Category: Environment

Ridiculous! “EU declared Monsanto weedkiller safe after intervention from controversial US official” | The Guardian

GOOD: A Few Things to Remind People Quoting That Organic Food Study

FINALLY!! Some sensible comments about THAT organic food study. Yes, the one all those websites were  posting and reposting and copying from one another about yesterday:

Whoa, slow down, internet and television news! Man, one document says organic food might not be worth the dollar and you’d think an organic vegetable had held up a bank.

and

The studies that the review looked at were small….Nutrients are only part of the equation…Highly quoted was that the conventional diet mostly fell within allowed limits for pesticides. Here’s what you should know: The EPA sets these limits…The review was inconclusive.

Read more from Good,

Same FUD, Different Site: io9 – “No, organic foods aren’t more nutritious than other kinds”

In their “Debunkary” section, io9 follows along NPR‘s footsteps and posts an article about how ORGANIC FOODS ARE NOT MORE NUTRITIOUS!! [ that’s me shouting to present my sarcastic shock and awe ].  They even claim that “A recent study suggests the $27 billion organic food industry is based on a myth.

OK, ok. I get it. They need a shock headline to get people to click onto their page, see the Ads, click on Ads, make money, blah, blah, blah, etc.

But come on…I’m getting the feeling that these “bloggers” are getting paid by Monsanto.

In the article, they say [emphasis mine]:

But what the researchers did discover was that lower pesticide levels could be detected among children who ate organic foods compared to those on conventional diets. The researchers found that organic produce is 30% less likely to be contaminated with pesticides than conventional fruits and vegetables — but they cautioned that the differences in biomarkers and nutrient levels in serum, urine, breast milk, and semen in adults were not “clinically meaningful.”

But earlier in the article, they note [again emphasis mine]:

It’s important to note that, for the clinical trials, the researchers did not look into any long-term studies of health outcomes of people eating organic versus conventionally produced foods. At most, the duration of the trials ranged from two days to two years.

Trials that only ranged from two days to two years! What I would like to know, what none of the articles mention, is how many people took part in the studies. For all we know, it could have been 240 studies, with only two people to each study for a total of 480 test subjects – a low number to garner an meaningful data from.

Classic FUD.

WTF of the Day! 400 Trees Cut Down To Make Way For Space Shuttle

So they can get the Space Shuttle into outer Space, dodging satellites, space junk, and rocks, but they can’t figure out how to get around some trees!

From the LATimes:

Space shuttle Endeavour’s final 12-mile journey through the streets of South Los Angeles [ to the The California Science Center ] already promises to be a meticulously planned spectacle: a two-day parade, an overnight slumber party in Inglewood and enough hoopla to create a giant traffic mess.

But for some residents in South L.A., the excitement of the shuttle rumbling through their neighborhoods quickly faded when they learned that 400 trees will be chopped down to make room for the behemoth.

Are you freakin’ kidding me? They couldn’t figure out a better way? I can’t believe a “Science Center” would even agree to that…

FUD of the Day: NPR – Why Organic Food May Not Be Healthier For You

Here’s your FUD for the day – courtesy of NPR no less – Why Organic Food May Not Be Healthier For You

Yes, organics is a $29 billion dollar industry, and still growing. Something is pulling us toward those organic veggies that are grown without synthetic pesticides or fertilizers.

But if you’re thinking that organic produce will help you stay healthier, a new finding may come as a surprise. A new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine finds scant evidence of health benefits from organic foods.

Come on NPR – what a misleading title.

As you might expect, there was less pesticide contamination on organic produce. But does that matter? The authors of the new study say probably not. They found that the vast majority of conventionally grown food did not exceed allowable limits of pesticide residue set by federal regulations.

What kind of nonsense is that? It probably takes about 10 years for the pesticides accumulating in our body to show any effects. At which point it might be too late. Organic Food is waaay healthier. No doubt. You, NPR, can have your federally set limit on allowable pesticide residue. I will do without it. I can’t control what’s in the air I breath, but I can control what I put into my body.

Japan Sets Radiation Standards For Fish

So what happens when you dump radioactive toxic water into the ocean? The fishes become radioactive! And how do you get people to eat radioactive fish? Set a standard that says how much radiation in fish is OK!

Which is what Japan is doing:

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano says the government will apply the maximum allowable radiation limit for vegetables to fish.

The move came after the health ministry reported that fish caught off Ibaraki prefecture — which is about halfway between the plant and Tokyo — contained levels of radioactive iodine that exceeded the new legal limit. Cesium was also found just below the limit. The fish were caught Friday, before the safety limit was announced Tuesday.

Please. No level of radio active material inside the body is safe. The TEPCO folks are saying the radiation in the water will dissipate. What they don’t tell you is that the little radioactive fish you just ate will continue to give off radiation inside your body.

UN report – Humans must change behaviour to save bees, vital for food production

Meanwhile the increasing use of chemicals in agriculture is being found to damage bees, weakening their immune systems, with laboratory studies showing that some insecticides and fungicides can act together to be 1,000 times more toxic to bees. They can also affect the sense of direction, memory and brain metabolism, and herbicides and pesticides may reduce the availability of plants bees need for food and for the larval stages of some pollinators.

Seriously? Who really thinks that Big Agribusiness companies care about the bee population? It doesn’t matter what you or I think. They will continue using insecticides for their crops. I sadly predict that bees will no longer be part of this Earth in 15 years…

Humans must change behaviour to save bees, vital for food production – UN report.