Organochlorines and breast cancer:
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This paper explores the role and utilization of scientific evidence concerning one of the potential adverse health impacts (breast cancer) of the use of chlorine through examining the aims of an environmental group, Greenpeace, and its opponents. Specifically, the paper identifies the claims of Greenpeace and the scientific evidence used to justify those claims in its (Thornton, 1993) report Chlorine, Human Health and the Environment: The Breast Cancer Warning. A media analysis was conducted over a ten year period to assess what counter-claims were generated. The claimsmaking activities of breast cancer advocacy groups, scientists, pro-chlorine groups, and environmentalists were monitored. To counter the Greenpeace claims, pro-chlorine supporters argued for the responsible use of science, and redefined the chlorine issue as one of public health and economic security. The counter-claims between the supporters and the opponents of the chlorine issue stemmed from differences in their agendas, values, and solutions proffered in the environmental health policy domain.
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