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In the ``Issues in Focus'' series, Billings describes the origins and uses of pesticides; problems resulting from their residues; national and international regulatory agencies; and suggestions for a safer future. The fact that there are five national agencies and four international organizations charged with protecting the food supply is a measure of how complicated this topic is. The presentation here is also cluttered with undigested facts and minutia, making it even more difficult to sort out the more important ideas and concepts—included, for instance, are a table from the 1990 New England Apple Spray Guide (with average temperatures and hours of wet foliage necessary for apple scab leaf infection) and a list of the eight states from which contaminated milk samples were recalled due to a 1986 heptachlor contamination. Chapter notes, containing many references to professional journals, are also unfootnoted. A title on an important issue, then, that ends up out of focus. List of abbreviations; index. Photos not seen. (Nonfiction. 12+)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 1993

ISBN: 0-89490-299-7

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Enslow

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 1992

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From the Pocket Change Collective series

Brief yet inspirational, this story will galvanize youth to use their voices for change.

Teen environmental activist and founder of the nonprofit Hannah4Change, Testa shares her story and the science around plastic pollution in her fight to save our planet.

Testa’s connection to and respect for nature compelled her to begin championing animal causes at the age of 10, and this desire to have an impact later propelled her to dedicate her life to fighting plastic pollution. Starting with the history of plastic and how it’s produced, Testa acknowledges the benefits of plastics for humanity but also the many ways it harms our planet. Instead of relying on recycling—which is both insufficient and ineffective—she urges readers to follow two additional R’s: “refuse” and “raise awareness.” Readers are encouraged to do their part, starting with small things like refusing to use plastic straws and water bottles and eventually working up to using their voices to influence business and policy change. In the process, she highlights other youth advocates working toward the same cause. Short chapters include personal examples, such as observations of plastic pollution in Mauritius, her maternal grandparents’ birthplace. Testa makes her case not only against plastic pollution, but also for the work she’s done, resulting in something of a college-admissions–essay tone. Nevertheless, the first-person accounts paired with science will have an impact on readers. Unfortunately, no sources are cited and the lack of backmatter is a missed opportunity.

Brief yet inspirational, this story will galvanize youth to use their voices for change. (Nonfiction. 12-18)

Pub Date: Oct. 13, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-22333-8

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Review Posted Online: July 26, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2020

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From the Arctic Ocean to Africa to Oregon, people are finding exciting careers that help save the planet, and this lively and graphically upbeat volume presents some of the stories behind this green revolution. Creating a $35-million empire out of worm poop and garbage, building a micro-hydro plant in the Democratic Republic of Congo and designing Earth-friendly bikinis are just some of the green-warrior stories in this wide-ranging collection. The attractive design reinforces the environmental theme, with black text and green sidebars and illustrations, and an eight-page, full-color photo section presents photographs of the “eco-pioneers.” The zealous tone is clearly celebratory and laudatory—“[T]his green angel is definitely earning her wings”; “Well, weren’t they amazing? I knew you would be impressed”—but the enthusiasm is infectious. A volume that just may inspire young readers to pursue career paths both exciting and green. (endnotes, resources, index) (Nonfiction. 12 & up)

Pub Date: April 15, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-897550-18-2

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Lobster Press

Review Posted Online: June 20, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2010

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