption is that rising global temperatures will increase the spread of malaria — the deadly mosquito-borne disease that affects millions of people worldwide. But a study out today in Biology Letters finds that warmer temperatures seem to slow transmission of malaria-causing parasites, by reducing their infectiousness.

The study was done with rodent malaria, but the researchers, at Pennsylvania State University in University Park, expect the pattern to apply to human malaria and possibly to other mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue fever and West Nile virus.

Studies predicting that warmer climates will increase malaria infections commonly assume that the disease-causing parasites will develop faster and that the ability of the mosquito to acquire, maintain and transmit the pathogen will remain constant. They conclude that as temperature rises, mosquitoes become infectious quicker and therefore malaria transmission increases.

But the latest study shows that temperature has a more complex effect. As temperature rises, parasites do develop faster, but fewer of them become infectious.

“It is a trade-off between parasite development and parasite survival,” says Krijn Paaijmans, an entomologist and study author. “And if you don’t factor this in I think you come to the wrong conclusions.”

To tease out the factors involved, Paaijmans and his colleagues incubated mosquitoes infected with Plasmodium yoelii, which causes rodent malaria, at 20, 22, 24 and 26 degrees Celsius for 5–14 days. The researchers then examined the salivary glands of the mosquitoes — where the parasite travels when it is mature — and found that the parasite developed more quickly in warmer temperatures. But they also found fewer sporozoites — the infectious form of the parasite — indicating that the mosquitoes were less infectious at higher temperatures.

==============================================================

Full story here

Will Romm finally shut up about mosquitoes and malaria now? Will Revkin write a story correcting his previous ones? Will Mike Mann give back the 1.8 million dollars?

UPDATE: In comments, Andrew Revkin disputes that he was “wrong” on malaria per the quote I cited from the Climate Progress article. He now points to his 2010 article: The science linking warming and malaria risk was always iffy‘ He says he was taken out of context and that his quote was poor word construct. – Anthony

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91 Responses to Another alarming climate myth bites the dust – mosquito borne malaria does NOT increase with temperature

  1. Rhoda Ramirez says:

    Three ending questions and I suspect the answer is “No” to all of them.

  2. Leon Brozyna says:

    And from Penn State no less !!

    There they go … mucking up a good story with all those inconvenient facts. Epidemiology, like the climate, is no simple matter.

  3. roh234 says:

    I’m suprised that Nature has turned from its climate Orthadoxy . This is good news, atleast its 1 less (fallacious) point the fraudsters have to make in swaying the public opnion to their scam.

  4. Reed Coray says:

    Does this mean the “team” will try to get the editor of NATURE fired? Inquiring minds want to know.

  5. Rhoda Ramirez says:

    The findings of the study are interesting. I’ve always assumed that the major plagues of the late middle ages on through the colonial period were so devastating because the enviromental conditions resulted in a lower quality of life. This study seems to indicate that the infection agent itself may have been more infections at lower overall conditions.

  6. JDN says:

    Isn’t it getting cooler the last 10 years? Where is my malaria surge?

    Bengal appears to have the highest incidence of malaria in India, and, the temperatures hit well over 100F, which is well outside the temperature range of this paper. This research may only be relevant to spring in the U.S.A. So, I wouldn’t go demanding apologies with this scant data.

  7. wayne says:

    Would this qualify for the FAIL files?

  8. markus says:

    This is reported here from the Australian Climate Commissioner, only a month ago.
    http://climatecommission.gov.au/wp-content/uploads/key-messages_FINAL-FOR-WEB1.pdf

    “”3. As the climate changes, infectious diseases will rise.
    › The expected rise in some infectious diseases associated with increasing temperatures,
    changes in rainfall, and more intense extreme weather events is of serious concern.
    › dengue fever is currently confined to northern Queensland. As north-eastern Australia
    becomes hotter and wetter the range of the mosquito that spreads dengue fever is projected
    to move south. A southward spread could put five to eight million Australians at risk by the
    end of the century, 10–16 times the population that is currently at risk.
    › As average temperature continues to rise across Australia the incidence of bacterial food-borne diseases will also rise. The more vulnerable members of the community will be hardest hit
    by climate change-related illness.
    › The more vulnerable members of the community—the elderly, the young, those with
    chronic illness, those in lower socio-economic groups and indigenous communities—are
    especially at risk.
    › more frequent and more extreme bushfires, droughts and floods will increasingly affect
    physical wellbeing, mental health and incomes of rural Australians.””
    ——————————————————————————
    I have refereed their media coordinator to this new study and asked that the report be formally corrected. No doubt it will be a long time coming. My persistence will allow this little mossie to suck some blood.

  9. MrX says:

    This should maybe go in climate fail files for reference. The whole malaria thing keeps coming up again and again. Or at least it did in the past. It’d be nice to have a quick reference to this. Other alarmist myths should go in the climate fail files too. Weren’t there several posts in the past about melting ice on mountains.

  10. John says:

    Once in a while, a good piece of science will still slip into Nature. Mann and Jones and company don’t dare try to get the editor fired there…..

  11. Brian H says:

    The “backing away slowly” has begun?

    As for malaria, you need: 1) lotsa skeeters (any standing water for breeding will assure this); 2) available food.

    Which is why historically, e.g., Siberia had major outbreaks. Etc.

  12. Nick Stokes says:

    “Will Mike Mann give back the 1.8 million dollars?”

    That would be premature. Mann did not get the grant – Matthew Thomas did. Mann was one of four co-investigators. And Matthew Thomas was one of the co-authors of this paper, which was written under that very same grant:
    Paaijmans, K.P., Blanford, S., Chan, B.K. & Thomas, M.B. (accepted).Warmer temperatures reduce the vectorial capacity of malaria mosquitoes. Biology Letters.

  13. James Sexton says:

    How many times do peer-reviewed studies have to show what we all know, need to be published before the maniacs STFU about malaria and global warming!??!!??? Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad these guys engaged, but, on my unplugged 3-generations-ago-computer I have two papers that clearly state there is no connection. And, if memory serves me correctly, a comment in Lancet, from a team of people that actually know about infectious diseases, absolutely, emphatically, under no uncertain circumstances, does malaria have any connection with global warming. Are these people braindead? Why is it so important to these people that malaria be connected to global warming? Personally, I would have gone with dysentery, but that’s as easily dismissed as well. But, honestly, what part about the historical malaria outbreaks in Siberia and Alaska do they not understand?

    The people arguing that malaria is tied to global warming are the reason why people give the argument of eugenics merit.

  14. Andrew says:

    Its funny how the Pro AGW people tend to be outspoken proponents of population control, and the Anti AGW people typically take the opposite view. Al Gore and Bjørn Lomborg come to mind as fairly vocal proponents of their respective beliefs.

    Since the modern day Green Progressive’s are direct philosophical decedents of the Progressives of the 1920’s and 1930’s, advocating population control should not come as a big surprise to people. At least the people that have take the time to inform themselves about the subject…I think.

    Andrew

  15. ChrisM says:

    From the pedant in me, you may wish to correct the spelling of borne in your headline. Though the way it reads at present gives it a very interesting meaning

  16. Graeme says:

    Will the IPCC include this research in their next report?

  17. Graeme says:

    James Sexton says:
    December 20, 2011 at 8:34 pm

    How many times do peer-reviewed studies have to show what we all know, need to be published before the maniacs STFU about malaria and global warming!??!!???

    People in the grip of a cultish fundamentalist belief system usually don’t “give up” they can only be deprogrammed, or absolutely shocked out of their belief when their messiah figures are caught doing something especially dispicable to them or someone they truly care about.

    Due to lack of personal interaction between the core believers and their prophets (Gore, Hanson, Mann, et al) it’s only deprogamming that will work.

    Where AGW has lost “believers” is from the ranks that were not fundamentalist to begin with – such as myself (woke up in 2008).

    So no STFU’ing on the horizon – this is a long march fight.

  18. WOOT. WOOT. WOOT.

    Now that I have your attention, consider the trivial “borne” vs “born” in the title. ;-)

    [REPLY: Happy Now? -REP]

  19. Dr. Dave says:

    There have been several excellent articles about malaria here at WUWT. What’s important to remember is that humans are the reservoir of the Plasmodia that cause malaria in humans. Wanna get rid of malaria in your neighborhood? Get rid of humans infected with the disease. I don’t mean get rid of the humans, per se, just get rid of the disease. Mosquitoes are only the insect vectors for transmission of the disease. Because we have seen severe outbreaks of malaria close to the arctic circle should be a tip off that the insect vectors are only one part of the equation. The trick is to break the chain. Reduce the prevalence of the insect vectors (e.g. DDT), treat and/or isolate infected individuals and pretty soon you no longer have malaria. Most of the US was malarious just 150 years ago (before global warming started). A lot of things changed in the US (and Europe). We moved indoors, we invented screens, we discovered the cinchona alkaloids (i.e. quinine and derivatives) and eventually we developed very effective pesticides. No more malaria in North America and most of Europe. EVERYBODY has mosquitoes (almost), but if you don’t have a population actively infected with malaria you’re unlikely to become a malarious region. Mosquitoes are only the vector…humans carry the disease.

  20. David Eyles says:

    Right up until the 1890s, malaria was endemic in the Essex and Kent marshes (low lying areas on opposite sides of the Thames Estuary). That was at the end of the period that we now know as the Little Ice Age. Warming and drainage of the marshes in the early 20th Century finished the malaria off.

  21. David Stern says:

    This study is interesting but it was done with rodent malaria etc. The main point is that malaria hasn’t increased with increased temperatures:

    http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0024524

    I’d assumed this was because of successful interventions. It’s interesting that there may be more to the story.

  22. schnurrp says:

    Those danged complexities!

  23. Neil Jones says:

    I assume that’s now in the “FAIL” file

  24. Dennis Nikols, P. Geo says:

    To answer your questions probably not. This is not and never was about science in the first place so whey would anyone expect behavioral changes in these people.

  25. Nigel S says:

    David Eyles says:
    December 20, 2011 at 10:26 pm

    Re: UK malaria

    A bit more recent than early 20th Century (last UK case was 1952 on the Isle of Sheppey) but as Dr Harbach (quoted in the Daily Telegraph) confirmed the mosquitoes were just the vectors.

    ‘Dr Ralph Harbach, of the Natural History Museum in London, said that there could not be an outbreak of malaria unless someone in the island already suffering from the disease were bitten by a mosquito that then bit other people.
    He said: “This is how the man died in 1952. Soldiers coming home from foreign countries were bringing malaria into Britain. The mosquitoes were passing it on to others from them.”‘

  26. Geckko says:

    When pigs fly, when hell freezes over and no.

  27. Skiphil says:

    We can be assured and relieved that CAGW fanatics will devote just as much energy to spreading “good news” like this as they did to spreading alarmist news when they thought that the “malarial mosquitoes hypothesis” served their agenda. (sarcasm alert)

  28. Eric Worrall says:

    Malaria was endemic in Northern Russia and Siberia, during the Little Ice Age.
    http://climateaudit.org/2005/08/30/mosquitos-malaria-and-the-ipcc-consensus/

    Suggesting Malaria is a tropical disease is pure hokum. The only reason we dont face Malaria epidemics on the same scale as the tropics does, is many of the swamps in developed countries, where the Mosquitoes used to breed, got drained, paved over, and sold as housing estates.

    We also fought a successful battle to eradicate Malaria mosquitoes, with techniques ranging from the 19th century method, of covering swamps in a thin layer of Castor Oil, to spraying infested areas with chemicals like DDT.

    Of course, when Africa started using DDT, we banned it.

    Of all the crimes against humanity committed by 20th century Environmentalists, history may judge their worst crime to be the murder of millions of Africans, by depriving them of the means to control Malaria.

  29. Kev-in-UK says:

    Off topic – but in the same vein – here is a story from the BBC where trees are dying but amazingly not declared due to climate change!!
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-16270759

  30. Manu says:

    Interesting article, although as David Stern already pointed out the study in question was performed with rodent malaria. I imagine that it is pretty safe to assume that ‘human’ malaria acts in the same way to temperature changes, but it would it unscientific to state that the issue has been ‘settled’ without direct experimental evidence, would it not…?

  31. Nick Stokes says:

    Eric Worrall says: December 20, 2011 at 11:49 pm
    “Of all the crimes against humanity committed by 20th century Environmentalists, history may judge their worst crime to be the murder of millions of Africans, by depriving them of the means to control Malaria.”

    That isn’t true. DDT use for malaria control was never banned by the Stockholm Convention, and continued in Africa (and India and S Am) throughout. Its use diminished because of insect resistance. Here is a recent Stockholm Convention report on the current and planned use of DDT.

  32. Al Gored says:

    Once again, a simplistic AGW poster story skewered by the complexity of its details. This does explode the standard myth but these details suggest that this isn’t THE simplistic ‘answer’ to it either. It is just one paper on just one species.

    In the meantime, good news for rodents worried about the relentless warming.

  33. richard verney says:

    Didn’t Paul Reiter resign from the IPCC over this issue?

    Paul Reiter is an expert in malaria and he is of the view that malaria thrives in cold conditions and the IPCC misrepresents the case that warming would lead to an increase in malaria. I am sure that Paul Reiter will welcome this latest paper vindicating his position.

  34. richard verney says:

    Further to my last post, the language of which was a bit sloppy. I understand that Professor Reiter holds the view that malaria is not a tropical disease and that malaria carrying mosquitos can thrive in cold climates and since it is not a tropical disease warming per se will not inevitably lead to an increase in malaria. .

  35. dangerous sheep says:

    I wonder if the University of East Anglia will remember that until the middle of the nineteenth century their part of England was notorious for malaria. This period was the same as the little ice age when lakes, rivers and canals in the area regulary froze over and the whole region was famous for winter skating.

  36. wayne Job says:

    Interesting article that makes a mockery of the alarmist non sense. I have but one problem mankind carries a disease and mozzies can spread it to other people.

    This gives mozzies a bad rap, around every third generation after being vegetarian and living on plant sap, the females of the species become vampires. They need a blood diet to breed successfully , the easiest target is a naked ape, thus we are stricken by attacks of female vampire mozzies.

    They are doing what is necessary for their survival . This should in no way be identified with female behaviour in general, and innuendo and sarcasm in that direction should be disregarded.

    This study proves only that mozzies are doing what they do naturally, and AGW does not bother mozzies in the slightest. From the arctic to the tropics and to the netherworld of the antipodes they prosper.

  37. davidmhoffer says:

    Seems to me this isn’t quite a slam dunk. They only studied half the equation.

    What happens to the development and transmission of the disease from the host side? Does it develop in rodents/humans faster or slower, and is it more transmissable (is that a word?), in those exact same temperature ranges? Would the overall rate of infection not be subject to both factors? If one goes down, but the other up….

    Mods ~ since the transmissable sporozoites are BORN in the gut of the mosquito, the correct spelling in this case for the article title would be BORN, not BORNE. Please change it back :-)

  38. Rob says:

    In climate science studies the opposite of everything is true.

  39. Jimbo says:

    This myth died a long time ago. Where is Al Gore when you need him?

    One of the worst outbreaks of Malaria occurred in Russia / Siberia.

    Global malaria has been on the decrease during the hottest years on the record. It’s worse than we thought!
    http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature09098
    http://dx.doi.org/10.1504/IJGW.2011.038371

    “…..sometimes common throughout Europe as far north as the Baltic and northern Russia….
    In fact, the most catastrophic epidemic on record anywhere in the world occurred in the Soviet Union in the 1920s, with a peak incidence of 13 million cases per year, and 600,000 deaths. Transmission was high in many parts of Siberia, and there were 30,000 cases and 10,000 deaths due to falciparum infection (the most deadly malaria parasite) in Archangel, close to the Arctic circle. Malaria persisted in many parts of Europe until the advent of DDT.”
    Professor Paul Reiter, Institut Pasteur
    http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld200506/ldselect/ldeconaf/12/12we21.htm

    I could go on with Malaria in England in the Little Ice Age, past, devastating malaria outbreaks in Finland, Norway, Canada but I think this is enough. ;O)

  40. Jimbo says:

    When was the Little Ice Age? How cold was Finland?

    “A total of 1,803 persons died of malaria in the western parts of Finland and in the south-western archipelago during the years 1751–1773 [23]. Haartman [21] reports severe epidemics in the region of Turku in the years 1774–1777 and the physician F.W. Radloff mentioned that malaria was very common in the Aland Islands in 1795 [39].”
    Huldén et al – 2005 Malaria Journal
    http://www.malariajournal.com/content/4/1/19

    Brrrrr! Why does Malaria like the cold so much?
    http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/esa/jme/1986/00000023/00000001/art00009
    http://www.malariajournal.com/content/7/S1/S3/.%20HTTP://.%20HTTP://WWW.MARA.ORG.ZA

  41. Sleepalot says:

    “David Eyles says:
    December 20, 2011 at 10:26 pm

    Right up until the 1890s, malaria was endemic in the Essex and Kent marshes (low lying areas on opposite sides of the Thames Estuary). That was at the end of the period that we now know as the Little Ice Age. Warming and drainage of the marshes in the early 20th Century finished the malaria off.”

    Hence the call to restore wetlands.

  42. chuck nolan says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    December 21, 2011 at 1:21 am
    That isn’t true. DDT use for malaria control was never banned by the Stockholm Convention, and continued in Africa (and India and S Am) throughout. Its use diminished because of insect resistance. Here is a recent Stockholm Convention report on the current and planned use of DDT.
    ————————————————–

    EDITORIAL

    Bring Back DDT, and Science With It!

    By Marjorie Mazel Hecht

    (Full text of Editorial from Summer 2002 issue
    http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/articles/summ02/DDT.html & http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/articles/summ02/Carson.html)

    “The U.S. decision had a rapid effect in the developing sector, where the State Department made U.S. aid contingent on countries not using any pesticide that was banned in the United States. The U.S. Agency for International Development discontinued its support for DDT spraying programs, and instead increased funding for birth control programs.
    ————–
    So, my understanding is that EPA administrator William Ruckelshaus made the decision to ban DDT and in every country where it was banned more people died from malaria.

  43. manny says:

    Between 1826 and 1832, some 1,000 workers died of malaria while building the Rideau canal between Ottawa and Montreal, in frigid Canada. There is no malaria any more in tropical Florida. The link between malaria and climate was wrong from the start.

  44. If Anthony had actually read the Dot Earth post he snipped from he would have seen that I was crediting Romm for acknowledging that the peer-reviewed literature did NOT point to a broadening of malaria risk. And he might have clicked on the link to the previous week’s piece that said:

    Cooling Fear of a Malaria Surge from Warming.

    As various arguments for action on global warming have failed to blunt growth in emissions in recent years, environmental groups and international agencies have sometimes tried to turn the focus to diseases that could pose a growing threat in a warming world — with malaria being a frequent talking point.

    It shouldn’t be. The science linking warming and malaria risk was always iffy, a reality reflected in the relevant sections of the 2007 reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Modeling studies cited there had variegated results, and many focused only on the potential expansion of the geographical range or mosquito-friendly seasons, while not considering how shifting patterns of health care and human behavior might render such changes moot….

    http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/05/20/cooling-fear-of-a-malaria-surge-from-warming/

    Who needs to post a correction??

  45. polistra says:

    Sometimes I wonder if abstract and specialized education, or just too much education, is a prime cause of these insane pseudoscience cults.

    An unspecialized learner is likely to have some random facts about mosquitoes in his mind, such as the famously gigantic Alaskan mosquitoes, or the malarial swamps of Northern Ohio that caused Americans to call malaria “Maumee Fever” for many years. These facts would prevent him from assuming that skeeters need tropical warmth, or that malaria needs tropical warmth.

  46. Smokey says:

    Well, I guess Michael Mann can return that $1.8 million payola grant to study mosquito vectors. It should have gone to a biologist or epidemiologist anyway. And it would have, if it were not simply payola to keep Mann in line following Climategate 1.0.

  47. beng says:

    Mosquito borne diseases depend on them having suitable habitats, NOT TEMPERATURE — namely stagnant, isolated water. They occur from the tropics to the Arctic.

    How many times does this need repeating?

  48. Nick Stokes says:

    Smokey says: December 21, 2011 at 5:39 am
    “Well, I guess Michael Mann can return that $1.8 million payola grant to study mosquito vectors. It should have gone to a biologist or epidemiologist anyway.”

    It did go to a biologist – Matthew Thomas, principal investigator under the grant, and co-author of this paper. Mann was a co-investigator. The paper described in this post was funded by “Mann’s 1.8 million Malaria grant”.

  49. Smokey says:

    Nick Stokes,

    Thomas “said that the malaria map published in Nature shows that in some areas of Latin America, South and South-East Asia, and Sub-Saharan Africa, malaria will in fact increase with global warming.” [source]

    As we see fro the comments here, “global warming” has no discernable effect on malaria, which occurs in all temperature ranges. But don’t let facts get in the way of your belief system.

  50. ozspeaksup says:

    http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2011-387

    heres another example of
    its worse its worse, panic panic woe is us.

  51. gnomish says:

    ha ha – andy demands a correction.
    oh, oh, oh! he’s better at comedy than science, for sure.

  52. Dave Springer says:

    “Will Romm finally shut up about mosquitoes and malaria now? Will Revkin write a story correcting his previous ones? Will Mike Mann give back the 1.8 million dollars?”

    No. This is no indictment at all of the hypothetical increase in the range of the *human* malaria parasite P.falciparum.

    First of all a different species of parasite that infects rodents was studied. There is a notorious lack of crossover between rodents and humans in areas like this. If every potential drug that worked wonders in lab rats worked equally well in humans it wouldn’t take ten years to get a new drug to market and we’d have a whole lot more great drugs in our pharmaceutical war against disease arsenal

    Secondly the study was done in the wrong range of temperatures. P.falciparum has a limited latitudinal range because it can’t survive for long in temperatures below about 45F so it dies in the winter in many regions unless the mosquito where it is obliged to spend part of its life cycle is sheltered from the cold. This would happen often in human dwellings in the past which is why it was a problem in northern climates in the past. Trade by ship between the tropics and temperate zones would also ensure that the parasite had a way to be reintroduced in northern areas during the summer months.

    It’s almost a dead certainty that P.falciparum will extend its natural range should conducive warming come about.

  53. DirkH says:

    Andy Revkin (@Revkin) says:
    December 21, 2011 at 5:19 am
    “Cooling Fear of a Malaria Surge from Warming.”

    Wow. Backpedaling at the CAGW cultists.
    Five stages of Death: Bargaining.

  54. DirkH says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    December 21, 2011 at 1:21 am
    “That isn’t true. DDT use for malaria control was never banned by the Stockholm Convention, and continued in Africa (and India and S Am) throughout. Its use diminished because of insect resistance. Here is a recent Stockholm Convention report on the current and planned use of DDT.”

    Your link points to this WUWT post, not to the Stockholm convention.

    UNEP pressures countries into stopping DDT use, violating the spirit of the Stockholm convention.
    http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/223191.php

    You can always count on the UN when it’s about depopulating the planet.

  55. NoAstronomer says:

    This study is obviously from the Duh! File. Just a quick glance at a map of malarial regions would show that there’s no correlation between temperature and malaria.

  56. K Denison says:

    @AndyRevkin

    Mr. Revkin, while the post you linked speaks to the iffy link between warming and the spread of malaria, it uses the argument that warming increases the transmission dynamics but these are overcome by mitigation efforts. The article that is the subject of this post clearly shows that warming may actually decrease the transmission dynamics.

    So even if your post in 2010 came to the right conclusion, it was for the wrong reasons and was based on an incorrect assumption, namely that the transmission dynamics would increase.

    Would be nice to see a post that admits that the transmission dynamics may decrease with warming as this study shows.

    KD

  57. Dave Springer says:

    Andy Revkin (@Revkin) says:
    December 21, 2011 at 5:19 am
    “The science linking warming and malaria risk was always iffy, a reality reflected in the relevant sections of the 2007 reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Modeling studies cited there had variegated results, and many focused only on the potential expansion of the geographical range or mosquito-friendly seasons, while not considering how shifting patterns of health care and human behavior might render such changes moot….”

    My emphasis. That’s why I was careful to say it was the parasite’s *natural* range that would extend if conducive warming occurred. It’s unnatural range is a different matter. It was unnaturally extended far into temperate climate zones with the unwitting aid of humans and it was purposely forced out of some marginal zones through human eradication efforts as well. But none of this changes the fact that it cannot survive where winter temperature routinely falls below 45F for extended periods of time. The south eastern US is a marginal zone, for instance, and so armed with a little knowledge and a whole lot of DDT it was essentially driven completely out of the US and has failed to regain a foothold.

  58. Dave Springer says:

    http://www.parasitesandvectors.com/content/pdf/1756-3305-4-92.pdf

    Above is a link to a temperature dependence study of P.falciparum and P.vivax which are the only malaria parasites of concern to humans with the former being the most virulent and least able to tolerate cold temperatures.

    Global maps are produced which illustrate with shading the average number of “infectious days” there are in any particular climate zone. Above the northern US border it’s essentially nil for the more virulent strain and increases to 365 days only in the southernmost tip of Florida. The key is that temperature must remain above a certain point long enough for the parasite to complete that portion of its life cycle that is outside the human host. It’s probably in the article somewhere but I recall that temperature is 65F for P.falciparum and the length of time is about 7 days but that’s not written in granite as individual parasites through natural genetic variability have more or less sensitivity to low temperatures. Thus if the parasite is somehow introduced into a region where it cannot survive over the winter (such as most of the United States) it can become a problem or if there happens to be a warm wet basement somewhere where mosquitos can breed year-round…

  59. ferd berple says:

    Eric Worrall says:
    December 20, 2011 at 11:49 pm
    Of all the crimes against humanity committed by 20th century Environmentalists, history may judge their worst crime to be the murder of millions of Africans, by depriving them of the means to control Malaria.

    The 21st century Environmentalists now wish to deprive Africans of the right to industrialize, by depriving them of cheap energy (Coal). This enforced poverty will kill more African’s than the ban on DDT.

    The industrialized world was built on Coal. It is cheap, plentiful, and found almost everywhere. Environmentalists consider coal the equivalent of death (Hansen’s death trains). Yet, most of us alive today would not be here if it wasn’t for the advances made possible through coal.

    Without industrialization, the earth’s human population would be only a fraction of what it is today. High birth rates would be the norm because children would routinely die before reaching maturity. Most of our time would be spent working the fields, as the most abundant form of cheap energy would be human beings.

    Humans are low cost forms of energy. They feed and repair themselves, and any surplus work you can get from them is profit. Coal and oil displaced humans as a source of energy largely because it was so cheap as to be competitive.

  60. Glacierman says:

    @Andy Revkin:

    Andy, is this quote from ThinkProgress in 2010 correct?

    “The climate blogger Joe Romm and I agree (breaking news): Scientific research and assessments examining the link between human-driven climate change and malaria exposure have, for the most part, accurately gauged and conveyed the nature of the risk that warming could swell the ranks of people afflicted with this awful mosquito-borne disease.”

    If not, will you ask Joe Romm for a correction?

  61. ferd berple says:

    Dave Springer says:
    December 21, 2011 at 6:36 am
    it can’t survive for long in temperatures below about 45F

    manny says:
    December 21, 2011 at 4:40 am
    Between 1826 and 1832, some 1,000 workers died of malaria while building the Rideau canal between Ottawa and Montreal, in frigid Canada. There is no malaria any more in tropical Florida. The link between malaria and climate was wrong from the start.

    Anyone that has visited Canada in the summer knows that mosquitoes have no problem surviving cold winters. Infected Humans are the cause of malaria, because without treatment the disease survives for years in the human host, unless it kills the host.

    If higher temperatures increased infection rates, mammals would not increase their own body temperature during times of infection, as they would be killing themselves. Over time, those individuals would be weeded out by natural selection.

    If anything, increased body temperature in mammals during infections argues that increased temperatures reduce infection rates and thereby allows more individuals to survive.

  62. Andrew says:

    chuck nolan says:
    December 21, 2011 at 4:39 am

    “EDITORIAL

    Bring Back DDT, and Science With It
    By Marjorie Mazel Hecht”

    While I would agree with some of the points made in that article, but I would be careful quoting from a publication started by Lyndon LaRouche, but that’s just me…

  63. John F. Hultquist says:

    Eric Worrall says:
    December 20, 2011 at 11:49 pm
    “We also fought a successful battle to eradicate Malaria mosquitoes, ”

    With just a quick look, I didn’t find historical references for “covering swamps in a thin layer of Castor Oil” – but as a horse owner with watering troughs I am advised to use just about any oil (corn, motor, others) to kill larva. While I did not find the sort of story I went looking for I did find a story about yellow fever in Tallahassee in 1841. It is instructive regarding medical progress.
    http://tallahasseemagazine.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=835&Itemid=123

  64. Jimbo says:

    Glacierman says:
    December 21, 2011 at 8:25 am
    @Andy Revkin:
    Andy, is this quote from ThinkProgress in 2010 correct?

    To recap:

    Andy Revkin (@Revkin) says:
    December 21, 2011 at 5:19 am
    …..The science linking warming and malaria risk was always iffy,

    and

    The climate blogger Joe Romm and I agree (breaking news): Scientific research and assessments examining the link between human-driven climate change and malaria exposure have, for the most part, accurately gauged and conveyed the nature of the risk that warming could swell the ranks of people afflicted with this awful mosquito-borne disease.
    http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/05/24/more-on-malaria-in-a-warming-world/

    I see two different view from Andy. Maybe I am reading it wrong, advance apologies if I have.

  65. Pat Moffitt says:

    Nick Stokes,
    Your comments are patently false. Aid was tied to the cessation of DDT. Mozambique as an example at one point had 80% of its budget tied to donor funds-and donor funds were tied to no DDT. http://www.panna.org/ddt
    And http://www.fawco.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1058:world-malaria-day-25th-april-ddt-is-not-the-answer-&catid=19&Itemid=174

    More importantly you seem unaware of the role of DDT in mosquito aversion. While it is true in some areas mosquitos are now resistant to DDT they still show an aversion response to DDTs presence (not true of other pesticides) making it the perfect application for ITNs and the coating of interior dwellings. DDT’s persistence and safety to humans makes it a critical tool for those villages that cannot be reached on a continuing basis by the limited health. http://www.kaisernetwork.org/daily_reports/rep_index.cfm?DR_ID=41219

    We need a new malaria narrative. My story -malaria is a tragedy we should no longer allow. It can be eradicated if we make a commitment to do so. It will be hard, we will make mistakes, it will require all the tools we have, and perhaps some we don’t yet have (vaccine). It requires focus, funding, attention to detail, adapting, questioning and learning. None of this will happen if malaria is allowed to become a weapon wielded by ideological warriors on either side of the climate wars.
    Once we allow a problem to enter the ideological arena- the goal becomes winning. Unfortunately, the first casualty is any hope we had of fixing the problem.

    Any idea how many lives that $1.8 million grant would have solved if it went to bed nets or anti-malarials?

  66. John F. Hultquist says:

    Nick Stokes says:
    December 21, 2011 at 1:21 am
    Eric Worrall says: December 20, 2011 at 11:49 pm

    Regarding: DDT use for malaria control

    Apparently this is a complex issue that ought not be expressed in “blog bites.” See, for example :
    http://www.cbgnetwork.org/1180.html

  67. Marian says:

    Also not forgetting the one of the World’s leading experts on the subject of Malaria. Prof Paul Reiter.

    I believe from memory. Didn’t he have a lawsuit to get his name removed from the IPCC?

    The Distortion of the Malaria Issue by the UN and Al Gore – from The Great Global Warming Swindle

  68. Nick Stokes says:

    DirkH says: December 21, 2011 at 6:52 am
    “Your link points to this WUWT post, not to the Stockholm convention.”

    Sorry about that. Here it is.

    Pat Moffitt says: December 21, 2011 at 11:44 am
    “Your comments are patently false. Aid was tied to the cessation of DDT.”

    You’ll need to substantiate that better. I couldn’t find it in your links. And they were campaigning against DDT use, which clearly means someone is using it.

    I believe some US anti-malaria programs stopped using DDT following the Nixon admin ban. But there was no international ban, and UN agencies kept using it. And I know of no tying of general aid to cessation of DDT use for insect control.

    And as John Hultquist says, it isn’t simple. Sri Lanka stopped using it in the mid 60’s, simply because insect resistance had made it ineffective (they later resumed).

  69. Smokey says:

    Nick Stokes,

    So, tell me where I can buy some DDT. At my local Home Depot? Where, if it’s not banned?

  70. Andrew says:

    Marian says:
    December 21, 2011 at 12:28 pm
    “Also not forgetting the one of the World’s leading experts on the subject of Malaria. Prof Paul Reiter.”

    Recent comment on that video on YouTube.

    Which, everyone knows, is owned by Google, and we know about Google’s AGW bias.

    So if everyone embeds this video on their website, it will begin to circumvent the Google AGW bias…I think…but I haven’t been ‘peer reviewed’.

    @dutchflats It will be now! It just got posted on “Watt’s Up With That” “…the world’s most viewed climate website.” So that may be changing!
    atnguy 3 minutes ago

  71. Nick Stokes says:

    Smokey, read the report I linked. About 5000 tons a year are manufactured. It’s banned by Stockholm convention for agricultural use, not for disease control. I’m not sure whether the 1972 US ban had that exemption – it may be that if you can convince the authorities you have a malaria problem, you can get some. In fact, they’ll probably spray you for free.

  72. Smokey says:

    Nick Stokes,

    Why should I have to convince anyone of anything if DDT is not banned? Maybe I just want to get rid of pesky mosquitoes or bedbugs. So once again: where can I buy some DDT if it isn’t banned?

  73. Pat Moffitt says:

    Nick,
    Do you agree that DDT has some unique aspect related to the mosquito’s aversion to even entering a room where DDT has been sprayed. An important fact even if it doesn’t directly kill mosquitos.
    Some more on-defacto DDT bans (you don’t have to ban the sale if you link the aid to not using it as has been the repeated pattern of the World Bank (see 1997 loan to India) and the UN’s push away from vector controls. Here are some more:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1117705/?tool=pmcentrez
    from an article in the British Medical Journal
    “It is possible that DDT will be used again in Mozambique. Its use there was stopped several decades ago, because 80%of the country’s health budget came from donor funds, and donors refused to allow the use of DDT.”

    And this paper that found a link to reduced DDT spraying and malaria reemergence in South America
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2627649/pdf/9284373.pdf

    “Countries are banning or reducing the use of DDT because of continuous international and national pressures against DDT (e.g., the International Pesticide Action Network is “…working to stop the production, sale, and use…” of DDT [14]) and aggressive marketing tactics of producers of more expensive alternative insecticides. It has become easier for political pressures to succeed given the global strategy to deemphasize use of the house-spray approach to malaria control.”

  74. Aussie says:

    I am a non-scientist, and like the other Australian who linked to the recent Australian report, I was extremely sceptical about what it stated, considering the report to be total alarmism.

    Here are my reasons:

    1. that particular report mentioned Dengue Fever, and claimed we would see a massive increase of cases (as the mosquito moves South). A little bit of research (all of 5 seconds on Google) produced a report from the Queensland and Victorian governments which is worth considering. With regard to Dengue Fever, the mosquitoes cannot carry the disease unless they bite the human host first. The method by which the Dengue Fever is carried in Australia is for a human host to have been bitten in one of the countries in the tropics, such as Bali. That person then brings the disease into Australia. Most of the big outbreaks have been in far north Queensland, such as Cairns.

    2. I assume that the same is probably true with regard to Malaria in Australia. I will have to check that out. Certainly we have malaria outbreaks in the tropics but these have not happened in a long time.

    3. Other mosquitoes carry diseases such as Ross River Fever (or Virus) which can cause arthritis and encephalitis (also known as Murray River Encephalitis)

    Now, my real point is that I am personally a mosquito magnet. As I was growing up, and in summer, I would end up with huge welts upon my body from mosquito and other insect bites. When pregnant with my first son I was bitten more than 100 times when I accompanied my parents to Emerald in the Dandenong mountains. The skin specialist thought it might have been scabies, but he was wrong, it was definitely mosquito bites!! Even as a mosquito magnet and being bitten so many times, I have never had any of those exotic tropical diseases, not even when I lived in Townsville and visited Cairns!!

    As a result of my own personal experience, I find that reports claiming that such diseases will increase to be worthy of sceptism. A lot depends on the type of mosquitoes in a given area, as well as whether or not someone who brought the disease back from an overseas destination has then been bitten by the mosquito. That is how the epidemic starts in the first place!!

  75. Runar says:

    I think that a “debunked” category tab at the top of WUWT webpage would be in order. In there all the debunked alarmist chicken little claims could be listed for easy access! A veritable hall of shame.

  76. David says:

    Runar says:
    December 21, 2011 at 2:43 pm
    I think that a “debunked” category tab at the top of WUWT webpage would be in order. In there all the debunked alarmist chicken little claims could be listed for easy access! A veritable hall of shame.

    —————————————————-

    It is already there. Top header, “Climate Fail Files” Problem is I only saw one example, when there should be many more. WUWT?

  77. Aussie says:

    @David and Runar,

    I actually think it is a good idea to make a listing of the scares that have been debunked. Unfortunately it is how the debunking is completed that will matter. For example, it is easy for someone who is a mosquito magnet to be very sceptical of claims that there will be an increase in malaria because of global warming, or of dengue fever for that matter.

    I think that making claims about the diseases such as dengue fever, malaria, Ross River fever, Lyme Disease and similar is the kind of scares that got me to the point of not accepting any of the nonsense from these reports. The claims about an increase in Lyme disease are another example where a little bit of searching on Google brings some interesting results. Lyme disease is brough on my a tick bite. The ticks are found on deer. The next question for me, (I live in a country where we do not have the wild deer population) would have to be: has there been an increase in population of the deer, and then what conditions are required to see an increase in the population. Here in Australia we have a bit of a kangaroo population increase (I live in an area where the kangaroos are increasing in number despite being in an urban area) so my question is why has there been an increase? Perhaps it is because groups such as PETA keep opposing the necessary culling of the animals every year.

    On top of Lyme disease, Malaria and Dengue fever, I thought that the alarmists had also mentioned increases in heart attacks, diabetes, and strokes. I am surprised that I have not heard them mention an increase in the various forms of arthritis to go along with the other diseases. It seems that they will tack on anything in these papers, so long as they mention globull warming of climate change.

    In 2009 when I was in Canada doing the tours, I found myself increasingly irritated when mention was made of Climate Change. In particular it was irritating when it was mentioned in relation to the pine beetle. If the person had said something along the lines of “the past few winters have not reached a low enough temperature” and left it like that I might not have been so irritated. Last year in New Zealand I found it refreshing to have tour guides that were not going along with the b.s. and were making the more direct and obvious statements about how fjords are formed.

    Most of the alarmism can be refuted by looking at the most simple and logical explanations that even a non-scientist can understand, such as photosynthesis. These simple explanations are being constantly overlooked.

  78. Larry in Texas says:

    Finally, the truth emerges out of Penn State. Bravo! Keep trying to bring out the truth, Penn State. It will ultimately be good for your soul.

  79. Gary Pearse says:

    I’m afraid I’m skeptical of both the earlier AGW increasing malaria and this one stating that infectiousness declines with AGW. First, let’s look at the last one – infectuousness is high in Africa where it’s plenty warm. Second, do these researchers on both sides knows that builders of the Rideau Canal to Ottawa Canada after the War of 1812 died of malaria and yellow fever, which we have since eradicated – note this was during the Little Ice Age – some like it hot, some like it cold!

  80. Tom Harley says:

    Reblogged this on pindanpost and commented:
    Mosquito season will soon be upon us…when it next rains, this has been a dry start to a ‘wet’ season for Broome…or, the calm before the storm. I undertook an interview with a UK researcher earlier this year who, soon after visiting Broome became ill. Months later she discovered she had Ross River virus, a mosquito borne disease that infects a number of people in our tropics, leaving them aching and lethargic. No cure, and can take years to get over it…

  81. Smokey says:

    ‘a physicist’ says:

    “The belief that DDT cannot be freely purchased and applied to control malaria in Africa is startlingly widespread here on WUWT…”

    “Startlingly widespread”?? I challenge you to cut ‘n’ paste a half dozen of those ‘widespread’ comments about DDT being banned in Africa. One or two comments does not equate to “startlingly widespread”.

  82. A physicist says:
    a physicist says: “The belief that DDT cannot be freely purchased and applied to control malaria in Africa is startlingly widespread here on WUWT…”

    Smokey says: “Startlingly widespread”?? I challenge you to cut ‘n’ paste a half dozen of those ‘widespread’ comments about DDT being banned in Africa. One or two comments does not equate to “startlingly widespread”

    Challenge accepted, Smokey. Just restrict Google’s search to the WUWT site: “DDT Malaria Africa site:http://wattsupwiththat.com” Result: 202 hits. And yes, mostly they’re on-target hits.

    Thanks for the challenge, and a sincere “Merry Christmas” is outbound to you, Smokey!

  83. Smokey says:

    ‘a physicist':

    My challenge to you was:

    I challenge you to cut ‘n’ paste a half dozen of those “startlingly widespread” comments about DDT being banned in Africa.

    Cut and paste the actual comments specifically referring to Africa. Simples. Should be real easy to find all those ‘startlingly widespread’ comments… if they exist, as you claim.

  84. A physicist says:

    Smokey says: My challenge to you was: I challenge you to cut ‘n’ paste a half dozen of those “startlingly widespread” comments about DDT being banned in Africa.

    Cut and paste the actual comments specifically referring to Africa. Simples. Should be real easy to find all those ‘startlingly widespread’ comments… if they exist, as you claim.

    Okey-dokey Smokey … I’ll give myself three minutes, cutting and pasting from WUWT as you request, changing not one word, and beginning now:

    (1) Malaria in Africa was practically extinct before the banning of DDT.

    (2) Somewhere around 35-50 milion African children have died … Withholding DDT against malaria is passive genocide …

    (3) The DDT ban is the SOLE responsible agent for the spread of malaria in Southern Africa …

    (4) Once free of malaria, Europe and North America then moved to ban DDT, killing hundreds of millions in Africa and Asia in the process.

    (5) Some 35 million children in Africa have died from malaria, a mostly preventable disease, since DDT was banned. Quite a record of genocide, …

    (6) When do you think the lefties will take blame for killing tens of millions with malaria in Africa with their DDT hoax?

    (7) So in addition to the effective banning of DDT, that destroyed the lives of hundreds of millions in Africa due to resurgent malaria, the Green

    (8) And while we are at it, why not allow them [Africans] to build DDT factories. Malaria has killed over 40 million African children under five in the decades it …

    (9) Just as millions died from malaria as a result of the DDT ban, so millions … The club of Rome just don’t want to fight a ground war in Africa

    (10) Since DDT was banned for a hoax, 40 million black children in Africa have died of Malaria.

    (11) Banning DDT in Africa did more to promote the rise of malaria there since that people

    (12) The DDT ban has killed millions of Africans, mostly children, due to Malaria outbreaks.

    There. That took less than two minutes. Thank you Google! And I could have done not 12, but 100 or more similar quotes here on WUWT alone. Gee, it’s almost like there’s a playbook with these lines in it, eh?

  85. Smokey says:

    ‘a physicist':

    As I originally wrote: “Why should I have to convince anyone of anything if DDT is not banned?”

    But Nick Stokes didn’t agree.

    So Pat Moffitt added:

    “Some more on defacto DDT bans… from an article in the British Medical Journal
    ‘It is possible that DDT will be used again in Mozambique. Its use there was stopped several decades ago, because 80% of the country’s health budget came from donor funds, and donors refused to allow the use of DDT.’… ‘Countries are banning… DDT because of continuous international and national pressures against DDT… working to stop the production, sale, and use… of DDT’ ” [and so on]. It is clear that DDT has been banned in Africa.

    Nick Stokes claimed that there was no ban on DDT. He has been refuted by at least three others here. I suppose I wasn’t clear enough, but being one of those refuting Stokes, my original point was that DDT was in fact banned in Africa. You jumped in and opined that: “The belief that DDT cannot be freely purchased and applied to control malaria in Africa is startlingly widespread here on WUWT,” indicating that there is no ban on DDT. That opinion has been repeatedly debunked, which is what I was clearly [but maybe not clearly enough for you] referring to regarding DDT and Africa. But slippery eel that you are, you now try to turn your own argument on its head, and apply it to any mention of DDT/Africa, deliberately missing the point. But I don’t mind, since Nick Stokes has been refuted, and as your comments now show, DDT has been banned in Africa. The result is millions of unnecessary deaths. Not that either of you cares. They’re only Africans, right?

    I asked Nick Stokes: “So, tell me where I can buy some DDT. At my local Home Depot? Where, if it’s not banned?” But of course DDT is banned both here and in Africa; banned just like machine guns are banned here. The government can use them, but not the citizenry. Why not? Because both DDT and machine guns are banned. Neither can be “freely purchased” as you claim.

    So show us those “startlingly widespread” comments supporting the debunked claim that DDT hasn’t been banned in Africa.

    Take your time. Maybe Nick can help you out.

  86. A physicist says:

    Smokey folks who make and sell DDT count African nations among their best customers:

    DDT USED BY WHOM: At present 31 countries including 17 African Countries are using DDT as for vector borne disease control purposes.
    So the plain fact is, for health protection purposes, DDT is not “banned in Africa.”

    The reason folks don’t spray DDT everywhere any more is simpler, Smokey: it’s a d*mn persistent and d*mn toxic chemical that’s d*mn foolish to use indiscriminately.

  87. Smokey says:

    My comment above eliminated any wiggle room regarding ‘a physicist’s’ fictional “startlingly widespread” comments claiming that there is no ban on DDT in Africa. Of course there is a ban on DDT, which still cannot be “freely purchased” [to use 'a physicist's' own phrase] to treat living spaces and sleeping areas. So as usual, ‘a physicist’ trots off in a different direction, still trying to rescue his lost argument. Wake me when I [or the average African] can go to our local Home Depot and buy some DDT in case we get bedbugs. That will mean the ban has been lifted. Last I looked, I couldn’t find DDT at the hardware store.

    Rachel Carson caused milions of deaths from malaria by publishing Silent Spring. Her claim that DDT caused thinning of birds’ eggshells has been refuted, yet she never recanted. After all, what is increased African mortality compared with Rachel Carson’s reputation?

  88. A physicist says:

    Smokey, maybe what the Africans don’t like are the male genital deformities associated to present-day DDT use in Africa?

  89. CDJ Biz says:

    Aphysicist:

    You have forgotten equally hysterical studies claiming male genital malformation from eating chicken (http://nutritionfacts.org/blog/2011/09/15/eating-chicken-may-lead-to-a-smaller-penis/) or of course the alwalys eeevil phthalates causing smaller weenies (http://www.ourstolenfuture.org/newscience/oncompounds/phthalates/2005/2005-0527swanetal.htm).

    Please do not reference these sorts of “fright of the week” studies to make a case on this site.

  90. Smokey says:

    ‘a physicist’,

    Please don’t complain about your personal problems here.

Comments are closed.