Previous Pesticides & Chemicals News 2017

A Clue in the Bee Death Mystery 11-29-17

Insecticides are often blamed, but new signs point to another chemical.

Domesticated honeybees get all the buzz, but wild bumble bees are in decline too, both globally and here in the United States. What gives? It’s an important question, because while managed honeybees provide half of the pollination required by US crops, bumble and other wild bees deliver the other half.

Read more at Mother Jones


A Clue in the Bee Death Mystery 11-29-17

Insecticides are often blamed, but new signs point to another chemical.

Domesticated honeybees get all the buzz, but wild bumble bees are in decline too, both globally and here in the United States. What gives? It’s an important question, because while managed honeybees provide half of the pollination required by US crops, bumble and other wild bees deliver the other half. Read more at Mother Jones


Where Corn Is King, the Stirrings of a Renaissance in Small Grains 11-28-17

To the untrained eye, Jeremy Gustafson’s 1,600-acre farm looks like all the others spread out across Iowa. Gazing at his conventional corn and soybean fields during a visit in June, I was hard-pressed to say where his neighbor’s tightly planted row crops ended and Gustafson’s began. Read more at Yale Environment 360


California Cracks Down On Weed Killer As Lawsuits Abound 11-8-17

Jack McCall was a fixture at the local farmers market, where he sold avocados and other fruits he grew on his 20-acre ranch in Cambria, on California’s Central Coast. Read more at Kaiser Health News


California Cracks Down On Weed Killer As Lawsuits Abound 11-8-17

Jack McCall was a fixture at the local farmers market, where he sold avocados and other fruits he grew on his 20-acre ranch in Cambria, on California’s Central Coast.

The U.S. postal worker and Little League coach was “very environmentally friendly,” said Teri McCall, his wife of 41 years. He avoided chemicals, using only his tractor-mower to root out the thistle and other weeds that continually sprouted on the flat areas of the ranch. Read more at Kaiser Health News


Complaints surge about weed killer dicamba’s damage to oak trees 10-9-17

As soybean and cotton farmers across the Midwest and South continue to see their crops ravaged from the weed killer dicamba, new complaints have pointed to the herbicide as a factor in widespread damage to oak trees. Read more at Investigate Midwest


U.S. Air Force Is Spraying 6 Million Acres With Chemicals in Response to Harvey 9-12-17

Amid statewide efforts to clean up the aftermath left by the historic flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey, the Pentagon announced last week that it had dispatched C-130H Sprayers from the Air Force Reserve’s 910th Airlift Wing in order to “assist with recovery efforts in eastern Texas.” Read more at EcoWatch


Queen bees less likely to lay eggs, start colony after insecticide exposure 08-14-17

If queens don’t produce eggs or start new colonies, it is possible that bumblebees could die out.

Some queen bumblebees exposed to a common insecticide may never lay eggs or start colonies, which would lead to their extinction, researchers say. Read more at CBC News


The Poison Papers: Secret Concerns of Industry and Regulators on the Hazards of Pesticides and Other Chemicals 07-27-17

The Bioscience Resource Project and the Center for Media and Democracy released a trove of rediscovered and newly digitized chemical industry and regulatory agency documents Wednesday stretching back to the 1920s. The documents are available hereRead more at EcoWatch


What Happens When Organic Farms are Forced to Spray Conventional Pesticides? 06-21-17

One Oregon farm’s viral plea shines a national spotlight on what is usually a local debate about mandatory pesticide applications.

The plea for help from Azure Standard, a large organic farm in Central Oregon, was bound to go viral. or the government may do it for them, using the legal authority granted by local pest and weed control ordinances. Read more at Civil Eats


E.P.A. Chief, Rejecting Agency’s Science, Chooses Not to Ban Insecticide 03-29-17

Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, moved late on Wednesday to reject the scientific conclusion of the agency’s own chemical safety experts. Read more at The New York Times


Will Trump’s EPA Greenlight a Pesticide Known to Damage Kids’ Brains? 03-27-17

By Friday, President Donald Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency will have to make a momentous decision: whether to protect kids from a widely used pesticide that’s known to harm their brains—or protect the interests of the chemical’s maker, Dow AgroSciences. Read more at Mother Jones


Debunking ‘Alternative Facts’ About Pesticides and Organic Farming 03-01-17

With the growing demand for organic foods in the U.S., there has been a backlash from agribusiness groups, companies and individuals who see organic as a threat to their interests. These critics accuse the organic industry of using deceptive marketing practices to get consumers to pay more money for organic food. Read more at EcoWatch


Target’s new chemicals policy hits a bullseye 02-10-17

Starting in 2017, Target’s new chemicals strategy promises to cleanse its shelves, and the brands along its value chain, of toxic chemicals. If enacted properly, the fallout of the policy and its implementation can have lasting, positive repercussions. Read more on Green Biz


Researchers find pesticide spills, accidents may alter farmworkers’ DNA 02-16-17

Study of Iowa, North Carolina farmworkers finds high doses of pesticides can potentially impact DNA, triggering cancers later in life. Read more on Environmental Health News


‘It’s Outrageous’: EPA Acknowledges Proven Dangers of Bee-Killing Pesticides But Refuses to Restrict Them 01-13-17

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) acknowledged for the first time on Thursday that three of the nation’s most-used neonicotinoid pesticides pose significant risks to commercial honey bees. Read more on EcoWatch


Texas winegrowers fear new herbicides will wipe out industry 01-02-17

Competing against millions of acres of cotton, winegrowers fear federal approval of new herbicides to be used on genetically modified cotton seeds will wipe out the wine industry in the Texas High Plains. Read more on The Texas Tribune