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All British children have plutonium in their teeth, from Sellafield nuclear plant

By Antony Barnett | The Guardian | November 30, 2003

The Government has admitted for the first time that Sellafield ‘is a source of plutonium contamination’ across the country. Public Health Minister Melanie Johnson has revealed that a study funded by the Department of Health discovered that the closer a child lived to Sellafield, the higher the levels of plutonium found in their teeth.

Johnson said: ‘Analysis indicated that concentrations of plutonium… decreased with increasing distance from the west Cumbrian coast and its Sellafield nuclear fuel reprocessing plant – suggesting this plant is a source of plutonium contamination in the wider population.’ Johnson claimed the levels of plutonium are so minute that there is no health risk to the public. But this is disputed by scientists, MPs and environmental campaigners who have called for an immediate inquiry into how one of the world’s most dangerous materials has been allowed to continue to contaminate children’s teeth. There have long been claims of clusters of childhood leukaemia around Sellafield.

In the late 1990s researchers collected more than 3,000 molars extracted from young teenagers across the country during dental treatment and analysed them. To their surprise they found traces of plutonium in all the teeth including those from children in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Alarmingly, they discovered that those living closer to Sellafield had more than twice the amount of those living 140 miles away.

Plutonium is a man-made radioactive material and the only source of it in Britain is from Sellafield. The plant, which reprocesses nuclear fuel from reactors, still discharges plutonium into the Irish Sea.

The original research was carried out in 1997 by Professor Nick Priest who was working for the UK Atomic Energy Authority. At the time the conclusions of the research received little attention because the study concluded that the contamination levels were so minuscule they were thought to pose an ‘insignificant’ health risk.

But earlier this year the Committee Examining Radiation Risks from Internal Emitters, looking at health risks posed by radioactive materials, examined Priest’s study. Some of the committee’s members have now cast doubt on the conclusions that plutonium in children’s teeth posed no health risk. Professor Eric Wright, of Dundee University Medical School, is one of the country’s leading experts on blood disorders and a member of the committee. He believes that the tiny specks of plutonium in children’s teeth caused by Sellafield radioactive pollution might lead to some people falling ill with cancer.

He said: ‘There are genuine concerns that the risks from internal emitters of radiation are more hazardous [than previously thought]. The real question is by how much. Is it two or three times more risky… or more than a hundred?’

Wright believes that, while the plutonium contamination is unlikely to pose a health risk to much of the British population, it might be a problem for some individuals.

He said: ‘If somebody has a bad collection of genes which means their body cannot deal with small levels of internal radioactive material, then there could be an issue.’

Wright’s comments, coming on top of the admission from the Health Minister, have led to calls for an independent inquiry. Liberal Democrat environment spokesman Norman Baker said: ‘[This] stinks of a cover-up. They have known for six years that Sellafield has contaminated the population with plutonium but done nothing. Yet the plant continues to discharge plutonium into the Irish Sea. It shows the wanton disregard the nuclear industry has for public health and there needs to be an independent inquiry.’

Janine Allis-Smith of the campaign group Cumbrians Opposed to a Radioactive Environment said: ‘There is no safe amount of plutonium. The plant must be closed down immediately.’

May 30, 2021 Posted by | Environmentalism, Militarism, Nuclear Power, Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

Joe Biden’s Offshore Wind Energy Mirage

The reality is a lot of turbines, not much energy.

By Craig Rucker | Real Clear Energy | May 6, 2021

President Biden recently announced ambitious plans to install huge offshore industrial wind facilities along America’s Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Pacific coasts. His goal is to churn out 30 gigawatts (30,000 megawatts) of wind capacity by 2030, ensuring the U.S. “leads by example” in fighting the “climate crisis.”

Granted “30 by 2030” is clever PR. But what are the realities?

The only existing U.S. offshore wind operation features five 6-MW turbines off Rhode Island. Their combined capacity (what they could generate if they worked full-bore, round the clock 24/7) is 30 MW. Mr. Biden is planning 1,000 times more offshore electricity, perhaps split three ways: 10,000 MW for each coast.

While that might sound impressive, it isn’t.  It means total wind capacity for the entire Atlantic coast, under Biden’s plan, would only meet three-fourths of the peak summertime electricity needed to power New York City.  Again, this assumes the blades are fully spinning 24/7. In reality, such turbines would be lucky to be operating a top capacity half the time. Even less as storms and salt spray corrode the turbines, year after year.

The reason why is there is often minimal or no wind in the Atlantic – especially on the hottest days. Ditto for the Gulf of Mexico. No wind means no electricity – right when you need it most.

Of course, too little wind isn’t the only issue. Other times, there’s too much wind – as when a hurricane roars up the coast. That’s more likely in the Gulf of Mexico. But the Great Atlantic Hurricane of 1944 had Category 4 winds in Virginia, Category 3 intensity off Cape Hatteras (NC), Long Island and Rhode Island, and Category 2 when it reached Maine. It sank four U.S. Navy and Coast Guard ships.

When storms or hurricanes hit, turbines can be destroyed. Repairing or replacing hundreds of offshore turbines could take years.

If the White House is planning to generate all that power using common 6-MW turbines, our coastlines would need a hefty 5,000 of the 600-foot tall monsters dotting them. The Washington Monument is 655 feet tall.

Going instead with 12-MW turbines, like the 850-foot-tall GE Haliade-X turbines Virginia is planning to install off its coast, America would still need 2,500 of the behemoths – just to complete Phase One of Biden’s plan. 30,000 megawatts by 2030.  Even if these were all plopped in the Atlantic, it still would not be enough to meet New York State’s current electricity needs.

And what about the environment?

How many millions of tons of steel, copper, lithium, cobalt, rare earth elements, concrete, petroleum-based composites (for turbine blades) and other raw materials would be required to manufacture and install the turbines and undersea electrical cables, especially where deep-water turbines are involved?

How many billions of tons of ore would have to be mined, crushed, processed and refined – considering that it takes 125,000 tons of average ore for every 1,000 tons of pure copper metal?

Not only would nearly all of this mining and manufacturing require fossil fuels, but much of it would be done in China, or in other countries by Chinese-owned companies. Haliade-X turbines are also manufactured in China. And much of the mining and processing is done under horrid workplace safety and environmental conditions, often with near-slave and child labor.

More turbines will also kill countless birds and bats. Turbine infrasound and other noise have been implicated in disorienting and stranding whales and dolphins. The numbers, height and low-frequency turbine noise also interferes with surface ships, submarines, aircraft and radar.

Nuclear power or billions of batteries (or retained fossil fuel power plants) will have to back up every megawatt of intermittent, unreliable wind power, so that society can function every time the wind fails. That means more raw materials, transmission lines and costs.

Even with massive taxpayer subsidies, electricity generated by offshore turbines will cost many times what we are paying today, even in New York and California. That will have especially heavy impacts on energy-intensive industries, hospitals, and poor, middle-class, minority and fixed-income families.

Economic, environmental and climate justice reviews must fully, carefully and honestly assess every one of these factors. No “expedited” or “climate emergency” shortcuts should be permitted.

President Biden likes to say offshore wind energy is clean, green, renewable and sustainable. Wind itself certainly is. But harnessing the wind (or sun), to meet the needs of modern civilization is not – especially in ocean environments.

Claiming otherwise is a mirage – a scam. Maybe that’s why the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management already canceled two wind projects off Long Island. The costs and impacts are enormous, and local opposition was high. Do climate activists in and out of the Biden Administration expect otherwise anywhere else?

Craig Rucker is president of the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (www.CFACT.org).

May 8, 2021 Posted by | Economics, Environmentalism, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Progressive Hypocrite | | Leave a comment

80 Groups Blast US Interference in Mexico’s Phaseout of Glyphosate and GM Corn

By Jessica Corbett | Common Dreams | April 29, 2021

A coalition of 80 U.S. agricultural, consumer, environmental, public health, and worker groups sent a letter Thursday to key figures in the Biden administration calling for them to “respect Mexico’s sovereignty and refrain from interfering with its right to enact health-protective policies” — specifically, the phaseout of the herbicide glyphosate and the cultivation of genetically modified corn.

“Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador quietly rocked the agribusiness world with his New Year’s Eve decree,” Timothy A. Wise of the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (ITAP) noted earlier this year. “His administration sent an even stronger aftershock two weeks later, clarifying that the government would also phase out GM corn imports in three years and the ban would include not just corn for human consumption but yellow corn destined primarily for livestock.”

“Mexico imports about 30% of its corn each year, overwhelmingly from the United States,” Wise added. “Almost all of that is yellow corn for animal feed and industrial uses. López Obrador’s commitment to reducing and, by 2024, eliminating such imports reflects his administration’s plan to ramp up Mexican production as part of the campaign to increase self-sufficiency in corn and other key food crops.”

The groups’ letter on the Mexican policies and U.S. interference—published in English (pdf) and Spanish (pdf)—is addressed to recently confirmed U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai. Its lead author is Kristin Schafer, executive director of Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA).

“We call on Secretary Vilsack and Trade Representative Tai, as key leaders in the new administration, to respect Mexico’s decision to protect both public health and the integrity of Mexican farming,” Schafer said in a statement. “It is completely unacceptable for U.S. public agencies to be doing the bidding of pesticide corporations like Bayer, who are solely concerned with maintaining their bottom-line profits.”

Fernando Bejarano, director of Pesticide Action Network in Mexico, explained that “we are part of the No Maize No Country Campaign, a broad coalition of peasant organizations, nonprofit NGOs, academics, and consumers which support the presidential decree and fight for food sovereignty with the agroecological transformation of agricultural systems that guarantee the right to produce and consume healthy, nutritious food, free of pesticides and transgenics.”

“We reject the pressure from corporations such as Bayer-Monsanto—and their CropLife trade association—which are working in both the United States and Mexico to undermine the presidential decree that phases out the use of glyphosate and transgenic corn,” Bejarano said.

The letter highlights Guardian reporting on U.S. government documents obtained by the Center for Biological Diversity through a Freedom of Information Act request. The documents revealed that CropLife America and Bayer AG—which acquired glyphosate-based herbicide developer Monsanto in 2018—worked with U.S. officials to lobby against Mexico’s plans.

According to journalist Carey Gillam’s mid-February report:

The emails reviewed by the Guardian come from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) and other U.S. agencies. They detail worry and frustration with Mexico’s position. One email makes a reference to staff within López Obrador’s administration as “vocal anti-biotechnology activists,” and another email states that Mexico’s health agency (Cofepris) is “becoming a big time problem.”

Internal USTR communications lay out how the agrochemical industry is “pushing” for the U.S. to “fold this issue” into the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) trade deal that went into effect July 1. The records then show the USTR does exactly that, telling Mexico its actions on glyphosate and genetically engineered crops raise concerns “regarding compliance” with USMCA.

Citing discussions with CropLife, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) joined in the effort, discussing in an inter-agency email “how we could use USMCA to work through these issues.”

Full article

May 2, 2021 Posted by | Economics, Environmentalism, Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

New ‘dangerous chemical’ leak detected at NUCLEAR WASTE site in Washington state

RT | April 30, 2021

A nuclear waste storage tank at a defunct plutonium reactor in Washington state has sprung a leak, the Department of Energy said, as local officials warn the aging vessel will emit 1,300 gallons of chemicals over the next year.

The leaking tank, located at the Hanford site in southeast Washington, just 8 miles west of the Columbia River, was announced on Thursday by the Energy Department. A breach in the 75-year-old storage reservoir was suspected more than a year ago but only confirmed recently, one of several decrepit tanks at the facility.

“It’s a serious matter whenever a Hanford tank leaks its radioactive and dangerous chemical waste,” the state’s ecology director, Laura Watson, said in a statement, adding that that officials do not believe the breach poses “increased risk to workers or the public,” though it does contribute to “the ongoing environmental threat at Hanford.”

“This leak is adding to the estimated one million gallons of tank waste already in the soil across the Hanford site. This highlights the critical need for resources to address Hanford’s aging tanks, which will continue to fail and leak over time.”

While the problematic tank, designated B-109, is only the second officially confirmed leak at Hanford, (the first was detected in 2013), many of the site’s 149 storage tanks are suspected to have issues, with the Washington Ecology Department estimating that more than 200,000 gallons of waste have escaped from the “B Farm” alone, where B-109 is located. Across the whole Hanford facility, they believe 1 million gallons have poured from compromised tanks.

With B-109 leaking an estimated 3.5 gallons each day, or 1,300 gallons per year, the concerns are compounded by the tank’s close proximity to the water table, sitting just over 200 feet above, as well as the Columbia River.

A formal leak assessment was launched last year after the tank’s levels were found to be dropping, and though a breach was discovered, local officials’ hands remain tied under an agreement governing clean-up operations at Hanford. Environmental agencies can only take “immediate action” in response to a leak if it is deemed “necessary to abate an imminent and substantial endangerment to public health or welfare or the environment.” For now, the state, as well as federal agencies, have assessed no immediate danger from B-109, despite the confirmed leak.

“Contamination in this area is not new and mitigation actions have been in place for decades to protect workers, the public and the environment,” Energy Department spokesman Geoff Tyree told the Associated Press, adding “There is no increased health or safety risk to the Hanford workforce or the public.”

Hanford has seen a years-long, multi-billion-dollar clean-up effort due to its ailing equipment, which itself has become controversial. In 2019, the federal government sued arms dealer Lockheed Martin, which was awarded a $3.2 billion contract in the clean-up project alongside another private company, alleging it defrauded American taxpayers with illegal kickback payments.

The site’s management has also come under fire in recent years, with workers accused of deliberately dumping toxic waste into the environment in 2017.

The Hanford facility has a rich history stretching back to the days of the Manhattan Project, becoming the site for the world’s first large-scale plutonium production reactor. Plutonium manufactured there was used in the first nuclear bomb test at the Trinity site, as well as in Fat Man, the bomb dropped on Nagasaki, Japan in the waning days of World War II.

The B-109 tank came online in 1946, running for 30 years before it was shut down, while the entire facility was shuttered in 1987, leaving behind 53 million gallons of waste. Since then, local authorities have worked to stabilize the remaining storage vessels, but problems keep piling up, as thousands of gallons of hazardous materials continue to flow into the soil unabated.

April 30, 2021 Posted by | Corruption, Environmentalism, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , | 2 Comments

US Honey Still Contains Radioactive Fallout From 1950s Nuclear Weapons Tests, Study Finds

By Morgan Artyukhina – Sputnik – 23.04.2021

While the damage done to honeybee hives by pesticides is well documented, the effects of radioactive fallout is less well understood. However, bees near Ukraine’s Chernobyl exclusion zone were observed to have lower reproduction after the 1986 reactor disaster scattered fallout across the region.

Early atmospheric tests of nuclear weapons scattered radioactive fallout far and wide, tainting land, waterways, and the foods they produced for decades. However, nearly three quarters of a century later, scientists are still finding new places where the evidence of those fiery explosions persists, with the latest being in honey.

“While most of the radiation produced by a nuclear weapon detonation decays within the first few days, one of the longest-lived and more abundant fission products is [cesium-137] , which has a radioactive half-life of 30.2 years,” a study recently published in Nature Communications notes.

To demonstrate this to his undergraduate students, James Kaste, a geologist at Virginia’s College of William & Mary, assigned them the task of gathering local produce from wherever they went on spring break and bringing it back to the lab to be tested for cesium, according to Science Magazine. Most of the results were as expected – very low – but one sample, some raw honey made in Raleigh, North Carolina, was found to have cesium levels 100 times higher than the other samples.

Kaste decided to chase the lead, joining with two others to collect 122 honey samples from up and down the US East Coast to test for the radioactive cesium isotope. In 68 of those samples, they found above 0.03 becquerels per kilogram of the material, with the highest being 19.1 becquerels from a Florida sample. None of those are remotely close to the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) safety cutoff of 1,200 becquerels per kilogram.

“I’m not worried at all,” Kaste told the outlet. “I eat more honey now than I did before I started the project. And I have kids, I feed them honey.”

The study notes that several decades ago, the quantity of cesium in the honey was likely much higher, but due to its radioactive instability, much of it has decayed, turning into different elements.

Between 1951 and 1963, the US performed 100 above-ground nuclear weapons tests at the Nevada Test Site, and another 928 underground tests before 1973, after which the US signed the Threshold Test Ban Treaty, sharply limiting the size of underground nuclear tests. The dust from these tests carried radioactive materials far and wide, sprinkling them across the United States, where they made their way into the ecosystem and often into people’s food.

Cesium-137 is just one of several radioactive isotopes uniquely created by nuclear bombs. According to the study, cesium mimics potassium, a common element used in biological processes, which is how it becomes a part of the plants from which the bees collect honey. However, others, such as strontium-90, mimic calcium, making products such as milk an easy pathway for human consumption, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. Another, iodine-131, is also passed through milk and readily causes thyroid cancer.

A 2017 study by the University of Arizona found that radioactive fallout from those tests was responsible for an extra 340,000 to 690,000 American deaths. A New York Times article from 1986, amid the Chernobyl disaster in the former Soviet Union, recalled that although the US Atomic Energy Commission tracked radiation fallout in food for decades and claimed the exposure was no worse than a person received standing in sunshine, “farm animals died from radiation exposure and human cancer rates [in Utah] near the test site increased tenfold. Plutonium was found in the soil in Salt Lake City, Denver and Houston. Stillbirth rates in New York showed increases in 1954, 1956 and 1959 – the years following intensive testing.”

“Federal officials have taken the stance that absolutely no increased cancer rates, no medical damage of any kind has occurred as a result of nuclear testing,” the Times continues.

However, those Native American communities directly downwind of the nuclear explosions experienced the most intense fallout, with the very first nuclear test, the July 1945 “Trinity” explosion, pouring a colossal amount of radioactive dust onto the “Tularosa downwinders” in New Mexico’s Jornada del Muerto. While some downwinders have received financial compensation from the US government, they have been left out of such legislation as of yet.

April 23, 2021 Posted by | Environmentalism, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

Disposing of Fukushima’s nuclear water is ‘not Japanese housework,’ countries have every right to claim compensation, China says

RT | April 23, 2021

The Chinese Foreign Ministry says neighboring countries will bear the brunt of the problems created by Japan’s decision to dump radioactive wastewater into the ocean, adding that Tokyo should be ready to compensate.

Speaking on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said that Tokyo can no longer pretend to be deaf and dumb over the issue of releasing its supposedly treated nuclear wastewater from the now-defunct Fukushima power plant into the ocean.

Citing an expert who claimed that Japan’s neighbors would be most impacted by their decision, Zhao stated, “as the neighboring countries that bear the brunt of the sewage from Japan’s nuclear accident, China, South Korea and other countries have every right to claim compensation from Japan.”

The spokesman continued, saying Japan must not put its own private interests above international and public interests. “The disposal of nuclear contaminated water in Fukushima, it is definitely not Japan’s housework. If the nuclear sewage is not polluted, why doesn’t Japan keep it for itself?”

Zhao added that Japan is making a dangerous first step, claiming its government will pay the price for its irresponsible behavior, leaving a stain on history.

Last week, Japan announced it would be releasing the wastewater from the meltdown at the Fukushima nuclear plant into the ocean “in around two years.” The plan, which had been widely rumored to be Tokyo’s preferred option, was met with condemnation by Japan’s neighbors.

Concerns have been raised about how safe the water is despite years of treatment. Last year, Greenpeace reported that the wastewater from the plant was more dangerous than the Japanese government had suggested. Their publication titled, ‘Stemming the tide 2020: The reality of the Fukushima radioactive water crisis’ claimed the supposedly treated water still contains “dangerous levels of carbon-14,” a radioactive substance that has the “potential to damage human DNA.” The water is also known to contain radioactive tritium.

April 23, 2021 Posted by | Environmentalism, Nuclear Power, Timeless or most popular | | 1 Comment

Norwegian City ‘Ill-Prepared’ to Welcome NATO Nuclear Submarines

By Igor Kuznetsov – Sputnik – 23.04.2021

Despite treating a nuclear accident as an unlikely scenario, the Norwegian Armed Forces warned that it may lead to death, damage overall health over time and do great radioactive harm to nature and the environment.

While the first NATO nuclear submarines are set to dock soon outside the Norwegian city of Tromsø due to a contested recent agreement, the municipality has no plans for the mass evacuation of people in the event of a radioactive leak or other emergency, national broadcaster NRK reported.

Among other things, there is a conspicuous lack of material and competence for rescue and health personnel who may have to assist in the event of an accident.

“As is said in the contingency plan, which will be ready 1 May, we lack the necessary training on everything in the plan, and we also lack the necessary equipment,” the director of Tromsø municipality, Stig Tore Johnsen, told NRK, admitting that the authorities don’t have what is needed if something goes wrong when the nuclear submarines arrive.

“We don’t plan for the entire city of Tromsø to be evacuated in the event of an incident. It is a not very relevant scenario, and not very likely to happen, so we cannot plan for it,” Johnsen said.

According to Johnsen, the municipality currently lacks information about when the first submarine will arrive. However, in two weeks, a digital public meeting under the auspices of the Armed Forces will be held about the planned calls.

While the contingency plan is almost finished, this doesn’t mean that everything is in place.

“The plan doesn’t necessarily mean that we have done all the exercises, acquired expertise in incidents that may occur or other material. There are things that will remain after 1 May,” Johnsen admitted.

Earlier this year, the Norwegian Armed Forces completed a classified 80-page risk and vulnerability analysis for the arrival of nuclear submarines. According to NRK, though, the Armed Forces treat a nuclear accident as an unlikely scenario. But it can happen, and in the event of an accident, the consequences can be death, damage to health over time and great radioactive harm to nature and the environment. The Armed Forces’ own analysis shows that may ultimately be relevant to evacuate large parts of Tromsø. In the words of the national broadcaster NRK, “If a nuclear accident occurs, it can have fatal consequences for Tromsø.”

Municipal council representative Jens Ingvald Olsen of the Reds party, previously a staunch opponent of port calls by nuclear-powered vessels in Norway, is highly critical of how the authorities handle this issue.

“It is quite obvious that the municipality, the University Hospital of Northern Norway, and the police are ill-prepared to handle submarine reception as of today. What is happening now confirms what we have been criticising over the past five years,” Olsen told national broadcaster NRK.

Deputy mayor of Tromsø, Mads Hegge Jakobsen of the Centre Party, said that the position in the municipal council has been taken and that is unlikely for it to turn around on this issue.

Previously, the upgrade of the port facilities in Tromsø triggered popular and political opposition, as well as criticism from environmentalists, including Greenpeace.

Tromsø, 76,000, is the largest urban area in Northern Norway and the third largest north of the Arctic Circle in the entire world, trailing only Russia’s Murmansk and Norilsk.

April 23, 2021 Posted by | Environmentalism, Militarism | , , | Leave a comment

Study Links Pesticides To Childhood Central Nervous System Tumors

Waking Times | April 9, 2021

A new study adds to the evidence that pesticides harm children’s health.

The study, published in Environmental Research last week, found that children were more likely to develop central nervous system (CNS) tumors if their mothers had lived within 2.5 miles of land where pesticides were being sprayed when they were born.

This study is the first, to our knowledge, to estimate effects for a large number of specific pesticides in relation to CNS tumor subtypes,” Julia Heck, a study coauthor and the associate dean for research at the University of North Texas College of Health and Public Service said, as NBC Los Angeles reported.

The research looked at the California Cancer Registry to identify cases of certain cancers in children under six years old, the study explained. They focused on mothers who lived in rural areas and gave birth between 1998 and 2011 to identify 667 cases of childhood central nervous system tumors and 123,158 controls.

They then compared these cases to data from the California Department of Pesticide Regulation’s (CDPR) Pesticide Use Reporting (PUR) system to identify whether chemicals classed as possible carcinogens by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had been sprayed within 2.5 miles of the mothers’ homes at birth.

One important implication of the study is that the mothers did not have to be directly working in agriculture in order for their children to face dangerous exposure.

California’s agricultural work force numbers more than 800,000, according to state estimates,” Dr. Christina Lombardi, study co-author and epidemiologist with the Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, told Beyond Pesticides.In addition to the negative health effects of pesticides on workers there are large numbers of pregnant women and young children living adjacent to treated fields who may experience detrimental health effects as well.

This risk is exacerbated by the fact that farmland and residential land is not always clearly delineated in the state.

This transition from farmland to residential neighborhoods is abrupt across California, and, of course, constantly changing as farmland is developed,” study co-author Myles Cockburn of the University of Southern California told Beyond Pesticides.

The researchers found that some of the chemicals they studied increased tumor risk as much as 2.5 times. Overall, exposure to the pesticides chlorthalonil, bromacil, thiophanate-methyl, triforine, kresoxim-methyl, propiconazole, dimethoate and linuron all increased tumor risk.

This is far from the first study to show that pesticide exposure is a danger to pregnant mothers and children. In fact, researchers have been studying the link between pesticides and childhood cancer since the 1970s, according to NBC Los Angeles.

The report authors called for government action to better protect mothers and children.

Policy interventions to reduce pesticide exposure in individuals residing near agricultural fields should be considered to protect the health of children,” coauthor and UCLA’s Fielding School of Public Health epidemiology professor Beate Ritz told NBC Los Angeles.

April 13, 2021 Posted by | Environmentalism | | Leave a comment

ABSOLUTE SLAVERY: Zero Carbon Agenda Deconstructed

Ice Age Farmer | April 6, 2021

What is a zero-carbon future? What does it look like? To imagine, turn off your heater. No airports. No shipping. No animals. Perfect surveillance state. In this Ice Age Farmer special report, Christian breaks The “Absolute Zero” plan and how governments are actively taking drastic steps every day to meet these dystopian goals for Travel, Transport, Energy, Manufacturing, Recycling, and Food. We must understand the reality underneath their flowery philanthropic language: Absolute Slavery.

Intro to Net Zero: (0:00)
Road Vehicles: (3:54)
Rail: (8:25)
Flight: (14:15)
Shipping: (17:56)
Heating & Appliances: (22:42)
Food & Waste: (26:34)
Materials, Construction, Recycling: (35:32)
Electricity & Fossil Fuels (43:22)
Water (45:00)
Perfect Surveillance/Enforcement (46:46)
Closing (49:58)

FULL SHOW NOTES: https://www.iceagefarmer.com/2021/04/06/absolute-slavery-zero-carbon-agenda-deconstructed/

Absolute Zero document: https://iceagefarmer.com/docs/AbsoluteZero.pdf

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The Victory Seed — easy pamphlet to share:
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IAF RESOURCES:
⇒ GDD: Growing Degree Days tool: how much colder has 2019 been for you?
http://iceagefarmer.com/gdd

⇒ IAF Wiki – read history, understand cycles, know what’s coming:
http://wiki.iceagefarmer.com/wiki/History
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http://wiki.iceagefarmer.com/wiki/Strategic_Relocation:_Maps

⇒ Crop Loss Map
http://map.iceagefarmer.com

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*** SUPPORTERS – I recommend (because I use personally) ***

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___

LINKS:

Absolute Zero document: https://iceagefarmer.com/docs/AbsoluteZero.pdf

INTRO:
https://unfccc.int/climate-action/race-to-zero-campaign#eq-3
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/mar/15/race-to-zero-america-emissions-climate-crisis

CARS:

https://statecolumn.com/oregon-legislature-seeks-to-ban-diesel-fuel-sales-by-end-of-decade/
https://www.fool.com/investing/2020/10/22/us-senate-and-house-get-a-bill-to-ban-sales-of-gas/
https://abcnews.go.com/Business/uk-ban-selling-gas-diesel-cars-2030/story?id=74274466
https://www.roadandtrack.com/new-cars/future-cars/news/a31097/german-government-votes-to-ban-internal-combustion-engines-by-2030/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phase-out_of_fossil_fuel_vehicles#Countries
https://qz.com/1962786/bidens-electric-vehicle-buying-spree-could-boost-us-ev-sales/
https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/countries-that-will-ban-gasoline-cars.html

Nissan And Mitsubishi Could Launch Electric Minicar Next Year


https://www.foxbusiness.com/economy/buttigieg-vehicle-miles-tax-infrastructure
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2021/02/how-electric-fleets-can-fuel-decarbonisation-efforts-zeuf/
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/03/electric-cars-are-still-coal-powered/

RAIL:
https://www.wired.com/story/biden-wants-out-car-on-train/

US election: could Joe Biden spark a Second Great Railroad Revolution?


https://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/news/2021/04/01/amtrak-infrastructure-bill-propsal
https://s7d2.scene7.com/is/image/TWCNews/Amtrakmap

https://www.theurbanist.org/2020/06/16/should-the-government-invest-in-high-speed-rail-to-boost-a-post-pandemic-economic-recovery/

Revisiting Berkshire Hathaway’s Acquisition of BNSF

Bill Gates Owns Canadian National Railway


https://www.marketwatch.com/story/canadian-pacific-to-acquire-kansas-city-southern-in-25-billion-freight-rail-deal-11616335014?&mod=retirement-weekly

Carlos Slim consortium wins 18-billion-peso Maya Train contract


Click to access Amtrak-Corporate-Profile-FY2019-033120.pdf

FLYING:
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2021/feb/3/john-kerry-flew-private-jet-accept-climate-award-o/
https://www.travelweekly.com/Travel-News/Airline-News/US-airlines-to-go-net-zero-carbon-emissions-2050
https://www.travelweekly.com/Travel-News/Airline-News/Sustainable-fuel-taking-off
https://www.weforum.org/videos/airbus-says-it-could-be-flying-zero-emissions-planes-by-2035-race-to-zero
https://www.airbus.com/newsroom/stories/Is-this-the-next-clean-energy-to-power-aviation.html

Social License to Operate:
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/08/carbon-neutral-flying/

SHIPPING:
https://www.govtech.com/em/emergency-blogs/disaster-zone/ship-stuck-in-suez-canal-exposes-supply-chain-vulnerability.html
https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/time-for-a-logistics-rethink-after-suez-canal-grounding-academic/PNFF56L2TZPOPCMIXFQOWVYEDU/
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/01/decarbonizing-shipping-global-energy-transition/
https://www.globalmaritimeforum.org/getting-to-zero-coalition
https://www.globalmaritimeforum.org/getting-to-zero-coalition/members

Home

Signatories


https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ecb-climate-lagarde-idUSKBN29U0TA
https://blogs.adb.org/blog/smart-ports-are-needed-shipping-recover-pandemic

Click to access deloitte-nl-er-port-services-smart-ports.pdf


https://www.supplychaindive.com/news/maersk-ports-america-invest-19m-loadsmart-smart-drayage/562386/
https://port-xchange.com/about-portxchange/#
https://www.smartports.tv/
https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/los-angeles-port-head-demands-importers-retrieve-cargo-quicker-ease-congestion-crisis

HEATING & APPLIANCES
https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/Berkeley-becomes-first-U-S-city-to-ban-natural-14102242.php
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/article/gas-heat-and-stoves-are-warming-the-climate-should-cities-start-banning-them
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/05/clean-energy-natural-gas-coal-rocky-mountain-institute/
https://www.ecowatch.com/wood-burning-stove-pollution-2631428663.html#toggle-gdpr
https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-51581817

FOOD
(See the entire Ice Age Farmer channel! 🙂 )
https://www.forbes.com/sites/nicolerasul/2019/01/17/the-planetary-health-diet-will-it-save-lives-and-planet-earth/?sh=7710019bcb8b
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/jan/08/lets-get-rid-of-friggin-cows-why-one-food-ceo-says-its-game-over-for-meat-aoe
https://www.forbes.com/sites/stephenmcbride1/2021/03/22/bill-gates-wants-rich-countries-to-move-to-100-synthetic-beef-but-heres-the-opportunity-behind-this-trend/?sh=4b2a57bd6899
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/1556b3b4-8f50-11eb-af74-aabf762d9542
https://www.agdaily.com/livestock/senate-farm-systems-reform-act-aims-to-eliminate-cafos-in-20-years/
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-03-01/australian-steaks-may-vanish-from-world-menu-as-herd-shrinks

Greenpeace calls for ban on chemical nitrogen fertiliser

Proposed FDA rule threatens small farms & food businesses


https://www.scmp.com/abacus/tech/article/3029514/why-china-using-facial-recognition-garbage-bins

MATERIALS
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circular_economy
https://www.weforum.org/press/2021/01/mission-possible-climate-action-partnership-launched-to-help-transform-heavy-industry-and-transport
https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/24/business/heliogen-solar-bill-gates-rio-tinto/index.html
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/01/world-without-waste-recycle-plastic
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/does-bill-gates-trust-see-200256158.html
https://www.dallasnews.com/news/2016/01/04/new-recycling-facility-on-the-way-at-mccommas-landfill-in-southern-dallas/

Fort Worth, Partners Launch Digital Recycling Tool in Honor of Global Recycling Day

PLASTIC
https://www.presstelegram.com/2021/04/02/the-push-to-reduce-plastic-waste-gains-traction-in-sacramento-and-d-c/
https://www.denverpost.com/2021/04/03/colorado-plastic-bags-containers-legislature-lobbyists/
https://news.yahoo.com/oahu-restaurants-maneuver-ban-plastic-160600905.html
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2021/03/three-experts-on-why-eradicating-plastic-pollution-will-help-achieve-gender-equality/
https://www.plasticstoday.com/sustainable-practices/carbon-neutrality-next-big-sustainable-packaging-thing

ELECTRICITY & FOSSIL FUELS
https://sacramento.cbslocal.com/2020/01/08/california-considers-statewide-ban-on-gas-powered-garden-tools/
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/france-ban-emmanuel-macron-oil-gas-exploration-2040-latest-global-warming-climate-change-a8121031.html

WATER
https://www.weforum.org/projects/global-water-initiative

Feds suspend, Calif. cuts water allocation for Valley farmers

PERFECT SURVEILLANCE & ENFORCEMENT
https://www.weforum.org/press/2020/11/in-the-face-of-extraordinary-challenges-36-pioneer-cities-chart-a-course-towards-a-more-ethical-and-responsible-future
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/06/covid-19-pandemic-teaches-us-about-cybersecurity-cyberattack-cyber-pandemic-risk-virus/
https://time.com/collection/best-inventions-2020/5911362/climate-trace/
https://www.npr.org/2018/05/08/609493403/these-smart-sewers-are-part-of-a-growing-trend-connecting-infrastructure-to-the-

April 11, 2021 Posted by | Economics, Environmentalism, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Timeless or most popular, Video | | Leave a comment

[“Sustainable”] Uranium Prices Poised To Rally

Oilprice.com | April 3, 2021

The uranium market is emerging from years in the doldrums as the overhang from the nuclear disaster in Japan is cleared and global demand picks up steam.

The spot price for U3O8 moved above $30 per pound for the first time this year as uranium producers and mine developers hoover up above-ground inventories and reactor construction continues apace.

Two new research notes from BMO Capital Markets and Morgan Stanley say today’s price marks a floor and predict a rally in prices over the next few years to the ~$50 level by 2024.

The stars seem to be aligning for a new phase of nuclear energy investment with the US, China and Europe bolstering the bull case for the fuel this month.

Although nuclear energy was not mentioned explicitly in the $2 trillion Biden infrastructure proposal released today, its federally mandated “energy efficiency and clean electricity standard” is hardly achievable without it.

Source: Cameco

Over the weekend leaked documents showed a panel of experts advising the EU is set to designate nuclear as a sustainable source of electricity which opens the door for new investment under the continent’s ambitious green energy program.

China’s 14th five-year plan released a fortnight ago also buoyed the uranium market with Beijing planning to up the country’s nuclear energy capacity by 46% – from 48GW in 2020 to 70GW by 2025.

There are several factors working in uranium’s favour, not least the fact that annual uranium demand is now above the level that existed before the 2011 Fukushima disaster when Japan shut off all its reactors:

  • Uranium miners, developers and investment funds like Yellow Cake (13m lbs inventory build up so far) are buying material on the spot market bringing to more normal levels government and utility inventories built up over the last decade
  • Major mines are idled including Cameco’s Cigar Lake (due to covid-19) which accounts for 18m lbs or 13% of annual mine supply. The world’s largest uranium operation McArthur River was suspended in July 2018 taking 25m lbs off the market
  • Permanent closures so far this year include Rio Tinto’s Ranger operation in Australia (3m lbs) and Niger’s Cominak mine (2.6m lbs) which had been in operation since 1978. Rio is exiting the market entirely following the sale of Rössing Uranium in Namibia
  • Like Cameco, top producer Kazatomprom, which mined 15% less material last year due to covid restrictions has committed to below capacity production (–20% for the state-owned Kazakh miner) for the foreseeable future
  • Price reporting agency and research company UxC estimates that utilities’ uncovered requirements would balloon to some 500m lbs by 2026 and 1.4 billion lbs by 2035
  • Roughly 390m lbs are already locked up in the long term market while 815m lbs have been consumed in reactors over the last five years, according to UxC
  • There are 444 nuclear reactors in operation worldwide and another 50 under construction – 2 new connections to the grid and one construction start so far in  2021
  • Much cheaper and safer, small modular nuclear power reactors which can readily slot into brownfield sites like decommissioned coal-fired plants (or even underground or underwater) are expected to become a significant source of additional demand.

There are caveats to this rosy scenario, however.

Morgan Stanley warns that “the opacity of the inventory situation remains a key uncertainty to price – see for example palladium, which needed almost 7 years of deficit before the price really took off.”

BMO says given the still high levels of inventories “acute shortages and price squeezes are extremely unlikely, both for this year and the foreseeable future,” adding that “there is no obvious need for new mine supply in the near future.”

April 4, 2021 Posted by | Environmentalism, Nuclear Power, Progressive Hypocrite | , | 4 Comments

Joe Biden Pledges to Make Solar Panels More Environmentally Toxic

By Eric Worrall | Watts Up With That? | March 25, 2021

If you thought Arsenic doped Silicon or Gallium Arsenide on your roof was bad, how about solar cells made of organic Lead compounds, or Cadmium Telluride? Biden’s quest for cheaper solar is exploring some truly terrifying photovoltaic innovations.

U.S. pledges to slash solar energy costs by 60% in a decade

March 25 (Reuters) – The Biden administration on Thursday set a goal to cut the cost of solar energy by 60% over the next decade as part of an ambitious plan to decarbonize the United States’ power sector by 2035.

The U.S. Department of Energy said the goal accelerates its previous utility-scale solar cost target by five years. For the U.S. power grid to run entirely on clean energy within 15 years, a key pillar of President Joe Biden’s climate change agenda, solar energy will need to be installed as much as five times faster than it is today, DOE said.

To get there, the agency committed to spending $128 million on technologies including perovskite solar cells, which are regarded as a promising cheap alternative to the silicon cells that dominate the market. Funds will also support research on cadmium telluride and concentrating solar technologies. … Read more

Rechargeable batteries used to contain Cadmium, it was discontinued because Cadmium is horribly toxic. less than half a gram of Cadmium in your system will really mess up your day. Symptoms include cancer, “Cadmium Blues” (persistent flu like symptoms), renal failure, softening of the bones, emphysema and respiratory damage. Can you imagine having several pounds of Cadmium on your roof? What if your neighbour’s solar powered rooftop catches fire?

Tellurium is unpleasant, though it does not seem as toxic as Cadmium. At least people seem to recover from Tellurium poisoning. Clinical features of acute tellurium toxicity include a metallic taste, nausea, vomiting, blackened oral mucosa and skin, and corrosive gastrointestinal tract injury from acidic solvents. … Our patients exhibited many of the characteristic features of tellurium toxicity, namely, vomiting, garlic odor of the breath, blackened oral mucosa, and benign clinical course. – source https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/116/2/e319

Cadmium Telluride solar cells – double the fun, if a house fire spreads the panel material around your neighbourhood. I’m not eating pie made from that Apple tree.

The Perovskite solar cells are if anything are potentially even worse. From Wikipedia :- perovskite solar cell (PSC) is a type of solar cell which includes a perovskite-structured compound, most commonly a hybrid organic-inorganic lead or tin halide-based material, as the light-harvesting active layer. Perovskite materials, such as methylammonium lead halides and all-inorganic caesium lead halide, are cheap to produce and simple to manufacture.

Organic lead is probably the worst form of lead exposure, because it is fat soluble. Organic lead is neatly packaged for optimum absorption into your body and brain tissue. You don’t even have to ingest or breath it in – organic lead can pass right through your skin, all it has to do is touch you.

From Wikipedia;

… Lead poisoning can cause a variety of symptoms and signs which vary depending on the individual and the duration of lead exposure. Symptoms are nonspecific and may be subtle, and someone with elevated lead levels may have no symptoms. Symptoms usually develop over weeks to months as lead builds up in the body during a chronic exposure, but acute symptoms from brief, intense exposures also occur. Symptoms from exposure to organic lead, which is probably more toxic than inorganic lead due to its lipid solubility, occur rapidly. Poisoning by organic lead compounds has symptoms predominantly in the central nervous system, such as insomniadeliriumcognitive deficitstremor, hallucinations, and convulsions.

Symptoms may be different in adults and children; the main symptoms in adults are headache, abdominal painmemory losskidney failure, male reproductive problems, and weakness, pain, or tingling in the extremities …

There is a reason governments are moving away from allowing the addition of small amounts of organic lead to gasoline.

The tin based Perovskite is probably the least offensive of the chemicals listed. Metallic tin is commonly used as a plating on food tins, though you can still suffer acute toxicity from ingestion of soluble tin salts, say if there was a problem with processing the food. But even if they go for the tin based Perovskite, after they finish tinkering with the formula, who knows what the final recipe will contain.

March 26, 2021 Posted by | Environmentalism | , | Leave a comment

UN Food Summit Boycotted Over Gates Influence

By Dr. Joseph Mercola | March 19, 2021

Hundreds of farmers and human rights groups are boycotting the 2021 United Nations Food Systems Summit because they believe it favors agribusiness interests, elite foundations and the exploitation of African food systems.

The Summit claims it is convening to “launch bold new actions to transform the way the world produces and consumes food,”2 but critics say it is biased toward industrial, corporate farming while leaving out those in regenerative agriculture and the knowledge of indigenous people.3

The controversy began right from the start, when U.N. secretary general António Guterres appointed Agnes Kalibata as the event’s head. Kalibata is the former Rwandan agriculture minister who is now the president of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), an organization funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.4

AGRA is essentially a Gates Foundation subsidiary, and while some of its projects appear to be beneficial, most of its goals are centered on promoting biotechnology and chemical fertilizers.

Corporate Interests Dominating Food Summit

After Kalibata was appointed special envoy to the 2021 United Nations Food Systems Summit in December 2019, 176 civil society organizations and farmer groups from 83 countries urged Guterres to withdraw the appointment due to Kalibata’s clear conflicts of interest with corporate interests.

A second statement, signed by more than 500 academics and organizations, also opposed Kalibata’s appointment to, and her organization of, the Summit.5 AGRA is known to promote the interests of agribusiness, leading civil society organizations to argue that Kalibata’s appointment was a clear conflict of interest.

“This concern over Kalibata’s nomination has been largely borne-out by Kalibata’s top-down approach to organizing the Summit and her exclusion of those most affected by food insecurity and malnutrition in the planning process,” according to an August 2020 report by AGRA Watch.6

A dozen individuals representing development banks, academic institutions and the private sector came forward in support of Kalibata, but “11 had past or current connections to the Gates Foundation,” AGRA Watch reported, adding:7

“These findings illustrate the influence of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) on global food and agricultural policy. AGRA Watch has continually documented the role of the BMGF in influencing agricultural development, which has grown immensely in recent years.

That Gates Foundation seeks to exercise influence not only through its funding of projects and shaping of expertise, but also in funding the governance platforms that determine food and agricultural policy. This role of the BMGF in driving policy decisions based on its proprietary and technological model of agricultural development is often overlooked.”

Precision Agriculture, Genetic Engineering Take Center Stage

Concerns that the Summit was dominated by corporate industry heightened when its concept paper included precision agriculture, data collection and genetic engineering as pillars for addressing food security while leaving out regenerative agriculture.

As reported by The Guardian, Michael Fakhri, the U.N. special rapporteur on the right to food, wrote to Kalibata stating that the Summit was focused on “science and technology, money and markets” while leaving fundamental questions about inequality, accountability and governance unaddressed:8

“It [appears] heavily skewed in favor of one type of approach to food systems, namely market-based solutions … it leaves out experimental/traditional knowledge that has the acute effect of excluding indigenous peoples and their knowledge. The business sector has been part of the problem of food systems and has not been held accountable.”

The 300 million-member Civil Society and Indigenous Peoples’ Mechanism announced plans to boycott the Summit and set up a meeting of their own, while others, including Sofía Monsalve Suárez, head of nutrition rights group Fian International, questioned the Summit’s legitimacy:9

“We cannot jump on a train that is heading in the wrong direction … We sent a letter last year to the secretary general about our concerns. It was not answered. We sent another last month, which has also not been answered. The summit appears extremely biased in favor of the same actors who have been responsible for the food crisis.”

Other nutrition experts also expressed the need for the Summit to be more inclusive of initiatives such as agro-ecology and food sovereignty.

Food Group Calls On UN To Sever Ties With WEF

A group of 148 organizations from 28 countries also called on the U.N. to revoke their 2019 strategic partnership formed with the World Economic Forum (WEF). WEF’s involvement with the Summit has been called a form of “corporate hijacking” that would infringe on people’s rights to food and food production. According to the People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty:10

“The WEF will exploit the Summit to streamline neoliberal globalization, which it has espoused for the past 50 years. It is the perfect venue to push for the role of ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies’ to transform food systems, which the WEF has been championing since 2017.

A corporate-led FSS [Food Systems Summit] would be a great advantage to the political elites and corporate billionaires, enabling them to pose hypocritically as responsible entities that promote healthier diets and climate action.

… The sidelined and marginalized sectors in society — the poor farmers, workers, Indigenous Peoples, herders, pastoralists, fisherfolks, urban poor, women, Dalits, and youth — should replace these corporate moguls in shaping the Summit’s proceedings and reforms.”

Beyond the Summit, WEF’s takeover of the U.N. has been denounced by more than 400 civil society organizations and 40 international networks, which claim it will only accelerate the move toward a privatized, undemocratic global takeover. Monsalve Suárez stated:11

“Corporations in the global industrial food chain alone destroy 75 billion tons of topsoil annually and are responsible for the annual loss of 7.5 million hectares of forest. This destruction, along with other factors, leaves 3.9 billion underfed or malnourished people. The WEF represents the interests of those who destroy the environment and abuse our human rights. It cannot be considered a strategic partner in solving the world’s crises.”

Africa’s Traditional Food Systems Under Attack

Planning documents for the Summit also reveal plans for a “radical transformation shift” in Africa, away from traditional farming practices and toward industrial farming — even describing the potential as the “new oil.”12 The African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB), which released the documents, said the plans recycle the “same false solutions … with the same narrow benefits accruing to a limited number of actors.”13

For instance, one section of the documents is titled “the promise of digital and biotechnologies and the transformation of food systems,” and describes “the significant potential for capturing large economic, social and environmental payoffs from the use of biotechnology products … In West Africa, for instance, farmers can benefit significantly from the adoption of Bt cotton.”14

Technology and development take center stage, along with “strengthening the use of big data” for decisions on things like fertilizer use, genetically engineered crops and “accessing markets.” As noted by U.S. Right to Know:15

“This agenda aligns perfectly with the plans of the agrichemical industry, the Gates Foundation and its main agricultural development program, the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, which encourages African countries to pass business-friendly policies and scale up markets for patented seeds, fossil-fuel based fertilizers and other industrial inputs they say are necessary to boost food production.”

“The main problem with AGRA,” Global Justice Now explains, “is that it is laying the groundwork for the deeper penetration of African agriculture by agribusiness corporations,” and:

“The BMGF, through AGRA, is one of the world’s largest promoters of chemical fertiliser. Some grants given by the BMGF to AGRA have been specifically intended to ‘help AGRA build the fertiliser supply chain’ in Africa. One of the largest of AGRA’s own grants, worth $25 million, was to help establish the African Fertiliser Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP) in 2012 whose very goal is to ‘at least double total fertiliser use’ in Africa.”16

Bill Gates Is The Biggest Owner Of US Farmland

The BMGF’s involvement in the Summit is also self-serving, as Bill Gates owns more farmland in the U.S. than any other private farmer, having purchased a total of 242,000 acres — much of it considered some of the richest soil in the U.S. — at a frenzied pace over the past few years.17

Gates, however, isn’t interested in regenerative agriculture but instead is furthering an agricultural agenda that supports agrochemicals, patented seeds, fake meat and corporate control — interests that undermine regenerative, sustainable, small-scale farming. One of the key players in this agenda is the widespread adoption of synthetic meat.

Gates has made it clear that he believes switching to synthetic beef is the solution to reducing methane emissions that come from animals raised on concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).18

The strong recommendation to replace beef with fake meat is made in Gates’ book “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster: The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need,” which was released in February 2021.19 In an interview with MIT Technology Review, he goes so far as to say that people’s behaviors should be changed to learn to like fake meat and, if that doesn’t work, regulations could do the trick.20

What many aren’t aware of, however, is that Gates is either personally invested in, or invested in via Breakthrough Energy Ventures, fake meat companies like Beyond MeatsImpossible Foods, Memphis Meats and other companies he actively promotes.21

When asked whether he thinks plant-based and lab-grown meats could “be the full solution to the protein problem globally,” he says that, in middle- to above-income countries, yes, and that people can “get used to it.”22

Small Farmers, Regenerative Agriculture Are The Answer

The U.N. Food Summit is poised to bow down to corporate ideology instead of embracing the small farmers and regenerative practices that have true potential to feed the world and heal the planet. If you’re new to this discussion, you can find the top six reasons to support regenerative agriculture here. As Timothy Wise, senior adviser at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, told The Guardian :23

“A growing number of farmers, scientists and development experts now advocate a shift from high-input chemical-intensive agriculture to low-input ecological farming. They are supported by an array of new research documenting both the risks of continuing to follow our current practices and the potential benefits of a transition to more sustainable farming.”

Sources and References

March 21, 2021 Posted by | Book Review, Economics, Environmentalism | , , | 2 Comments