Monday, May 2, 2016
Read more athttp://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2016/04/22/herbicide-its-whats-breakfast-glyphosate-bagels-organic-eggs-oatmeal-164226
Monsanto's Highly Controversial Herbicide Is Currently Being Sprayed in Five of America's Largest Urban Areas
Man in a protective suit spraying plants against pests, Disinfection, photography
Photo Credit: overcrew/Shutterstock
Photo Credit: overcrew/Shutterstock
Reverend Billy and The Stop Shopping Choir have published two new interactive maps showing where glyphosate is being sprayed in California’s Bay Area and Portland.
Based on the maps, glyphosate—the cancer-linked main ingredient in Monsanto’s weedkiller Roundup—is being used in a number of public spaces including parks and playgrounds in both cities.
According to a press release sent to EcoWatch, the Portland map displays 1,592 locations in the city where herbicides containing glyphosate are being sprayed.
“Monsanto’s Roundup and its key ingredient glyphosate are major weapons in the Portland Parks Department’s arsenal of herbicides,” the release states.
A Care2 petition has been posted to stop the use of glyphosate in Portland’s public green spaces. The campaign, which has gathered more than 17,600 signatures, seems to be picking up momentum. In recent months, Portland lawmakers have mulled over new restrictions on the use of synthetic pesticides in the city.
Meanwhile, in the city of San Francisco alone, more than 200 locations such as ball fields, libraries, playgrounds and parks are being doused with the herbicide, Inhabitat reported.
Rev. Billy’s San Francisco map was published in collaboration with the San Francisco Forest Alliance. The alliance has requested that the San Francisco Department of Environment remove Tier I and Tier II herbicides (especially Roundup/ Aquamaster and Garlon 4 Ultra) from the 2016 Reduced Risk Pesticide List, “without exceptions.”
San Francisco mother and Inhabitat editor Jill Fehrenbacher is currently petitioning for a glyphosate ban in public parks. The campaign has more than 12,000 signatures to date.
“If this sounds like just a local issue within San Francisco, it is not. Roundup/glyphosate is the most widely used herbicide in the world, and city governments, organizations and companies spray it EVERYWHERE as a cost-effective approach to weed removal,” Fehrenbacher wrote on the Change.org petition. “Glyphosate may have an important place in agriculture (another debate entirely), but a possibly-carcinogenic pesticide should not be sprayed thoughtlessly around schools and public parks for no good reason. It is too much of a gamble with our public health.”
Earlier this year, Reverend Billy and The Stop Shopping Choir released a map of New York City locations being sprayed with glyphosate. The data was obtained by the group and members of the Coalition Against Poison Parks from the New York City Parks Department.
"Monsanto’s Roundup continues to be the major weapon in the New York City parks department’s arsenal of herbicides while scientific evidence that Roundup’s key ingredient, glyphosate, is toxic approaches the level of scientific consensus,” the New York City-based group said in February. “The frequency of parks department’s use of Monsanto’s Roundup doubled since 2013 with 1,300 spraying events reported. In 2014, overall herbicides use reported by volume increased by 16 percent with a 9 percent increase in the amount of glyphosate applied by volume.”
Organizers told EcoWatch that a “National Map of Roundup City Spraying” is coming together. Glyphosate maps for Los Angeles, Oakland, Seattle and Philadelphia are currently in the pipeline.
Glyphosate, which is the most widely applied pesticide in the world, was classified as “probably carcinogenic to humans” in March 2015 by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). The organization also observed that non-Hodgkin lymphoma and other hematopoietic cancers are the cancers most associated with glyphosate exposure.
Monsanto has long maintained the safety of their product, denying the link to cancer and demanding a retraction of the IARC’s report.
Last September, California’s issued plans to add glyphosate to the state’s list of chemicals known to cause cancer, making it the first state in the country to do so. Monsanto promptly filed a lawsuit to prevent the state from doing so.
Lorraine Chow is a freelance writer and reporter based in South Carolina.
Saturday, April 30, 2016
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Monday, April 18, 2016
In a vote of unanimous and bipartisan support, the California State Assembly Committee on Veterans Affairs passed AB 2574 last week. This new CSGsponsored legislation will create
opportunities for California veterans to take-up occupations in
farming and ranching. Assemblyman, Rocky Chavez (R), a retired
Marine veteran and Colonel worked with theCSG to author the bill.
The measure moves forward to the Assembly Appropriations
Committee this week.
The bill is a landmark measure offering new incentives to California’s nearly two million veterans to become farmers and ranchers by leveraging existing state programs and resources to draw increased federal dollars and resources into California.
The 2014 United States Farm Bill included military veterans as a distinct
classification of farmers for the first time in the history of farm bills. Congress included a variety of landmark incentives to help America’s veterans returning from military service to acquire skills to start and manage a farms and ranches.
These incentives arose from recent findings by the United States Department of Agriculture that the average age of farmers across the nation is on the rise. The average age of principal farm operators is at 58.3 years, and 33% are over the age of 65.
CSG President Bob McFarland said, “Through these state and federally funded programs and resources, we will help returning veterans adapt from battlefields to farm fields.
“There is a healing benefit for soldiers working with theland. The CSG will continue to support and encourage new generations of farmers. Our future will depend on regenerative agricultural and access to an abundance of healthy foods,” McFarland added.
Assemblyman Chavez, notes, “Supporting our veterans’ ability to draw down federal money and transition into a field of such demand will create security and stability for our state’s agricultural industry and for our veterans shifting to civilian life.”
Lt. Bobby Ross, a retired veteran who served during the Tet Offensive in Viet Nam and has farmed since 2004, stated at last week’s hearing, “I do believe that farming and ranching requires so much commitment, physically and mentally, that a wounded veteran can truly benefit from it.”
In January at USDA offices in Davis, the CSG led the first-meeting of a new coalition of state organizations supporting military veterans entering farming careers. The coalition includes representatives from the USDA, Farmer Veteran Coalition, UC Davis’ CalAgrability, Cal Poly’s Veteran Sustainable Agriculture Training, California Employment Development Department, Women Veterans Alliance, National Center for Appropriate Technology and California Department of Veteran Affairs.
AB 2574 will create and strengthen incentives to help veterans returning from military service to become farmers and ranchers. These incentives include education and training, technical assistance, farm loans, and microloans to support such needs as farm equipment or other essentials.
Last year, the CSG sponsored a tour of the award-winning film Ground Operations with filmmaker Dulanie Ellis, screening the film at five granges up and down the State and at the EcoFarm Conference at Asilomar. The documentary film provides numerous examples of former combat veterans successfully becoming farmers and ranchers. Copies of the film are available through the CSG.
The Redwood Valley Grange will screen Ground Operations on Friday, April 22 at 6:30pm as part of their Earth Weekend celebration. For more information, contact Bill or Jaye at (707) 272-1688.
For more information on AB 2574, phone the CSG offices at (916) 454-5805.
The CSG is not affiliated with the National Grange or the
Grange of California’s Order of Patrons of Husbandry, Chartered.