Eradication would not be cheap. A back-of-the-envelope estimate suggests it would cost about $9 billion a year for two or three decades to make and distribute the necessary vaccines, drugs and equipment. But that compares with $3 billion a year indefinitely, merely to contain the problem—not to mention the economic damage done by the disease. Big ideas have to await the right time to be realised. But for malaria that time may be now.