Top Food, Farming, GMO & Eco Stories for September

October 1, 2014 by Frontline Copy

by Faith Attaguile

Top Food, Farming, GMO & Eco Headlines for June

attribution (c) Can Stock Photo

Stay on top with our top-story picks for September!
From the discovery of GMO wheat on a Montana farm
to the #FloodWallStreet climate action march in NYC, take a look:

 

Local Food, Farming and CommunityLocal Food, Farming & Community

Does Organic Make Food Better For You?

From FoodTank.org: Organic and agroecological farming methods typically build healthier soils, produce less pollution, and protect ecosystems better than conventional cultivation methods. However, scientists have only recently discovered that organic products are also better for eaters.

This 2,000 Hectare Farm in the Desert Feeds Most of Jordan

By using a combination of ancient and modern farming techniques, this farm in the Wadi Rum provides much of the food consumed in Jordan.

How Industrial Ag is Making the Soil--and Us—Unhealthy

From OrganicConsumers.org: Does an apple a day really keep the doctor away? Not anymore, according to soil health experts—unless the apple comes from a tree grown in healthy, organic soil.

Factory-Farm Workers Found to Carry High Levels of Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

From TakePart.com: Drug-resistant staph was found in nearly half of the people tested for a new study.

The drought is destroying California’s organic dairy farms

From Grist.org: This is Part 1 of a two-part series about California’s organic dairy industry. Read Part 2 here.

The Other CSA: What Is Climate-Smart Agriculture?

From ModernFarmer.com: Climate-smart agriculture could be the only way to feed our planet as climate change makes it impossible for us to farm the way we do now. But what is it?

Here’s a Drought Solution: Just Stop Watering Your Crops

From ModernFarmer.com: The agricultural enclave of Clovis, New Mexico (population 37,775) has proposed a radical response to the state’s ongoing drought crisis: pay farmers to stop irrigating their crops.

LA Startup Brings Custom Farming Service to Homes, Businesses

From SustainableCitiesCollective.com: Farmscape Gardens is California’s largest urban farming company, bringing edible gardens to residential and commercial customers alike.

 

EnvironmentEnvironment

Radioactive wild boar roaming the forests of Germany

From TheTelegraph.co.uk: Tests by the state government of Saxony show that more than one in three wild boars gave off such high levels of radiation, thought to be a legacy of Chernobyl, that they were unfit for human consumption.

Scientists: The American Southwest Faces a “Megadrought”

From ModernFarmer.com: This will be worse than anything seen during the last 2,000 years.

Canadian Beekeepers Launch Class Action Suit Against Pesticide Makers

From CommonDreams.org: "It was time to get serious and go after the real villains — the companies profiting from the ecological mayhem."

Epigenetics: genes, environment and the generation game

From TheGuardian.com: New research claims that environmental factors affect not just an individual's genes but those of their offspring too. Diabetes, obesity – even certain phobias – may all be influenced by the behaviour of our forebears.

Canadian Beekeepers Sue Neonicotinoid Makers Bayer, Syngenta for C$450 Million

From BloombergBNA.com: Canadian beekeepers have filed a class action lawsuit against Bayer CropScience Inc. and Syngenta Canada Inc. claiming C$450 million ($414 million) in damages for negligence related to the use of neonicotinoid insecticides.

How Roundup® Poisoned my Nature Reserve

From I-SIS.org.uk: A personal witness to the devastating demise of wild pollinators and other species as glyphosate herbicides increase in the environment.

Will green chemistry save us from toxification?

From TheGuardian.com: A swath of green chemistry initiatives could revolutionise the industry but just taking the toxic stuff out isn’t the answer, ingredients and design need to change.

 

GMO: Content and ControversyGMOs: Content & Controversy

German Supermarket Giants Demand Return to GMO-Free Fed Poultry

From Cornucopia.org: Germany’s top supermarkets, the powerhouses of Europe when it comes to retail, have delivered a blow to the biotech industry by forcing the German poultry industry to return to the use of non-GMO feed.

GMO experiments receive questionable oversight

From SFGate.com: Details of Applied Biotechnology's inspections and hundreds of other field trials with genetically modified plants present a picture of vast, swiftly expanding outdoor experimentation and industry-friendly oversight of those experiments.

Costa Rican court hands GMO opponents a victory by declaring permitting process unconstitutional

From TicoTimes.net: Costa Rica’s Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court, strikes down the government’s regulatory framework on genetically modified organisms, declaring the approval process for GMO projects unconstitutional.

Ukraine opens up for Monsanto, land grabs and GMOs

From TheEcologist.org: World Bank and IMF loan has opened up Ukraine to major corporate inroads, writes Joyce Nelson. Loan conditions are forcing the deeply indebted country to open up to GMO crops, and lift the ban on private sector land ownership.

Is Monsanto Admitting Guilt in ‘Zombie’ GMO Wheat Settlement?

From TakePart.com: Details are sketchy on the reported settlement between the biotech giant and Oregon farmers.

Syngenta faces second lawsuit over GMO corn rejected by China

From Reuters.com: A second company has sued Syngenta AG over sales of genetically modified corn seed not approved by China, raising the stakes for the Swiss-based seed maker by including byproducts used for animal feed in its complaint and seeking class-action status.

New Generation of GM Crops Puts Agriculture in a ‘Crisis Situation’

From Wired.com: With the first of a new generation of genetically engineered crops ready to hit the market, the battle lines are being drawn.

GMO Crops Accelerate Herbicide and Insecticide Use While Mainstream Media Gets It Wrong

From EcoWatch.com: Michael Specter’s recent articles bashing Vandana Shiva and the labeling of genetically engineered foods in the New Yorker (Seeds of Doubt and The Problem with G.M.O. Labels) are the latest high-profile pro-GMO articles that fail to engage with the fundamental critique of genetically engineered food crops in U.S. today.

Second Discovery of GMO Wheat Reveals 'Failed Policy' That Threatens Farmers: Watchdog

From CommonDreams.org: USDA says genetically engineered wheat discovered on Montana farm.

 

Economy

Limits to Growth was right. New research shows we're nearing collapse

From TheGuardian.com: Four decades after the book was published, Limit to Growth’s forecasts have been vindicated by new Australian research. Expect the early stages of global collapse to start appearing soon.

Widening gap between US rich and poor is unsustainable, says study

From TheGuardian.com: Harvard study says situation unlikely to improve soon. Workers expected to keep struggling for better pay.

This Changes Everything: Naomi Klein Is Right, Unchecked Capitalism Will Destroy Civilization

Klein’s new book “tackles the most profound threat humanity has ever faced: the war our economic model is waging against life on earth.”

 

Renewable Energy Climate ChangeEnergy/Climate Change

Pipeline Giant Handed Permit to Open Tar Sands Rail Facility

From EcoWatch.com: the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission hands tar sands-carrying corporate pipeline giant Enbridge a permit to open a tar sands-by-rail facility in Flanagan, Illinois by early 2016.

Residents Worry Urban Drilling Will Turn Downtowns Into Oil Towns

From NPR.org: Dawn Gioia lives just two blocks away from City Hall in Brighton, Colo., just north of Denver. She never expected to receive a thick envelope from Mid-Continent Energy in the mail, proposing she sell mineral rights for oil and gas drilling.

Nova Scotia To Ban Fracking: ‘We Need To Respect The Trust The People Have Put In Us’

From ThinkProgress.org: Nova Scotia plans to introduce legislation to ban fracking this fall, Energy Minister Andrew Younger announced Wednesday.

Report Says ‘Green’ Businesses Donate Millions to Congressional Climate Deniers

Many large corporations like to present a green public face, embracing the image of a good environmental steward, but some donate lavishly to Congressional members who deny the reality of climate change.

How 2 Guys, A Lobster Boat, And A District Attorney Just Made Climate History

From ThinkProgress.org: Rhode Island Bristol County District Attorney Sam Sutter drops charges against two men who blocked a 40,000-ton shipment of coal from reaching New England’s largest power station last May.

Major Foundations and Investors, Including Heirs to Oil Fortune, Pledge Fossil Fuel Divesment

From CommonDreams.org: $50 billion in assets will be removed from the fossil fuel sector and placed in clean energy investments.

“Beautiful”: 400,000 March in NYC for Climate Action

From CommonDreams.org: Demanding environmental justice, a clean economy, and government leadership, hundreds of thousands participate in People's Climate March.

Save the Climate or Save Capitalism: Dispatch From #FloodWallStreet

From Occupy.com: The People’s Climate March momentum spilled over into a massive direct action the next day. Over 3,000 people shut down Broadway between Exchange Place and the iconic Wall Street Bull for eight hours, just one day ahead of the 2014 UN Climate meeting.

 

Carbon Neutral and Sustainable Are Simply Not Enough

From EcoWatch.com: This week, there were thousands of academics, diplomats, lobbyists and pundits converging on New York for the United Nations emergency Climate Summit. Unfortunately, they were all arguing about the wrong topic.

Public Pressure Forces Tar Sands Waste Operator Out Of Chicago

From ThinkProgress.org: An operator in charge of storing petroleum coke, a dirty byproduct of tar sands refining, has announced it’s leaving the city of Chicago, and taking the black, dusty piles with it.

West Virginia Plans To Frack Beneath Ohio River, Which Supplies Drinking Water To Millions

From ThinkProgress.org: Nine citizen and environmental groups are urging West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to reconsider his plans to let companies drill for oil and natural gas underneath the Ohio River.

 

business sustainabilityThe Rocky Road to Business Sustainability

Florida's sugar barons grow fat on subsidies, diabetes and Everglades destruction

From TheEcologist.com: Big Sugar is the new Tobacco.

Apple Faces Pollution Charges — Again

From EnvironmentalLeader.com: An Apple supplier in China making iPhone and iPad parts violated a number of health and safety, environmental and human rights laws, according to a report released by China Labor Watch and Green America.

Chiquita Sued For Deceptive Sustainability Claims

From TriplePundit.com: One aspect of our world that has undisputedly changed is the increased transparency and availability of information. This makes it harder for companies and politicians to get away with making false claims.

Are sustainability reports driving change or just 'losing the signal'?

From TheGuardian.com: The avalanche of corporate sustainability information makes it hard to separate the wheat from the chaff – or the vitally important from the merely interesting.

Fungus Could Be the Key to Avoiding a Global Food Crisis

Adaptive Symbiotic Technologies, founded in 2008, has developed an organic seed treatment called BioEnsure that allows agricultural crops like rice and corn to withstand severe droughts and extreme temperatures.

SolarCity to Build PV ‘Gigafactory’ in Buffalo

From TriplePundit.com: Hot on the heels of Tesla announcing it will build its lithium-ion battery ‘Gigafactory’ in Nevada, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a groundbreaking ceremony for an equally massive SolarCity facility in Buffalo.

Grow more food with less water? There's an app for that

From TheGuardian.com: With nearly 3 billion people already facing water scarcity, farmers look to both tech and tradition for ways to grow more food with less of an increasingly strained resource.

 

Do you have any suggestions for additions to this list? If so, let me know what they are so we can develop a monthly headlines resource base for everyone to use.

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