Knowledge for Responsible Earthians

Green Mission News – August 2016

SHANXI, CHINA -NOVEMBER 26: (CHINA, HONG KONG, MACAU, TAIWAN OUT) Smoke billows from stacks as a Chinese woman wears as mask while walking in a neighborhood next to a coal fired power plant on November 26, 2015 in Shanxi, China. A history of heavy dependence on burning coal for energy has made China the source of nearly a third of the world's total carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, the toxic pollutants widely cited by scientists and environmentalists as the primary cause of global warming. China's government has publicly set 2030 as a deadline to reach the country's emissions peak, and data suggest the country's coal consumption is already in decline. The governments of more than 190 countries are expected to sign an agreement in Paris to set targets on reducing carbon emissions in an attempt to forge a new global agreement on climate change. (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

SHANXI, CHINA -NOVEMBER 26: (CHINA, HONG KONG, MACAU, TAIWAN OUT) Smoke billows from stacks as a Chinese woman wears as mask while walking in a neighborhood next to a coal fired power plant on November 26, 2015 in Shanxi, China. A history of heavy dependence on burning coal for energy has made China the source of nearly a third of the world’s total carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, the toxic pollutants widely cited by scientists and environmentalists as the primary cause of global warming. China’s government has publicly set 2030 as a deadline to reach the country’s emissions peak, and data suggest the country’s coal consumption is already in decline. The governments of more than 190 countries are expected to sign an agreement in Paris to set targets on reducing carbon emissions in an attempt to forge a new global agreement on climate change. (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

Our Consumption Of Earth’s Natural Resources Has More Than Tripled In 40 Years

Limestone and steel for our homes, wheat and vegetables for our dinner, fossil fuels for our industries: we rely heavily on our planet’s natural resources to survive.

Yet we’re using up these resources at such an unsustainable pace that we may be “irreversibly” depleting some of them ― and critically damaging our Earth in the process, according to a new United Nations report.

The report from the International Resource Panel, part of the UN Environment Program, said extraction of primary materials has more than tripled in 40 years. Rising consumption driven by a rapidly growing middle class is fueling the rate.

In 1970, about 22 billion tons of primary materials were extracted from the Earth. These included metals, fossil fuels like coal, and other natural resources, such as timber and cereals. In 2010, that number had ballooned to 70 billion tons.

LEARN MORE

 


Earth Overshoot Day: On August 8, 2016, we will have used as much from nature as our planet can renew in the whole year.

http://www.overshootday.org


Coral reef degradation is not correlated with local human population density

http://www.nature.com/articles/srep29778

and

http://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2016/07/20/study-climate-change-causing-widespread-global-coral-reef-degradation


Buying directly from a farmer has an outsized impact on the local economy, UC Davis study finds

http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/article90906932.html


Musk ‘master plan’ expands Tesla into trucks, buses and car sharing

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKCN1002Q4

Tesla Motors Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk Wednesday unveiled an ambitious plan to expand the company into electric trucks and buses, car sharing and solar energy systems.


June Record Temps

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/june-2016-hottest-month_us_578f07f9e4b0f180da639fdf?section=


For 90 years, lightbulbs were designed to burn out. Now that’s coming to LED bulbs.

http://boingboing.net/2016/07/15/for-90-years-lightbulbs-were.html


This Lawsuit Has Put Big Ag On The Defensive In A Major Way

A pending Iowa case could set a new national precedent for water pollution stemming from farms.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/des-moines-water-iowa-farm-lawsuit_us_579a4957e4b0d3568f867e28?section=


Biodiversity, GMOs, Gene Drives and the Militarized Mind

http://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/07/10/biodiversity-gmos-gene-drives-and-militarized-mind


A Boon for Soil, and for the Environment

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/18/business/energy-environment/a-boon-for-soil-and-for-the-environment.html?smid=nytcore-ipad-share&smprod=nytcore-ipad&_r=0

“Everyone talks about sustainable,” Mr. Brown said. “Why do we want to sustain a degraded resource? We need to be regenerative, we need to take that carbon out of the atmosphere and put it back into the cycle, where it belongs.”


“What will it take for Fox News to admit that humans are changing the climate?” (video satire)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIOuOAetZq4&feature=youtu.be


North American forests unlikely to save us from climate change, study finds

http://m.phys.org/news/2016-07-north-american-forests-climate.html


What a decline of biodiversity below ‘safe’ threshold means for Earth

Earth’s ecosystems are becoming more fragile, a study suggests, as biodiversity loss threatens their ability to preform functions vital to their survival and ours.

http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2016/0714/What-a-decline-of-biodiversity-below-safe-threshold-means-for-Earth


Pacific islands nations consider world’s first treaty to ban fossil fuels

Treaty under consideration by 14 countries would ban new coalmines and embraces 1.5C target set at Paris climate talks

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jul/14/pacific-islands-nations-consider-worlds-first-treaty-to-ban-fossil-fuels


Oakland council bans coal

http://www.mercurynews.com/bay-area-news/ci_30064001/happening-now-oakland-council-considering-ban-coal


From Uniformity to Diversity: A paradigm shift from industrial agriculture to diversified agroecological systems

http://www.ipes-food.org/images/Reports/UniformityToDiversity_FullReport.pdf


How the World’s Most Fertile Soil Can Help Mitigate Climate Change

http://www.ecowatch.com/how-the-worlds-most-fertile-soil-can-help-reverse-climate-change-1906689975.html


Insecticide Can Cut Bee Sperm by Nearly 40 Percent, Study Finds

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/29/science/neonicotinoid-insecticide-bee-sperm.html


Victoria becomes first Australia government to tap green bond market

http://reneweconomy.com.au/2016/victoria-becomes-first-australia-government-tap-green-bond-market-98384


“Carbon farming” good for the climate, farmers, and biodiversity

A conversation with the author of a new book about regenerative agricultural practices that mitigate climate change and boost biodiversity, water quality, food security, and more.

https://news.mongabay.com/2016/07/carbon-farming-can-fight-climate-change-boost-diversity-and-feed-people-author-interview/


Could climate risk cause the next financial crisis?

http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/analysis/2465484/could-climate-risk-cause-the-next-financial-crisis\\


Ford Using Tequila Producer Jose Cuervo’s  Agave Plants to Meet Sustainability Goals

http://www.hybridcars.com/ford-using-tequila-producer-jose-cuervos-agave-plants-to-meet-sustainability-goals/


Walmart to Battle Food Waste By Selling ‘Ugly’ Apples

http://www.organicauthority.com/walmart-to-battle-food-waste-ugly-apples


3 considerations when solving the “stuff conundrum”

http://www.eco-business.com/opinion/3-considerations-when-solving-the-stuff-conundrum/


Nestlé CEO Urges Global Business To Ramp Up Efforts In The Fight Against Food Waste

http://www.foodingredientsfirst.com/News/Nestlé-CEO-Urges-Global-Business-To-Ramp-Up-Efforts-In-The-Fight-Against-Food-Waste.html?section=Food%20Ingredients%20News&tracking=All%20News&article_type=article


Martha’s Vineyard program aims to slim Island food waste

An innovative program is examining alternatives to shipping restaurant food waste off-Island.

http://www.mvtimes.com/2016/07/20/marthas-vineyard-program-aims-slim-island-food-waste/

 


Climate change, cannabis and Trudeau

If the commitment to combat climate change is credible and sincere it should also impact the government’s regulations with regards to cannabis cultivation

https://news.lift.co/climate-change-cannabis-trudeau/


Canadian business needs to catch up to ‘circular’ thinking

https://www.biv.com/article/2016/7/canadian-business-needs-catch-up-to-circu-thinking/


Is Permaculture Finally Becoming Permanent?

http://staugnews.com/is-permaculture-finally-becoming-permanent/


{ED.: in the book 1984, Orwell uses euphemism for politicians’ office titles, which meant the opposite of what the meaning is in plain speech: this controversy over this bill is about a NON-labeling law that just “passed” — GMO Disclosures and Claims: A Possible End to the U.S. GMO Labeling; The Ministries of Truth speak with forked-tongue.  There is, and will be, the Non-GMO Project Verified, so that is what labeling we have, for now.  There could be no more non-democratic action than limiting the transparency of what humans and animals choose to eat.   This so-call ‘law’ is unconstitutional, as it limits access to better information.  It’s about dissing free speech.  These politicians do not represent the better educated public — all they have represented is the better-stock-holders-on-patents-on-life  — the modern science educated ones who understand ‘engineering’ DNA and RNA is far from an exact science — know the label needs to mention the GMO as an ingredient.  In fact, all we have is genetic roulette!  An extremely risky business that uses massive amounts of herbicides and pesticides.   These are not the only externalities that the GMO-patent-owners need to be responsible and accountable to the public for — THAT list includes water pollution, genetic pollution, and persistent toxins in the biosphere.  carcinogens.  marketed to humans and animals.  }

{Ed.: Controversy?  Is this about STUPID is in charge?}

GMO Disclosures and Claims: A Possible End to the U.S. GMO Labeling Controversy?

http://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/gmo-disclosures-and-claims-a-possible-60449/


Applegate Plans to Remove GMOs from Entire Supply Chain

http://www.wholefoodsmagazine.com/news/breaking-news/applegate-removes-gmos/


Lies About The GMO ‘Labeling’ Bill

How can S 764 be called a GMO “labeling” bill if it does not label the majority of GMOs?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/zen-l-honeycutt/lies-about-the-gmo-labeli_b_11109200.html


5 Ways to Help You Know if There Are GMOs in Food

A new law may require labeling only for some products

http://www.consumerreports.org/food-safety/5-ways-help-you-know-if-there-are-gmos-in-food/


U.S. oil companies should join Exxon Mobil in push for carbon tax

http://www.houstonchronicle.com/business/columnists/tomlinson/article/American-oil-companies-should-join-Exxon-in-push-8341657.php


2016: The Year We Realized It’s 1984

http://journal-neo.org/2016/02/12/2016-the-year-we-realized-it-s-1984/


Avoid ‘miracle’ rice, just eat a carrot!

Jul 15, 2016 

Vandana Shiva

Golden rice is a false miracle. It is a disease of nutritionally empty monocultures offered as a cure for nutritional deficiency. In fact, golden rice, if successful, will be 400% less efficient in providing Vitamin A…

Norman Borlaug, father of the Green Revolution, died on September 9, 2009. Alfred G. Gilman died on December 23, 2015. Both were Nobel laureates and now both dead. Gilman was a signatory to a recent letter condemning Greenpeace and its opposition to genetic engineering.

How many Nobel laureates does it take to write a letter? Easily ascertained — the dead Gilman and 106 others were enlisted in “supporting GMOs and golden rice”. Correct answer — 107, dead or alive.

The laureates were rounded up by Val Giddings (senior fellow, Information Technology and Innovation Foundation), Jon Entine (author of Abraham’s Children: Race, Identity and the DNA of the Chosen People) and Jay Byrne (former head of corporate communications, Monsanto). Real people don’t have the luxury of getting Nobel laureates to write 1/107th of a letter, “chosen” folk do. Evidently.

Cornell University is a “chosen” institution — central to genetically modified public relations. The Cornell Alliance of Science is funded by Bill Gates, just like the failed golden rice experiment.

The Nobel laureates accuse Greenpeace of killing millions by delaying ghost rice — something the biotech industry accuses me of doing, for the same reason. Unlike golden rice — whose failure to launch is the industry’s own failure, the opposition to genetic engineering (and hence golden rice) is very real and successful. As Glenn Stone, a rice scientist at Washington University, states: “The simple fact is that after 24 years of research and breeding, golden rice is still years away from being ready for release.”

It is Borlaug’s Green Revolution monocultures that contributed to malnutrition by destroying biodiversity, which destroys the diversity of nutrients we need to be healthy. As Navdanya research has shown, biodiversity produces more food and nutrition per acre. Borlaug’s ghost is still shaping the industrial agriculture “miracles” based on monocultures of the mind and spin in place of science.

It is now more than 20 years since the “miracle” golden rice began to be promoted as the excuse to allow patents on life. The last time golden rice was resurrected when Patrick Moore of Allow Golden Rice Now was sent to Asia to push the failed promise. Women of the world organised and responded to Moore — Diverse Women for Diversity issued a declaration on International Women’s Day in 2015 titled Women and Biodiversity Feed the World, not Corporations and GMOs.

Golden rice is genetically engineered rice with two genes from a daffodil and one gene from a bacterium. The resulting GMO rice is said to have a yellow colouring, which is supposed to increase beta-carotene — a precursor of Vitamin A. It has been offered as a potential miracle cure for Vitamin A deficiency for 20 years.

But golden rice is a false miracle. It is a disease of nutritionally empty monocultures offered as a cure for nutritional deficiency. In fact, golden rice, if successful, will be 400 per cent less efficient in providing Vitamin A than the biodiversity alternatives that women have to offer.

 

To get your daily requirement of Vitamin A,

all you need to eat is one of the following:

Two tablespoons of spinach or cholai (amaranth) leaves or radish leaves

Four tablespoons of mustard or bathua leaves

One tablespoon of coriander chutney

One-and-a-half tablespoon of mint chutney

One carrot

One mango

 

So, if you want to be four times more efficient than 107 Nobel laureates, just eat a carrot!

Not only do these indigenous alternatives based on women’s knowledge provide more Vitamin A than golden rice ever will, and at a lower cost, but also provide multiple other nutrients. Our critique of golden rice is that even if it is developed, it will be inferior to the alternatives women have in their hands and minds. Women are being blocked from growing biodiversity and spreading their knowledge to address malnutrition, by rich and powerful men and their corporations who are blind to the richness of the earth and our cultures. 

Through their monoculture of the mind, they keep imposing monocultures of failed technologies, blocking the potential of abundance and nourishment. As I wrote in 2000, blindness to biodiversity and women’s knowledge is a blind approach to blindness prevention.

Grain.org concluded in Grains of delusion: Golden rice seen from the ground, way back in 2001: “The best chance of success in fighting Vitamin A deficiency and malnutrition is to better use the inexpensive and nutritious foods already available, and in diversifying food production systems in the fields and in the household. The euphoria created by the Green Revolution greatly stifled research to develop and promote these efforts, and the introduction of golden rice will further compromise them. Golden rice is merely a marketing event. But international and national research agendas will be taken by it.”

The Giddings-Entine-Byrne Nobel PR stunt was timed to coincide with the US Senate vote on the Dark Act — the denial to Americans of the right to know what they eat. With two decades of the GMO experiment failing to control pests and weeds, creating super pests and super weeds instead, there is now an attempt to push through the “next generation” of GMOs — such as “gene drives” for exterminating nutrient-rich species like the amaranth. Amaranth, a weed to the 107 Nobel laureates, is a richer source of Vitamin A than golden rice has promised it will be, when it grows up. The laureates would have us round up all the Vitamin A we already have in abundance, create deficiencies by exterminating it with RoundUp, and provide golden rice to alleviate the absence of Vitamin A.

Mr Gates is also supporting this failed miracle, as well as the failed communication through the Cornell Alliance for Science. He also funds the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition and Harvest Plus, the corporate alliance for biofortification. 

The corporate-controlled World Food Prize for 2016 has been announced for “Biofortification”. Scientists funded by Mr Gates have been given the prize for inventing an orange sweet potato. But the Maori in New Zealand had developed kumara, orange (beauregard) sweet potato, centuries ago. 

Mr Gates is also funding the biopiracy research of James Dale of Queensland, who took the Vitamin A-rich indigenous bananas of Micronesia and declared them to be his invention. 

The biopiracy of people’s biodiversity and indigenous knowledge is what Mr Gates is funding. The Gates fortification or Nobel fortification, will not nourish people. Fraud is not food.

The writer is the executive director of the Navdanya Trust

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