Posted on March 1, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Pesticide pollution hotspots are identified in a new map.
Global warming could exacerbate pesticide woes
FRISCO — The world has a long way to go to come to grips with pesticide pollution say scientists who recently created a global map showing which areas are most susceptible.
Their modeling suggests that streams across about 40 percent of the planet’s surface are at risk from the application of insecticides, with the Mediterranean region, the USA, Central America and Southeast Asia among the hotspots.
On average, farmers apply about 4 million tons of agricultural pesticides annually, equating to an average of 0.27 kilograms per hectare of the global land surface. Continue reading
Filed under: Environment, rivers, water, water quality | Tagged: agriculture, Environment, pesticides, pollution | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 9, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
A ladybug enjoys a leisurely stroll in an organic corn field.
Court challenge aimed at protecting whooping cranes, endangered bats
FRISCO — Hoping to forestall a DDT-type disaster, environmental groups and farmers last week moved to block the EPA’s approval of a new herbicide that could threaten endangered species.
In a federal court, the groups said the approval violates the Endangered Species Act because the EPA failed to consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regarding the impact of Enlist Duo on two endangered species in those states, the whooping crane and the Indiana bat. Continue reading
Filed under: agriculture, biodiversity, endangered species, Environment | Tagged: agriculture, Dow, endangered species, Enlist Duo, Environment, EPA, herbicides, Indiana bats, Monsanto, pesticides, whooping cranes | Leave a comment »
Posted on December 10, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Honeybees may get some relief from deadly pesticides.
Conservation advocates hopeful that agency will propose new restrictions
FRISCO — Conservation advocates say the EPA may be close to cracking down on systemic neonicotinoid pesticides suspected of playing a key role in the decline of honeybees.
According to Friends of the Earth, a top EPA regulator discussed the agency’s stance on neonicotinoids at a Dec. 8 meeting of state pesticide regulators. The agency was charged with assessing the effects of the pesticides under June 2014 presidential memorandum.
At this point, there is no formal proposal for new pesticide restrictions, which would come in the form of a proposed rule subject to public input. Continue reading
Filed under: agriculture, biodiversity, Environment | Tagged: EPA, honeybee decline, neonicotinoids, pesticides, pollinator crisis | Leave a comment »
Posted on November 24, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Scientists call on President Obama to directly address neonicotinoids pesticide impacts to bees. bberwyn photo.
‘Body of science’ shows harmful impacts
FRISCO — Environmental activists and scientists are convinced that neonicotinoid and other systemic pesticides are the main cause of rapidly declining bee populations across the U.S. and this week, they directly asked President Obama to address the pesticide threat.
More than 100 scientists from different fields signed on to a new letter calling on leaders of President Barack Obama’s Pollinator Health Task Force to take action on pesticides to protect and promote healthy populations of bees and other pollinators. Continue reading
Filed under: agriculture, biodiversity, Environment | Tagged: Environment, honey bee colony collapse, honeybee decline, neonicotinoids, pesticides, systemic pesticides | 1 Comment »
Posted on October 24, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Activists challenge EPA approval of new herbicides.
Chemical-agricultural death spiral continues …
FRISCO — A coalition of farmers and environmental groups claim the EPA didn’t adequately analyze the human health and environmental impacts of a powerful new herbicide before authorizing for use on genetically engineered corn and soybean crops.
Activists said they will sue the agency over the approval, explaining that use of Dow’s Enlist Duo, a blend of glyphosate and 2,4-D, will only foster more weed resistance.
“The voices of independent family farmers are being drowned out by the revolving door of corporate and government agency heads,” said Mississippi farmer Ben Burkett. “It’s time for our government to pay attention to the farmer concerns about the negative impacts of herbicide-resistant GMO on our food supply,” said Burkett, president of the National Family Farm Coalition. Continue reading
Filed under: Environment | Tagged: 2, 4-D, Enlist Duo, Environment, EPA, genetically engineered crops, glysophate, herbicides, pesticides | 1 Comment »
Posted on September 17, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
About half the nation’s streams are polluted by pesticides at a level of concern for aquatic life.
90 percent of urban streams show signs of contamination
FRISCO — A huge number of rivers and streams around the country are still polluted with pesticides that can kill bugs and other aquatic organisms at the base of the food chain.
Streams in agricultural areas are polluted at about the same level as they were 1990s, but pesticide pollution is increasing in urban streams, according to a U.S. Geological Survey study spanning about 20 years. Continue reading
Filed under: agriculture, Environment, rivers, water, water quality | Tagged: Environment, pesticides, pollution, water quality | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 9, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
How do pesticides affect wildlife? We’ll know more after a court-ordered environmental study.
Legal settlement requires agency to analyze effects of 5 common pesticides
FRISCO — Under legal pressure from conservation advocates, the EPA last week agreed to take a hard look at how five commonly used pesticides affect endangered animals across the U.S.
One of the pesticides is carbaryl, commonly used in massive quantities in Colorado to try and protect trees from bark beetles. The other pesticides to be reviewed are chlorpyrifos, diazinon, malathion and methomyl. All have all been found to be toxic to wildlife and may pose a health risk to humans. Continue reading
Filed under: agriculture, biodiversity, endangered species, Environment, global amphibian decline | Tagged: carbaryl, endangered species, Environment, EPA, pesticides | 5 Comments »