1920s: Monsanto expands into industrial chemicals and drugs, becoming the world’s largest maker of aspirin, acetylsalicyclic acid, (toxic of course). This is also the time when things began to go horribly wrong for the planet in a hurry with the introduction of their polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).
“PCBs were considered an industrial wonder chemical, an oil that wouldn’t burn, impervious to degradation and had almost limitless applications. Today PCBs are considered one of the gravest chemical threats on the planet. Widely used as lubricants, hydraulic fluids, cutting oils, waterproof coatings and liquid sealants, are potent carcinogens and have been implicated in reproductive, developmental and immune system disorders. The world’s center of PCB manufacturing was Monsanto’s plant on the outskirts of East St. Louis, Illinois, which has the highest rate of fetal death and immature births in the state.”(1)