Category: Chemicals

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Monarch Butterfly Populations Are Rising Again After Years In Decline


Credit: Wikipedia

Credit: Wikipedia





This year, we have published several stories about the dwindling monarch butterfly populations and some of the efforts that have been made to save the species. New reports last week have indicated that these efforts may actually be paying off, because Monarch populations are actually beginning to grow again. In Mexico, one of the main breeding areas for these butterflies, scientists believe that this year there will be at least three times as many of them this year than there was last year.

During a recent conference at the Piedra Herrada research reserve, U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said that Mexico and the US will be working together to create pesticide-free zones for the butterflies to flourish.

“Mexico, the U.S., and Canada have many species that don’t know our political borders, that cross the borders freely,” she said during a conference at the Piedra Herrada research reserve, adding that the three countries will be working together to rebuild the populations.

She told the audience that they hope to see “225 million monarch butterflies returning right here to Mexico every year. We believe we can get there by working together and it sounds like we may be on our way, we hope.”

“We are very glad to report that calculations done before the landfall of Hurricane Patricia showed the monarch presence could cover up to four hectares, a clear indication that the efforts mentioned by Secretary Jewell are having a positive effect,” Environment Secretary Rafael Pacchiano said.

“We estimate that the butterfly population that arrives at the reserve is as much as three and could reach four times the surface area it occupied last season,” he added.

For years, environmental experts have been warning about the steady decline of monarch butterfly populations. The causes of this decline have been largely speculation until recently, but a new report suggests that Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup Ready could be responsible.

The report was recently released by US environment watchdog Center for Food Safety and sheds new light on what has been happening with monarch butterfly populations.

According to the report, Monsanto’s herbicide has wiped out 99 percent of milkweed in corn and soybean fields in the US Midwest since 1999.

This has resulted in a decline of nearly 90 percent in monarch butterfly populations in the past 20 years.

Without the milkweed, the butterfly’s food supply is entirely cut out because caterpillars eat only milkweed plants, and then milkweed is needed again when it is time for the butterfly to lay their eggs.

Although this is a very serious problem, it is something that the average person can help to solve. Anyone with some space in their lawn or garden can plant milkweed to help reverse the trend that Monsanto started.

Below are some PDF guides which give you step by step instructions on how to plant milkweed and create habitats for monarch butterflies:

  1. Planting Native Milkweed Species
  2. Avoiding Non-Native Species
  3. Create Habitat for Monarchs
  4. Gardening for Monarchs


John Vibes is an author and researcher who organizes a number of large events including the Free Your Mind Conference. He also has a publishing company where he offers a censorship free platform for both fiction and non-fiction writers. You can contact him and stay connected to his work at his Facebook page. You can purchase his books, or get your own book published at his website This article (Monarch Butterfly Populations Are Rising Again After Years In Decline) was made available via

True Activist

True Activist Exposing the truth one lie at a time

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© David Gray
Scientific research has increasingly linked common chemicals found in everyday products to diabetes, obesity, cancer, and other major ailments, according to a new policy statement.

Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) like bisphenol A and phthalates, found in food can linings, plastics, cosmetics, and pesticides, are common to the point that everyone on Earth has been exposed to one or more. EDCs – which influence the body’s natural hormones – mimic, block, or simply interfere with hormone functions, leading to the malformation of cells.

The Endocrine Society now says in a new scientific statement that research in recent years has repeatedly pointed to links between these and other chemicals to not only diabetes and obesity, but infertility and breast cancer.

“In 2015, there is far more conclusive evidence about whether, when, and how endocrine-disrupting chemicals perturb endocrine systems, including in humans,” said the Endocrine Society, which includes health specialists involved in EDC research.

READ MORE: TTIP will legalize cancer-causing chemicals banned by EU, trade union warns

“Thus, it is more necessary than ever to minimize further exposures, to identify new endocrine disrupting chemicals as they emerge, and to understand underlying mechanisms in order to develop methods to enable interventions in cases of endocrine disrupting chemical-associated disease. This is especially important because new chemicals may be released into the marketplace without appropriate safety testing.”


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Wake Up World

Baby10th September 2013

By Raluca Schachter

Contributing Writer for Wake Up World

I have to admit, even the title sounds disturbing! But I believe it’s high time to stop sugar coating the reality we live in. I see in my practice more and more children who share their parents’ nutritional deficiencies and toxicity. Yes, a pure, innocent baby who’s barely starting life is also touched by the harsh environment we live in these days, and parents can pass down their imbalances to their baby.

This article is not supposed to offer a pessimistic view, but rather to help raise awareness, prepare and teach you about how to better take care of your children’s health.

This became really necessary considering that:

  • Environmental toxicity is one of the most important causes of chronic illness in the world today.
  • Heavy metals as well as petrochemicals play an important role in toxic buildup and disease.
  • Every man, woman and child in the United States has at least one petrochemical solvent in their blood stream and likely more than 100.
  • In the past 40 years, every single person tested in the United States has been found to have styrene in their blood…
  • … and given that everyone has styrene in their blood, the excretion of this petrochemical solvent in the urine should also show up on everyone’s test.
  • The most symptomatic and chronically ill individuals are those with poor excretion patterns.

How Toxic Is Our World Today?

Over 80,000 man-made chemicals have been added to our environment. Most of them are toxins and a great many are carcinogens and endocrine disrupters. The situation with each passing year grows worse, not better. Toxins now pervade the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, and the seemingly endless array of body care products — toothpastes, mouthwashes, hair products, makeup, shampoos, soaps, lip balms, body lotions, sun products, etc.

Read More Here.

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Study: Dispersants did not help oil degrade in BP spill

November 9, 2015 by By Seth Borenstein
Samantha Joye, a professor of marine sciences in the University of Georgia Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, studies the oil plumes generated by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon blowout. Credit: Todd Dickey/University of Georgia

The chemical sprayed on the 2010 BP oil spill may not have helped crucial petroleum-munching microbes get rid of the slick, a new study suggests.

And that leads to more questions about where much of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill went. If the new results are true, up to half the oil can’t be accounted for, said the author of a new study on the spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

After the 172 million gallon (650 million liter) spill, the chemical dispersant Corexit 9500 was applied by airplane on the slick to help it go away and help natural microbes in the water eat the oil faster. The oil appeared to dissipate, but scientists and government officials didn’t really monitor the microbes and chemicals, said University of Georgia marine scientist Samantha Joye.

So Joye and colleagues recreated the application in a lab, with the dispersant, BP oil and water from the gulf, and found that it didn’t help the microbes at all and even hurt one key oil-munching bug, according to a study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“The dispersants did a great job in that they got the oil off the surface,” Joye said. “What you see is the dispersants didn’t ramp up biodegradation.”

In fact, she found the oil with no dispersant “degraded a heckuva lot faster than the oil with dispersants,” Joye said.


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Dispersants Did Not Help In BP Spill, Half Of Oil Not Accounted For: Study

bp_wave_001By Joe Wright

The fallout continues from the Deepwater Horizon explosion that directly killed 11 workers and ravaged the food chain and the environment more than 5 years ago.

Since then we have seen little accountability, despite a nominal fine against BP for its role in unleashing 4 million barrels of oil (approx. 200 million gallons). In fact, the EPA lifted a ban which subsequently resulted in BP being awarded $40 Billion in new contracts, essentially erasing all that was “lost” by BP from their criminality.

Running in tandem with BP’s negligence was the use of Corexit 9500 oil dispersant (owned by Nalco, a Goldman Sachs subsidiary) as a supposed means to drastically minimize the impact. Contrary to that assertion, evidence continues to mount that it did the exact opposite.

Early on, reports began to surface of health anomalies that many believed were attributable to the spraying of the chemical dispersant. Corexit was not only sprayed over the water, but over houses as well. One family documented how all of them became sickened, and afterward tested very high for chemical poisoning. A crew of activists called Project Gulf Impact were on the scene to expose what was taking place, and similarly reported sickness to their own crew, as well as suppression of their media coverage.


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Global Research

Poisoned Agriculture: Depopulation and Human Extinction


There is a global depopulation agenda. The plan is to remove the ‘undesirables’, ‘the poor’ and others deemed to be ‘unworthy’ and a drain on finite resources. However, according to Rosemary Mason, the plan isn’t going to work because an anthropogenic mass extinction is already underway that will affect all life on the planet and both rich and poor alike. Humans will struggle to survive the phenomenon.

A new paper by Rosemary A Mason in the ‘Journal of Biological Physics and Chemistry’, indicates that a ‘sixth extinction’ is under way (the Holocene extinction, sometimes called the Sixth Extinction, is a name describing the ongoing extinction of species during the present Holocene epoch – since around 10,000 BCE). In her paper, ‘The sixth mass extinction and chemicals in the environment: our environmental deficit is now beyond nature’s ability to regenerate’, she argues that loss of biodiversity is the most urgent of the environmental problems, as biodiversity is critical to ecosystem services and human health. And the main culprit is the modern chemical-intensive industrialised system of food and agriculture.

Mason asserts there is a growing threat from the release of hormone-disrupting chemicals that could even be shifting the human sex ratio and reducing sperm counts. An industrial agricultural revolution has created a technology-dependent global food system, but it has also created serious long-run vulnerabilities, especially in its dependence on stable climates, crop monocultures and industrially produced chemical inputs. In effect, farming is a principal source of global toxification and soil degradation.

Without significant pressure from the public demanding action, Mason argues there could little chance of changing course fast enough to forestall disaster. The ‘free’ market is driving the impending disaster and blind faith in corporate-backed technology will not save us. Indeed, such faith in this technology is actually killing us.

Since the late 1990s, US scientists have written in increasingly desperate tones regarding an unprecedented number of fungal and fungal-like diseases, which have recently caused some of the most severe die-offs and extinctions ever witnessed in wild species and which are jeopardizing food security. Only one paper dared to mention pesticides as being a primary cause, however.

Mason cites a good deal of evidence to show how the widespread use on agricultural crops of the systemic neonicotinoid insecticides and the herbicide glyphosate, both of which cause immune suppression, make species vulnerable to emerging infectious pathogens, driving large-scale wildlife extinctions, including essential pollinators.

Providing evidence to show how human disease patterns correlate remarkably well with the rate of glyphosate usage on corn, soy and wheat crops, which has increased due to ‘Roundup Ready’ crops, Mason goes on to present more sources to show how our over-reliance on chemicals in agriculture is causing irreparable harm to all beings on this planet. Most of these chemicals are known to cause illness, and they have likely been causing illnesses for many years. But until recently, the herbicides have never been sprayed directly on food crops and never in this massive quantity.

The depopulation agenda

Mason discusses how agriculture and genetically modified organisms (GMOs) fit into a wider agenda for depopulating the planet. She notes that on the initiative of Gates, in May 2009 some of the richest people in the US met at the home of Nurse, a British Nobel prize-winning biochemist and President (2003–10) of Rockefeller University in Manhattan, to discuss ways of tackling a ‘disastrous’ environmental, social and industrial threat of overpopulation. The meeting was hosted by David Rockefeller Jr. These same individuals have met several times since to develop a strategy in which population growth would be tackled.

The Rockefeller Foundation (RF) was involved in extensive financing of eugenics research  in league with some of the US’s most respected scientists from such prestigious universities as Stanford, Yale, Harvard and Princeton. The explicit aim of the eugenics lobby funded by wealthy élite families, such as Rockefeller, Carnegie, Harriman and others since the 1920s, has embodied what they termed ‘negative eugenics’, the systematic killing off of ‘undesired bloodlines’.

RF funded the earliest research on GMOs, which Mason regards as part of the depopulation agenda. The RF funded the earliest research on GMOs in the 1940s and effectively founded the science of molecular biology.

Mason cites Steven Druker to show the fraud behind GMOs and how governments and leading scientific institutions have systematically misrepresented the facts about GMOs and the scientific research that casts doubt on their safety. Druker has shown that GMOs can have severe health impacts, which have been covered up.

The Royal Society is the preeminent scientific body within the UK that advises the government. It has misrepresented the facts about GMOs and has engaged in various highly dubious and deceptive tactics to promote the technology.

Druker wrote an open letter to RS as it has an obligation to the British public to provide a public response and ‘put the record straight’ on GMOs. Although Sir Paul Nurse’s presidency of Rockefeller University terminated in 2010, after he assumed the Royal Society presidency, Mason notes that Nurse is said to have maintained a laboratory on the Rockefeller campus and has an ongoing relationship with the university.

She asks: is that why Sir Paul was unable (or unwilling) even to discuss GMOs with Steven Druker? Was he sent to London by the Rockefeller Foundation to support the UK Government in their attempt to bring in GM crops? The UK Government and the GM industry have after all been shown to be working together to promote GM crops and foods, undermine consumer choice and ignore environmental harm.

Mason then goes on to discuss the impact of glyphosate residues (herbicide-tolerant GM crops are designed to work with glyphosate), which are found in the organs of animals, human urine and human breast milk as well as in the air and rivers. She documents its widespread use and contamination of soil and water and notes that the WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer’s assessment of glyphosate being a 2A carcinogen (probably carcinogenic in humans) is unwelcome news for the agrochemical industry. She also notes that Roundup usage has led to a depletion of biodiversity and that loss of biodiversity is also correlated with neonicotinoids. However, despite the evidence, the blatant disregard concerning the use of these substances by regulatory agencies around the world is apparent.

To provide some insight into the impact on health of the chemical-intensive model of agriculture, Mason shows that in the US increases in Alzheimer’s disease, obesity, breast cancer, oesophageal cancer, congenital anomalies and a growing burden of disability, particularly from mental disorders are all acknowledged.

She claims that plans are under way to depopulate the planet’s seven million plus people to a more manageable level of between 500–2000 million by a combination of means, including the poisoning and contamination of the planet’s food and water supplies via chemical-intensive industrialised agriculture. Mason also notes that health-damaging GMOs are being made available to the masses (under the guise of ‘feeding the poor’), while elites are more prone to eat organic food.

We may be gone before planned depopulation takes hold

Although Mason cites evidence to show that a section of the US elite has a depopulation agenda, given the amount of poisons being pumped into the environment and into humans, the thrust of her argument is that we could all be extinct before this comes to fruition – both rich and poor alike.

In concluding, she states that the global pesticides industry has been allowed to dominate the regulatory agencies and have created chemicals of mass destruction that can no longer be controlled. She has some faith in systems biology coming to the fore and being able to understand the complexity of the whole organism as a system, rather than just studying its parts in a reductionist manner. But Mason believes that ultimately the public must place pressure on governments and hold agribusiness to account.

However, that in itself may not be enough.

It is correct to highlight the poisonous impacts of the Rockefeller-sponsored petrochemical ‘green revolution’. It has uprooted indigenous/traditional agriculture and local economies and has recast them in a model that suits global agribusiness. It is poisoning life and the environment, threatening food security across the globe and is unsustainable. The ‘green revolution’ was ultimately a tool of US foreign policy that has been used in conjunction with various institutions like the IMF, World Bank and World Trade Organisation. GMOs represent more of the same.

In this respect, Mason follows the line of argument in William F Engdahl’s book ‘Seeds of Destruction: The Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation’, which locates the GM issue and the ‘green revolution’ firmly within the context of empire. Engdahl also sees the Rockefeller-Gates hand behind the great GMO project to a sinister eugenicist strategy of depopulation.

Mason’s concerns about depopulation therefore should not be dismissed, particularly given the record of the likes of the Gates and Rockefeller clans, the various covert sterility programmes that have been instituted by the US over the decades and the way agriculture has and continues to be used as a geopolitical tool to further the agendas of rich interests in the US.

To understand the processes that have led to modern farming and the role of entities like Monsanto, we must appreciate the geopolitics of food and agriculture, which benefits an increasingly integrated global cartel of finance, oil, military and agribusiness concerns. This cartel seeks to gain from war, debt bondage and the control of resources, regardless of any notions relating to food security, good health and nutrition, biodiversity, food democracy, etc.

Food and trade policy analyst Devinder Sharma notes the impacts in India:

“India is on fast track to bring agriculture under corporate control… Amending the existing laws on land acquisition, water resources, seed, fertilizer, pesticides and food processing, the government is in overdrive to usher in contract farming and encourage organized retail. This is exactly as per the advice of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund as well as the international financial institutes.”

In Punjab, India, pesticides have turned the state into a ‘cancer epicentre‘. Moreover, Indian soils are being depleted as a result of the application of ‘green revolution’ ideology and chemical inputs. India is losing 5,334 million tonnes of soil every year due to soil erosion because of the indiscreet and excessive use of fertilisers, insecticides and pesticides. The Indian Council of Agricultural Research reports that soil is become deficient in nutrients and fertility.

And now, there is an attempt to push GM food crops into India in a secretive, non-transparent manner that smacks of regulatory delinquency underpinned by corrupt practices, which suggests officials are working hand in glove with US agribusiness.

As smallholders the world over are being driven from their land and the GMO/chemical-industrial farming model takes over, the problems continue to mount.

The environment, the quality of our food and our health are being sacrificed on the altar of corporate profit and a type of looting based on something we can loosely regard as ‘capitalism’. The solution involves a shift to organic farming and investment in and reaffirmation of indigenous models of agriculture. But ultimately it entails what Daniel Maingi of Growth Partners for Africa says what we must do: “… take capitalism and business out of farming.”

It must also entail, according to Maingi, investing in  “… indigenous knowledge and agroecology, education and infrastructure and stand(ing) in solidarity with the food sovereignty movement.”

In other words, both farmers and consumers must organise to challenge governments, corrupt regulatory bodies and big agribusiness at every available opportunity. If we don’t do this, what Mason outlines may come to pass.


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Banned for household use since 2000
by Julie Fidler
Posted on November 1, 2015

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced Friday a proposal that would ban a pesticide commonly sprayed on citrus fruits, almonds, and other crops.

Chlorpyrifos has been in use since 1965 as an insecticide for oranges, apples, cherries, grapes, broccoli, and asparagus. Dozens of farmworkers have been sickened by chlorpyrifos is recent years. In September 2014, a coalition of environmental health groups sued the EPA, asking the agency to ban the toxic chemical.

The agency cited scientific evidence in defense of its ban on chlorpyrifos for household use in 2000. Prior to the ban, chlorpyrifos was the most widely used household pesticide in the U.S. Sold as Dursban, the Dow-made chemical was found in flea collars and was routinely used to kill household pests, such as roaches, termites and ants.

At the time, the agency warned that farmworkers who mixed chlorpyrifos, sold for farms as Lorsban, or applied it using backpack sprayers or open-cab tractors faced a potentially unacceptable level of risk. The agency also said it needed to research how chlorpyrifos drifting from nearby fields or tracked home on clothing put children’s health at risk.

The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA) say that chlorpyrifos interferes with the brain development of fetuses, infants and children. [1] It has also been found to cause genetic damage in children, though it is reversible, and one study linked the insecticide to an increased risk of autism in unborn children.

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President Obama arrives at the TransCanada Stillwater Pipe Yard in Cushing, Okla. on March 22, 2012. (Associated Press)
President Obama arrives at the TransCanada Stillwater Pipe Yard in Cushing, Okla. on March 22, 2012. (Associated Press) more >
– The Washington Times – Updated: 9:28 p.m. on Monday, November 2, 2015

The company proposing to build the Keystone XL oil pipeline asked the State Department on Monday to halt indefinitely its ongoing review of the massive project, adding new delays and uncertainties, and possibly ensuring that final word will come from President Obama’s successor.

Amid legal challenges in Nebraska — ground zero in the fight over the project — TransCanada officials sent a letter to Secretary of State John F. Kerry and called on the administration to cease immediately its Keystone approval process.

The move raises a real possibility Mr. Obama will not be the one to make a decision on the pipeline and that the next president, perhaps one more inclined to back new oil-and-gas infrastructure in the U.S., will be the final arbiter.

Powerful environmental groups quickly condemned TransCanada’s request and said it’s clear the company simply wants to delay a decision until January 2017, when a Republican may enter the White House.


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Study Reveals Corporate Media’s Refusal to Acknowledge Civilian Victims of US Wars


A U.S. military burn pit at forward operating base Zeebrudge in Helmand province, Afghanistan pictured in March 2013. (Photo: Sgt. Anthony L. Ortiz)

A U.S. military burn pit at forward operating base Zeebrudge in Helmand province, Afghanistan pictured in March 2013. (Photo: Sgt. Anthony L. Ortiz)

Mainstream media outlets are systematically disregarding the hazardous health impacts of widespread U.S. military burn pits on civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan, thereby playing a direct role in “legitimating the environmental injustices of war,” a harrowing new scholarly report concludes.

“During the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the US Department of Defense burned the majority of its solid waste in open-air pits or trenches, producing large amounts of potentially hazardous emissions,” noted Eric Bonds, assistant professor of sociology at University of Mary Washington, in his investigation, published in the journal Environmental Politics.

“It is well known that the uncontrolled burning of plastics, Styrofoam, electronics, unexploded weapons, and other manufactured and highly processed materials releases harmful toxins and particulate matter into the air,” Bonds continued.

“This echoes the other history of Agent Orange when the U.S. government turned its back on the people of Vietnam and walked away, cleaning up just a handful of contaminated places but never acknowledging harm done to Vietnamese civilians or compensating them for their suffering.”
—Eric Bonds, University of Mary Washington

However, when he surveyed major U.S. newspaper stories from 2007 to 2014, Bonds found that discussions of the negative health impacts of these burn pits overwhelmingly focused on the plight faced by U.S. military service members and veterans—but the actual civilians nearby were almost entirely missing from the picture.

“The search produced 49 distinct stories. While five of these stories made passing reference to civilian impacts, and one story mentioned potential impacts to civilians on par with impacts to soldiers, the vast majority of news stories made no mention that Iraqi and Afghan civilians might also have been harmed by the U.S. military’s burning of waste,” he wrote.

What’s more, Bonds noted, “When journalists describe the pollution itself, how it billowed over military bases and covered living quarters with ash and soot, such accounts never mention that this pollution would not have stopped at the cement barricades and concertina wire at base boundaries, but must have also settled over civilians’ homes and the surrounding landscapes.”


From Balad air base in Iraq to Shindad base in Afghanistan, these sites are in fact located in close proximity to “farmsteads, townships, cities, cropland, orchards, and rivers.”

As Common Dreams previously reported, Dr. Mozhgan Savabieasfahani, independent environmental toxicologist based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, has identified a correlation between burn pits and spikes in birth defects among Iraqi communities nearby.

According to Bonds, by failing to tell the stories of the Iraqi and Afghan people impacted, the media has a hand in the injustices committed against them.

“This echoes the other history of Agent Orange when the U.S. government turned its back on the people of Vietnam and walked away, cleaning up just a handful of contaminated places but never acknowledging harm done to Vietnamese civilians or compensating them for their suffering,” Bonds told Common Dreams.

As in Vietnam, people in Iraq and Afghanistan are demanding acknowledgment of—and reparations for—the harm done by U.S. burn pits and toxic munitions.

Iraqi civil society groups including the Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq and the Federation of Workers Councils and Unions in Iraq have organized within their communities and levied international demands for the U.S. to clean up its burn pits, depleted uranium, white phosphorous, and other toxic waste which is creating an ongoing public health crisis in Iraq.

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Australia Approves Massive Coal Mine—Again

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Australia Approves Massive Coal Mine—Again

Just two months after an Australian federal court threw out the government’s approval of one of the world’s largest coal mines because of its expected impact on an endangered snake and lizard, the country’s environment minister has green-lighted the project again.

That means the Indian-owned Carmichael mine in the state of Queensland is back on track to produce an amount of coal that, when burned, would exceed the annual greenhouse gas emissions of 52 countries. Over its 60-year lifetime, it could emit 128 million tons of heat-trapping greenhouse gases, according to a Greenpeace report. Environmentalists also fear the project will damage the iconic Great Barrier Reef.

“Minister [Greg] Hunt’s reapproval risks threatened species, precious groundwater, the global climate, and taxpayers’ money,” said Peter McCallum, spokesperson for the Mackay Conservation Group, which brought the challenge of the mine to the federal court.


RELATED:  Why the World Needs to Shut Down Coal-Fired Power Plants Faster Than Ever


In August, a federal court ruled that then Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s conservative government had illegally ignored evidence showing the mine would damage prime habitat of two endangered critters: the yakka skink—a type of lizard—and the ornamental snake.


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Italy and Austria join growing list of countries banning GMO agriculture




(NaturalNews) European nations are leading the world in rejecting genetically modified organisms in food and crops, with two more countries recently joining the list: Italy and Austria.

As reported by Nation of Change, Italian ministries have opted to utilize the newly created European Union rules that permit member countries to opt out of growing GM crops. Austrian officials joined in as well, with both nations making the decision to stop growing eight varieties of GM maize, which essentially amounted to a complete ban on GM crops.

The EU’s opt-out regulations were implemented earlier this year. They allow member states to decide on their own if they want to continue using GM crops or ban them altogether.

As reported by Sustainable Pulse, a number of other countries in the EU have also opted out of GM crops:

Wales: “These new rules proposed by the European Commission provide Wales with the necessary tools to maintain our cautionary approach by allowing us to control the future cultivation of GM crops in Wales,” said Welsh Deputy Minister for Farming and Food, Rebecca Evans. “It will allow us to protect the significant investment we have made in our organic sector and safeguard the agricultural land in Wales that is managed under voluntary agri-environment schemes.”

She added: “Farming and food processing businesses remain the driving force of our rural economy. Our emphasis is on competing on quality, strong branding and adding value through local processing. We, therefore, need to preserve consumer confidence and maintain our focus on a clean, green, natural environment. ”

Poland: In 2013, the Polish government actually adopted a regulation that banned GMO farming in the country, well ahead of the EU action. But once the EU approved its regulation giving member nations the right to ban if they chose, that was more than enough authority for the Polish government to act.

“Now we no longer have to explain the scientific aspects and we can already relate to social issues,” Polish Agriculture Minister Marek Sawicki said at the time of the country’s ban.

Germany: German government officials announced in late September that the country would no longer permit the cultivation of GM crops, as stated by German Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt.

Slovenia: Slovenian Agriculture Minister Dejan Zidan said in announcing the country’s ban that “the government adopted the decision for a request for the exclusion of the entire geographical territory of Slovenia for GM maize to the EU, including the already registered variety MON 810 and seven other varieties which are in the process of registration with the European Commission. This allows me to formally send the request as the Ministry of Agriculture in accordance with the law for the exclusion of Slovenia with the regards to the cultivation of GM maize.”

Serbia: State Secretary in the Serbian Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection Danilo Golubovic recently announced the country’s GMO ban. In making the announcement, Golubovic said the decision was based on a desire to improve public health and safety.

Bulgaria: This government has decided to burnish its clean and green image by banning GM crops. As noted by Sustainable Pulse‘s director, Henry Rowlands, “Bulgaria is home to a wide variety of unique flora and fauna and is also the base of many ancient civilizations, it is with this background that Bulgarians know what is at risk when it comes to using an untested and unnecessary technology.”

European nations that have opted out of growing GM crops thus far are Latvia, France, Austria, Cyprus, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Poland, Germany, Greece, Croatia, Hungary, Slovenia and Italy, Sustainable Pulse reported.




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by Christina Sarich
Posted on October 15, 2015

EU Committee Wants to Demolish Existing Law Allowing Member States to Ban GMOs

As 19 EU nations plan GMO bans

Stating a concern that the proposed law would lead to the reintroduction of border controls between GM and non-GMO-growing countries, the European Parliament news service reported that Members of the Environment Committee shot down a draft EU law that would allow member states to restrict or prohibit sales of genetically modified crops.

This vote goes against numerous EU states that have made it clear in recent months that they plan to instate total bans on GM crops. A total of 19 EU countries have sent letters to the EP saying that they plan GM bans, citing concern over spoiling agricultural markets, and also the desire to provide their citizens with organic food.


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