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Tag Archives: Herbicides
http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_analysis/1122020/monsanto_bayer_and_dow_face_trial_for_systematic_human_rights_abuses.htmlThe world’s major agrochemical companies, Monsanto, Dow, Bayer, Syngenta, DuPont and BASF, will face a public tribunal in early December accused of systematic human rights violations. Continue reading
Superweeds have become a major problem with GE farming, especially with canola where superweeds are being found in fields, along roads and railway tracks. These weeds are genetically engineered and resistant to herbicides. See the latest study from the University of Kansas at:
This post about birth defects and Round Up (the herbicide used on GE crops) was sent by an organic farmer on Vancouver Island. It’s an interesting piece because it is written by a group of well respected scientists who have brought together a lot of information on Round Up. If you don’t have time to read the whole thing, just look at the summary. Anyone would have to think twice about spraying Round Up after reading this.
A fundamental change occurred when the first genetically engineered crops went commercial in 1996. Farmers who planted GE crops that were altered to withstand continued application of herbicide glyphosate began to rely on a single system for weed management — the use of glyphosate, sold under brand name Roundup and manufactured by Monsanto. As Dr. David A. Mortensen of the Pennsylvania State University noted in his testimony before the Domestic Policy Subcommittee of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee on July 28, 2010, “[i]n evolutionary terms, widespread and persistent glyphosate use without diversity in weed control practices is a strong selection pressure for weeds able to survive glyphosate.” (”Mortensen Testimony”). In other words, get ready for the invasion of superweeds.
Washington, D.C. - The spread of weeds resistant to Roundup herbicide is bringing new scrutiny to the government’s regulation of biotech crops.
U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, a longtime critic of the biotech industry, said the U.S. Agriculture Department has been too quick to approve new varieties of herbicide-tolerant crops and other biotech products.
“Now, more than ever, farmers need to have a Department of Agriculture that takes care to preserve and protect the farming environment for generations to come,” Kucinich said during a House hearing he chaired Wednesday on the spread of Roundup-resistant weeds.
One weed scientist, David Mortensen at Penn State University, said the government should restrict the use of herbicide-tolerant crops and impose a tax on biotech seeds to fund research and education programs.
The resistant weeds cannot be killed by the sole use of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup herbicide, which has become broadly popular with farmers with the advent more than a decade ago of soybeans, cotton, corn and other crops that are immune to the chemical. The weeds now infest about 11 million acres, a fivefold increase in three years, Mortensen said.
LUXEMBOURG, March 9 (Reuters)
U.S. biotech giant Monsanto’s (MON.N) EU patent on its Roundup Ready soybean seeds should not extend to cover imports of processed soybean meal into the 27-nation bloc, an adviser to Europe’s top court said.
The opinion from Advocate General Paolo Mengozzi must still be confirmed by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in a final ruling. But it is a setback for Monsanto in its legal battle to secure royalty payments on the use of its seeds.
You may ask why I am posting issues on pesticides. You may ask what they have to do with GMO’s?
GMO crops use pesticides (herbicides, fungicides, insecticides) and because there is a resistance being created in weeds to these chemicals, all forms of pesticides are being manufactured in stronger batches. It’s a cycle that will be very difficult to break now. We are in it. This is the tipping point. It is up to every individual to come to some understanding of what the real issue is here. It’s not about the chemicals. It’s about control. Read on:
By DR. IAN SIMPSON
The Western Star
My letter last week about cosmetic use of pesticides has promoted some discussion both in The Western Star printed edition and its web edition.
I would like to reply to Tuesday’s letter from Lorne Hepworth of CropLife Canada.
He states “we can rest assured that before any pesticide is sold in Canada it undergoes comprehensive scientific review and risk assessment by Health Canada.”
Health Canada has created PMRA — the Pesticide Management and Regulatory Agency — which is the responsible body for reviewing all the studies submitted. But there are problems:
- Underfunding — in 2002, $8 million of the funding was from the pesticide industry.
- PMRA does not conduct its own in-house laboratory work. It reviews the research provided — most of it from industry sources and most of it not published in peer reviewed literature.
- The industry requests PMRA to treat the material as “proprietary.” So this science remains hidden.
- PMRA relies mainly on U.S.A. studies (80 per cent of the studies reviewed in the early part of the decade.)
- Health Canada has a track record of approving pesticides, only to later phase them out due to health and environmental concerns. Examples: DDT, Eldrin, Diazinon, Dursan, Mecoprop.
- PMRA does not evaluate other chemicals in the formulation, so- called “inerts,” or the breakdown products.
Mr. Hepworth goes on to say “As for benefits … well maintained public and private spaces make for happier healthier communities.” Happier I will not debate, but healthier? This I will argue is nonsense. In the comments on the web page, DB from NL worries at the use of the word “linked” when commenting on the link between pesticide exposure and different diseases. DB would like hard numbers and quantification.
Lawn companies seek charges against Minister, activists
Thu Jan. 28 2010 The Canadian Press
TORONTO — A group representing dozens of lawn care companies trying to bring charges against Ontario’s environment minister and senior bureaucrats over the province’s controversial pesticide ban is now calling for charges against 23 activists.
Group spokesman Jeffrey Lowes of MREP Communications said Wednesday that information has been laid for criminal charges against 23 individuals.
The additional proceedings – 115 charges under Section 504 of the Criminal Code – were filed with a Kingston, Ont.-area court on Tuesday, Lowes said in a release.
A so-called “private information” against Environment Minister John Gerretsen and senior ministry staff was filed Jan. 20, said Lowes.
The activists worked with the Ontario government to ban pesticides using alleged false and misleading information to undermine the industry, Lowes said.
New Report Reveals Dramatic Rise in Pesticide Use on Genetically Engineered (GE) Crops Due to the Spread of Resistant Weeds
GE crops increase herbicide use by 383 million pounds from 1996 to
2008, with 46 percent of the total increase occurring in 2007 and 2008
Genetically engineered (GE) corn, soybeans and cotton have increased use of weed-killing herbicides by 383 million pounds in the U.S. from 1996 to 2008, according to a new report titled “Impacts of Genetically Engineered Crops on Pesticide Use: The First 13 Years (PDF)” announced today by The Organic Center (TOC), the Union for Concerned Scientists (UCS) and the
Center for Food Safety (CFS). In addition, GE corn and cotton have reduced insecticide use by 64 million pounds, resulting in an overall increase of 318 million pounds of pesticides over the first 13 years of commercial use.