Saturday, June 19, 2010

Disturbing Trend

I've been noticing something lately that I don't really remember seeing before.  Instead of mowing along the sides of fields and roadways, farmers, cities and counties are spreading Roundup.  How is this a good idea?

I'm wary of using pesticides and herbicides on everything nowadays.  The very point of these products is to poison.  I don't want poison on my foods, in the air I breathe and on my skin.  Now they are linking pesticides to  ADD and ADHD and maybe even autism.

I don't know if any of you are familiar with Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) among honey bees.  It's a phenomena that causes the worker bees to simply disappear.  Many causes have been cited such a disease or migratory bee keeping (keepers more around so bees can't find their hives anymore).  A theory that is growing in  popularity among scientists is pesticide use is causing CCD.  Pesticides can cause a couple problems.  
  • The pesticide interferes with the hormones that naturally allow a bee to home in on it's hive.  Basically, it gets lost and can't find its way.
  • Pesticide flat out kill or mame the bees.  It's called a pesticide for a reason.
A lack of honey bees means a lack of foods that are pollinated by honey bees.  Apples, tomatoes, you name it.  And it's spreading.  This map is just as of March 2007!

I don't know about you, but even if we couldn't scientifically link pesticide and herbicide use to any malady, it simply doesn't make any sense.  At the commercial level they are all made from petroleum.  The petroleum is trucked to the factory, the pesticide is made from the trucked petroleum, then it's trucked to the warehouse, then to the purchaser.  It's ridiculous.  

Why don't we try beneficial inter-planting or simply go nuts and try beneficial nematodes or tobacco juice?  Because all the agribusiness (even the local extension office!) types tell us we have to use the latest weed or insect killer.  And why do we have to use the latest?  Because weeds and insects are already developing increased resistance to last year's model.  Why do we believe these guys?  They're the folks who stand to make money off us.  They quote studies that say their latest poison is non-toxic to humans.  A study they paid for.  And haven't we heard time and time again about corporations that fund multiple studies and simply hide the results of the non-favorable ones?  

Didn't we learn anything from Big Tobacco and Pfizer?

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