It is no secret that we live a chemical society; statistics reveal that 96 percent of the products we consume either directly incorporate or are indirectly affected by industrial chemicals. It should be no surprise that between 1975 and 1995 the volume of synthetic organic chemicals available for market tripled from 50 million tons to 150 millions. Current estimates put this number around 200 million tons of chemicals and EPA estimates reveal that there are as many as 84,000 chemical distributed in the U.S. alone.  The volume of global chemical consumption in 2013 was valued at $4.1 trillion dollars and it estimated that the pace of global chemical innovation will continue to breakaway from population growth. Beyond increased exposure risks, there is very little unbiased third-party research that helps us understand chemical interactions.  It is interesting to ponder our global and somewhat ubiquitous human preoccupation with chemicals; one can only assume that our fixation and obsession with health, sanitation and our associated needs for newness and cleanliness in our environment fuels their consumption.  Ultimately, chemicals are human weapon in our persistent fight against nature as they aid in the preservation of life and the shaping of human environments and our landscape.

Every summer, the Portland Parks and Recreation department paints their pools so that residents have clean and pristine environments to swim in, this series documents our ongoing human quest to recreate Eden.


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