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Senator Jon Tester of Montana Insults US Farmers

Senator Tester (D, Montana) has been pushing an amendment to the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act of 2010 exempting small farms from the bill’s provisions.  The wisdom of this legislation and the amendment are subjects of legitimate debate, but the Senator reveals his actual agenda in this quote: “Small producers are not raising a commodity, […]

November 23rd

We Also Need To “Restore Sanity” In Food Politics

[social_buttons] Yesterday I drove 28 miles to attend the San Diego version of the “Rally to Restore Sanity.”  I’m glad I did.  Even in this Southern California bastion of political conservatism, there were at least 200 people meeting at Dick’s Last Resort to watch the DC event and to encourage each other that we are […]

October 31st

Creating Satans: Collective Myth Building About Monsanto, Obama etc

[social_buttons] I noticed an interesting phenomenon this week  while watching the links coming in to one of Jeremy Bloom’s recent posts on RGB.  A great deal of traffic was coming in from two referring sites that are Christianity-related. Both had previously posted links to an incendiary Pravda “article” that misinterpreted an already sensationalized statement in a […]

October 24th

How To Make Fresh Produce More Sustainable? Actually Eat It!

There are lots of well intended efforts underway to increase the “sustainability” of fresh fruit and vegetable production.  This includes a recent announcement from Wal-Mart saying that they want to use their influence in the market to drive positive change. All these efforts focus on how efficiently farmers use land, fertilizer, fuel, electricity, water and […]

October 20th

Remembering A Time Of Less Polarized Environmental Politics

As we approach this hyper-partisan 2010 election, the “environment” has become just one more point of polarization, particularly around the question of Global Climate Change.  All but one Republican Senate candidate candidate today passively or actively opposes the idea that human activity is responsible for greenhouse gas effects on climate.  It is hard to find […]

October 18th

When Fear Wins: Fallout From the “Dirty Dozen” List

[social_buttons] Experts in Nutrition and Public Health agree that a healthy diet should include lots of fresh fruits and vegetables.  These foods have multiple health benefits because they provide dietary fiber, trace minerals, vitamins, anti-oxidants, and a wide variety of compounds that enhance vein health, reduce cancer risk, and bind dangerous toxins (just to name […]

October 12th

NJ Gov Cancels Mass Transit Project. Is America Going Off the Rails?

Two days ago, New Jersey’s Republican Governor, Chris Christie, cancelled the largest mass transit project in the US – a tunnel under the Hudson River into Manhattan that would double the region’s commuter rail capacity. He said there wasn’t enough money – despite billions of dollars in Federal aid that were already committed. Quite aside […]

October 9th

White House Won’t… er… WILL Go Solar

Beth Buczynski reports over at Care2 that despite last month’s strange snubbing of solar, the Obama White House will go solar after all. “By the end of this spring, there will be solar panels that convert sunlight into electricity and a solar hot water heater on the roof of the White House,” Energy Secretary Steven Chu […]

October 6th

Some New Hope For The Future of Chocolate

Most of us take something like chocolate for granted.  In fact there are lots of issues with the current situation for the farmers who produce it, and with the future supply for the rest of us. Fortunately, talented people have already been working hard on this issue. Today Mars, the USDA and IBM announced the […]

September 15th

White House Rejects Carter-era Solar Panel

This just in from Bill McKibben: Dear friends, I just walked out of a disappointing meeting with the White House: they refused to accept the Carter solar panel we came to Washington to deliver and said that they would continue their “deliberative process” to discuss putting solar panels back on the White House roof. Well, […]

September 10th

Do Non-Farmers Have A Key Role In Sustainable Agriculture?

Indeed!  Some people who will never farm could have a pivotal role in advancing the sustainability of farming.  I’m not talking about urban farming or consumer choices (“Sustainable”, “Organic”, “local”…).  I’m talking about land ownership and rental contracts. Some Background: In spite of what you hear, “family farms” are still the overwhelming way that US […]

September 8th

Help Obama put solar (back) on the White House

By Bill McKibben Amid the heated rhetoric about the administration that’s dominating the site at the moment, here’s a potential chance to help with a very concrete project. Today we’re headed down the East Coast with a solar panel—it used to be on the White House, installed by Jimmy Carter in 1979. The Reagan administration took […]

September 8th

Lawsuit Against EPA Could Have Major Downside

Last week the NRDC (National Resource Defense Council) and PAN (Pesticide Action Network) sued the EPA demanding that it ban a particular insecticide called Chlorpyrifos.  I have written to some of my NRDC contacts to ask: “why chlorpyrifos?” Is Chlorpyrifos As Scary As They Say? Although you would never know it from reading the uncritical […]

July 26th