“There are a number of grave ecological crises nagging at the status quo of modern life. Though the corporate media prefers not to cover the enduring impact of events like Fukushima, the Deepwater Horizon or Honeybee Colony Collapse Disorder, the truth remains that these issues are vastly more important than most of the things we concern ourselves with.
The honey bee is unique in the animal kingdom for its critical importance to both the environment and the economy. Without the bee, the variety and amount of food for human consumption would drop dramatically and the many industries built around bee products would collapse.
The global decline in honey bee populations is attributed to a varying combination of 6 primary factors:
1. Viruses and infections
2. Attacks by parasites and invasive species
3. Genetically modified plants
4. Poor nutrition
5. Environmental change and habitat fragmentation and loss
6. Intensive use of agricultural pesticides
Right now worldwide bee colony collapse is accelerating at alarming rates, and beekeepers are expecting one of the worst years ever.”
Via Activist Post
Monsanto drags over 400 U.S. farmers to court over GM seed patents: When will Big Ag’s corrupt reign end?
“Agri-giant Monsanto, not satisfied with being one of the world’s largest agricultural corporations, is dragging hundreds of U.S. farmers into court over alleged copyright violations for repeated usage of the company’s patented seeds.
In a case that has surprised a lot of observers, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear one of these complaints on Feb. 19. That case, Bowman v. Monsanto Co., was billed as a landmark battle pitting farmer Vernon Bowman against the international Ag-giant over the former’s repeated use of seeds he bought from Monsanto which the company says are only supposed to be used for one growing season.
In advance of the case, The Huffington Post reported, the Center for Food Safety and the Save Our Seeds campaigning organizations released a report detailing similar cases.”
Via Natural News
” Some farmers across the United States may stop planting genetically modified crops after poor yields are increasing costs beyond what they can absorb.
According to Farmers Weekly, those farmers are considering returning to conventional seed after increased pest resistance and crop failures have meant smaller GM crop yields over non-GM counterparts.
Farmers in the U.S. pay about $100 more per acre for GM seed. Many have begun questioning “whether they will continue to see benefits from using GMs,” the farmer’s publication reported.
“It’s all about cost benefit analysis,” economist Dan Basse, president of AgResource, an American agricultural research firm, said.
“Farmers are paying extra for the technology but have seen yields which are no better than 10 years ago,” he told the Weekly. “They’re starting to wonder why they’re spending extra money on the technology.”"
Via Natural News
Are Honeybees Losing Their Way? A combo of pesticides takes a toll on their memory and communication skills
“A single honeybee visits hundreds, sometimes thousands, of flowers a day in search of nectar and pollen. Then it must find its way back to the hive, navigating distances up to five miles (eight kilometers), and perform a “waggle dance” to tell the other bees where the flowers are.
A new study shows that long-term exposure to a combination of certain pesticides might impair the bee’s ability to carry out its pollen mission.
“Any impairment in their ability to do this could have a strong effect on their survival,” said Geraldine Wright, a neuroscientist at Newcastle University in England and co-author of a new study posted online February 7, 2013, in the Journal of Experimental Biology.
Wright’s study adds to the growing body of research that shows that the honeybee’s ability to thrive is being threatened. Scientists are still researching how pesticides may be contributing to colony collapse disorder (CCD), a rapid die-off seen in millions of honeybees throughout the world since 2006.”
“The monarch butterfly is yet another species that appears to be in rapid decline due to the rise in herbicide-resistant genetically modified (GM) crops. These butterflies lay eggs on milkweed plants, and once the eggs hatch, monarch caterpillars feed exclusively on the weed. Yet, the overuse of Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide across millions of acres of Roundup Ready crops is believed to be destroying the milkweed necessary for monarch butterflies to thrive.
Cornell University was the first to raise attention to the harm that GM crops may have on these vivacious creatures, claiming that toxic pollen from GM corn would drift onto milkweed, poisoning monarch caterpillars and butterflies. Cornell’s research was criticized, and the United States National Academy of Sciences claimed that GM corn posed no risk to populations of monarch butterflies, as the amount of pollen that travels from GM corn onto milkweed was not sufficient to harm the caterpillars. “
Via Activist Post
“A U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) committee dominated by representatives from the biotechnology industry, seed companies, and academia has decided to make an official recommendation to the public agency that organic farmers be forced to bear financially responsible for the genetic contamination of their own organic crops by genetically-modified (GM) crops.
The USDA Advisory Committee on Biotechnology & 21st Century Agriculture, also known as AC21, is largely of the persuasion that agricultural coexistence means organic farmers should have to foot the bill when their fields are destroyed by unintentional GMO drift. According to an advisory report recently issued by the committee, this means requiring that organic farmers purchase their own crop insurance to pay for potential damages resulting from transgenic contamination.
“Of particular concern in the report is the recommendation that organic and non-GE conventional farmers pay to self-insure themselves against unwanted GE contamination,” said a recent statement issued by the National Organic Coalition (NOC). “This proposal allows USDA and the agricultural biotechnology industry to abdicate responsibility for preventing GE contamination while making the victims of GE pollution pay for damages resulting from transgenic contamination.”"
Via Natural News
“When asked by a skeptical friend why you buy organic, do you find yourself tongue-tied? Was it obesity? Or thyroid problems? Why should you buy organic? There are numerous reasons to skip the mainstream supermarket food and shop at an organic grocer, but just one of those reasons revolves around the effects of pesticides.
Unfortunately, pesticides attack your body on several fronts. Keep this list handy the next time you find yourself wondering if you should buy a carton of conventional strawberries rather than organic to potentially save a few pennies. Remember that all of the following conditions will cost you much more than money; the effects of pesticides will cost you your health.
Here are 7 nasty and crazy effects of pesticides.”
Via Activist Post
The evil of Monsanto and GMOs explained: Bad technology, endless greed and the destruction of humanity
“By now, nearly all informed people recognize that Monsanto is widely regarded as the most evil corporation on our planet. But what, exactly, makes Monsanto so evil? Why is Monsanto worse than a pharmaceutical company, a pesticide company or even a weapons manufacturer?
The answer to this question is found in probing the virtue of the corporation in question. As virtuous people, we expect corporations to act with a sense of fundamental human decency. We expect them to behave within the boundaries of respecting human life, honest business practices and reliable science. We (naively) wish that corporations would act like decent human beings.
But they don’t. In their quest for profit at any cost, they violate the basic tenants of virtue. They betray humanity. They destroy life. They malign Mother Nature herself, and in doing so, they threaten the very future of sustainable life on our planet.
Here, I unravel the fundamental “violations of virtue” that Monsanto practices on a daily basis. It is these things, I think you’ll agree, that make Monsanto a despicable corporate entity and a threat to all humankind.”
via Natural News
“A significant health freedom victory has taken place in the European nation of Poland, where all plantings of Monsanto’s MON810, a genetically-modified (GM) variety of maize (corn) that produces its own built-in Bt insecticide in every kernel, have been officially banned.
The decision comes after thousands of protesters recently took to the streets in demonstration of the undeniable fact that both MON810 and the chemicals applied to it are at least partially responsible for causing Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), the worldwide phenomenon in which entire swarms of honey bees disappear or turn up dead.
“The decree is in the works. It introduces a complete ban on the MON810 strain of maize in Poland,” said Polish Agriculture Minister Marek Sawicki, who also explained to the press that pollen from MON810 appears to be responsible for further devastating the already dwindling bee population throughout the country and elsewhere.”
Via Natural News