Farmers are currently participating in what is likely to be one of the largest deployments of insecticides in United States history as the planting season for corn and soybeans draws to a close. Professor JOHN F TOOKER asks what impact this may have on the ecosystem
The government of Hawaii - once a defender of the GM corn industry - has passed a law that forces agro-chemical companies to disclose what pesticides they spray. It has also become the first US state to ban the chlorpyrifos, which has been linked to brain damage in babies. Christopher Pala reports
Bee-killing insecticides will face a near total ban in Europe following a vote by member states in favour of proposals by the European Commission. The UK government supported the ban, which it says it will maintain after Brexit. CATHERINE EARLY reports
Claims by pro-pesticide groups that pesticide use has halved in the UK since 1990 are 'misleading' since they do not reflect the higher toxicity of modern products, according to campaigners. CATHERINE EARLY investigates
A planned nickel mine in Madagasca has led to numerous environmental problems, and whilst the mine continues to struggle the environmental concerns surrounding the project continue to grow. LAURENCE SOUSTRAS investigates.
Traces of 123 pesticides, including those linked to cancer, hormone disruption and damage to brain development, have been found in fresh produce supplied to primary school children through a government scheme aimed at promoting healthy eating habits. CATHERINE EARLY reports
Bees in Britain are looking enviously at their EU neighbours. The EU is set to extend a ban on neonicotinoid pesticides - but agri-chemical lobbyists have the ear of pro-Brexit Tories, argues Molly Scott Cato MEP. The member of the European Parliament’s Agricultural Committee responds to our report in The Ecologist on Friday about new corporate funded research confirming the threat to bees. She argues it is now time to redouble our efforts to protect our vital pollinators.
A 2001 study that showed that glyphosate caused cancer in mice was ignored by the EFSA after the unsubstantiated allegation of a former US-EPA official that the mice used in the study were suffering from a viral infection that might have given them cancer, writes Claire Robinson. The EFSA failed to properly investigate the allegation, which appears to originate in a document linked to Monsanto, maker of the world's top-selling herbicide, glyphosate-based Roundup.
Has Monsanto, dubbed the 'world's most evil corporation', turned a new leaf? It has taken the 'probably carcinogenic' glyphosate out of a new version of its market leading 'Roundup' herbicide, and replaced it with vinegar. The bad news is it's only available in Austria. That, and it may still contain toxic 'adjuvants' to increase its effectiveness.
It's barely mentioned in the election campaign or reported in the media. But a powerful faction of Tory ministers, ex-ministers and backbench MPs are bent on using Brexit to ignite a massive bonfire of 'spirit-crushing' laws on wildlife protection, air and water pollution, pesticides, renewable energy and public health, writes Brendan Montague. At risk are not just EU directives and regulations but even the UK's own Climate Change Act. May's Brexit may not just be hard, but very, very dirty.
Five international judges say Monsanto's activities have negatively affected individuals, communities and biodiversity, writes Claire Robinson. The Monsanto Tribunal's damning ruling denounces the company's harmful impacts on food sovereignty, agricultural production, access to nutrition, the natural environment, seed diversity, climate change, pollution and traditional cultural practices.
A new study sets out the huge benefits of organic farming to people and the environment, writes Peter Melchett, including more wildlife, healthier consumers and farm workers, lower greenhouse gas emissions, reduced soil erosion and increased water retention. We need more of it, fast!
They promote GMOs, defend toxic chemicals, and attack people who raise concerns about those products as 'anti-science'. But behind the slick 'astroturf' PR fronts lurk some very dubious funders: the same arch-conservative foundations that finance climate science denial. Stacy Malkan exposes the key players in the agribusiness and chemical industry propaganda wars.
The mass poisoning of farm animals in Kent in 1963 was traced to a factory where a pesticide developed as a WWII chemical warfare agent was manufactured, writes John Clark. The event, so close to the publication of Rachel Carson's 'Silent Spring', galvanised a growing ecological awareness - all the more so as the government's only wish was to hush the matter up.
Letters from an EPA toxicologist to the EPA official in charge of assessing whether glyphosate, the active ingredient of Monsanto's Roundup herbicide, causes cancer, reveal accusations of 'staff intimidation' and 'political conniving games with the science' to favour pesticide corporations, writes Carey Gillam. Could this be a game-changer for cancer-suffering plaintiffs?
At what point are technologies so complex, uncertain, or unmanageable as to be beyond regulation? The question is key to human and ecological health, writes Jonatham Latham. But instead of learning from successful approaches, such as aviation safety, we are throwing the lessons away when faced with truly complex problems - like chemicals, GMOs, and now 'gene drives'.
It's been another disastrous year for North America's Monarch butterflies, with the insect's population down 27% in a single year. The sudden decline is blamed on severe winter storms in Mexico, and the impacts of GMO crops, herbicides and insecticides on US farms.
After leaving the EU the government could allow dangerous pesticides banned elsewhere in Europe to be used in the UK, writes Keith Tyrell. Today, Pesticides Action Network is launching a new campaign calling on citizens to fight back against the pesticide industry - and ensure that EU directives and regulations serve as a baseline for British pesticide laws.