Leftish

Politics • Snark • EcoFriendly • Veggie • Photos I Like • Doctor Who When the world says, Give Up, Hope whispers, Try it One More Time. http://bit.ly/tt-blog; http://bit.ly/tt-pins; psychedelictara.etsy.com [NOTES* from Leftish - are always in brackets] Free counters!


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Change.org|Free Online Petitions

January 29, 2013 3:32 pm
48 Hours to get European leaders to ban bee killing pesticides

Quietly, globally, billions of bees are dying, threatening our crops and food. But in 48 hours the European Union could move to ban the most poisonous pesticides, and pave the way to a global ban that would save bees from extinction.

Four EU countries have begun banning these poisons, and some bee populations are already recovering. Days ago the official European food safety watchdog stated for the first time that certain pesticides are fatally harming bees.

Now legal experts and European politicians are calling for an immediate ban. But Bayer and other giant pesticide producers are lobbying hard to keep them on the market.

If we build a huge swarm of public outrage now, we can push the European Commission to put our health and our environment before the profit of a few.

We know our voices count! Last year, our 1.2 million strong petition forced US authorities to open a formal consultation on pesticides — now if we reach 2 million, we can persuade the EU to get rid of these crazy poisons and pave the way for a ban worldwide.

If you like Peaches, Apples, Cherries, Melons, Tomatoes and produce in general, please help.  We need to act before it’s too late.

Sign the urgent petition and send this to everyone — Avaaz and leading MEPs will deliver our message ahead of this week’s key meeting in Brussels:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/hours_to_save_the_bees/?bwpEsbb&v=21421

Bees don’t just make honey, they are vital to life on earth, every year pollinating 90% of plants and crops — with an estimated $40bn value and over one-third of the food supply in many countries. Without immediate action to save bees, many of our favourite fruits, vegetables, and nuts could vanish from our shelves.

Recent years have seen a steep and disturbing global decline in bee populations — some bee species are already extinct and some US species are at just 4% of their previous numbers. Scientists have been scrambling for answers and now the European Food Safety Authority is saying that toxic chemicals called neonicotinoid pesticides could be responsible for the bee deaths. France, Italy, Slovenia and even Germany, where the main manufacturer Bayer is based, have banned one of these bee-killing pesticides. But Bayer continues to export its poison across the world.

Now the issue is coming to a boil. EU parliamentarians are stepping up their pressure on the European Commission and key governments to push new legislation to ban the deadly pesticides, and we can offer them the public support they need to counter the powerful pesticide lobby. Sign the urgent petition to Europe’s leaders, then forward this email widely:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/hours_to_save_the_bees/?bwpEsbb&v=21421

SOURCES:

Pesticides pose danger to bees (European Voice)
http://www.europeanvoice.com/article/2013/january/pesticides-pose-danger-to-bees/76158.aspx

Crop pesticides are ‘killing our bees’ - says MEP (Public Service Europe)
http://www.publicserviceeurope.com/article/3007/crop-pesticides-are-killing-our-bees-says-mep#ixzz2JGICse6a 

Death knell for nerve agent pesticides in move to save bees (Independent)
http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/nature/death-knell-for-nerve-agent-pesticides-in-move-to-save-bees-8454443.html

Give Bees a Chance! (The Greens European Free Alliance)
http://www.greens-efa.eu/give-bees-a-chance-9012.html

Studies fault Bayer in bee die-off (Christian Science Monitor)
http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2012/0406/Studies-fault-Bayer-in-bee-die-off

June 4, 2012 10:15 am
90 Percent of Corn Seeds Are Coated With Bayer's Bee-Decimating Pesticide

via OrganicConsumers.org

"I’m doing something very odd this week: speaking at the annual conference of Croplife America, the main trade group for the US agrichemical industry. Croplife members include Monsanto, Dow, Bayer, and Syngenta, all massive multinational companies I write about regularly and witheringly. I am astonished that Croplife wants to hear what I have to say-what I think of the group’s member companies and their products is a matter of public record-and am curious to hear what they have to say to me.


As I prepared for the conference, a few interesting news items on the industry crossed my desk.

* As I’ve written before, Bayer’s neonicotinoid pesticides, which now coat upwards of 90 percent of US corn seeds and seeds of increasing portions of other major crops like soy, have emerged as a likely trigger for colony collapse disorder. Watch this NBC News report from last week linking bee kills in Minnesota to Bayer’s highly profitable product.

Meanwhile, the Columbus Dispatch reports similar bee die-offs in Ohio farm country, with beekeepers there, too, pointing the finger at Bayer.

* One of my biggest complaints about the agrichemical industry it its market dominance. As I say above, more than 90 percent of corn seeds planted today are treated with Bayer’s pesticide. What if a farmer wants to opt out, to plant seeds free of neonicotinoids? Good luck. According to a Pesticide Action Network press release I received today, farmers in the midwest are complaining that it’s virtually impossible to buy untreated seeds. In other words, farmers there have two choices: either pay up for Bayer’s poison, or exit the corn-growing business.”


»> Read the Full Article 

May 16, 2012 5:09 pm

f="http://leftish.tumblr.com/post/23195928281/a-plea-to-the-occupy-movement">A Plea To The Occupy Movement

May 4, 2012

By  (about the author)

opednews.com

Stopping global warming is the signature issue of our time. If we do not reverse global warming, nothing else will matter. Not bringing the Wall Street crooks to justice or closing down the corrupt banks or stopping our government from spying on us.

A vital step is closing down our nukes. Nuclear power is not a legitimate alternative to the burning of fossil fuels because it is far more dangerous albeit in a distinctly different way. The risk of further contamination of our earth on which we depend for our survival cannot be tolerated.

In spite of the risks, powerful corporate executives are looking to use profitable nuclear plants to address problems associated with stopping global warming.

Even if CEOs refuse to do so, we have to recognize this stark fact: nuclear radiation knows no boundaries. It is incumbent on us to join other countries in ending nuclear power for it is immoral that by keeping ours running we would be putting at risk countless others around the world.

The disaster in Japan reminds us again of how dangerous this form of energy is. A molten mass of radioactive material lies at the bottom of the three reactors that experienced meltdowns shortly after the earthquake and tsunami hit northern Japan on March 11, 2011.

Structural remains of the containment vessels serve the short-term purpose of preventing radiation from leaking out into the atmosphere and contaminating not only Japan, but also much of the world. A second earthquake, predicted by seismologists to take place within the immediate future, has the potential to bring those structures tumbling down.

A hundred thousand Japanese have already been relocated within the country. There are recent reports that during negotiations over ownership of the Kuril Islands, Japanese officials told their Russian counterparts that due to Fukushima they are looking at evacuating roughly forty million people to one or more sites overseas. (See   HYPERLINK “click here“ click here)

Continued use of nuclear energy is being seen as part of a mix of alternatives to fossil fuels. A recent rebroadcast of a PBS program (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/nuclear-aftershocks/) featured several interviews with energy experts who proclaimed that our future energy needs couldn’t possibly be met without nuclear power. For this reason plans are being made to replace the ones that will be phased out.

Since there was no indication to the contrary, one can assume that this calculation about future energy needs was based on a continuation of the present way of life in industrialized countries. In other words, as economic growth, a core requirement of the capitalist system, continues, even anemically, additional power will be needed for new factories, office buildings, shopping centers, businesses, homes, schools, sports arenas, and transportation of all kinds as well as for waging war.

Even James Hansen, the premiere climate change expert, fears that closing down nukes would bring about a greater reliance on coal, increasing global warming. It’s either/or. But is it, really? The Entergy-owned Indian Point reactor on Long Island, for example, provides a quarter of the electricity used by New York City (click here). Conservation alone could easily eliminate the need for this plant.

Why not begin now to work toward making our energy-consumption commensurate with the energy that we can produce from alternative sources? Those who have run the capitalist system for the last hundred years have extravagantly and exploitively ravaged the planet’s resources for their personal gain. It has to stop.

READ ENTIRE ARTICLE…

May 11, 2012 11:02 am
Bee Advocate Leads Grassroots Effort Against Systemic Pesticides

[NOTE* from Leftish: I wish I knew how I could get MORE people to CARE about this VERY SERIOUS ISSUE.  WE ARE LOSING THE BEES!!  What will happen to POOH BEAR if we LOSE all the BEES???]

As a growing body of research points to a link between colony collapse disorder and the class of pesticides known as neonicotinoids, a backyard gardener in Virginia has taken to the Internet in a grassroots effort to have Bayer’s neonicotinoid pesticides taken off the market.

Susan Mariner, who grew up working the garden with her father and grandmother, says the value of pollinators was impressed upon her from an early age.

“My grandmother taught me that bees are ‘our partners in the garden,’” she remembers.

Today, Mariner has her own suburban backyard garden, where she and her children grow edible crops, as well as what she calls a “Honey bee haven”: a section planted with colorful wildflowers and other plants that attract native pollinators. In the past several years, she says, her favorite winged visitors have made fewer appearances in the garden.

“I started watching bees as a young child in my father’s and my grandmother’s gardens and apple trees, which were awash in Honey bees when in bloom,” she says. “These days, when my children and I spend all day outside surrounded by thousands of blooms in our garden, we are thrilled to see a single Honey bee visit.”

Mariner says the decrease in pollinators has changed the way she and her neighbors garden. “Because there are so few pollinators, in recent years we have been forced to hand-pollinate many of our plants, something which would have been unthinkable to my grandmother. Many of my gardening neighbors have stopped growing plants that require insect pollination altogether.”

Increasingly, however, researchers are finding that the activities of Mariner’s other neighbors—those who are, in her words, “unwittingly coating their properties in neonicotinoids to achieve a picture-perfect lawn”—may be contributing to a dearth of pollinators.

Mariner used Change.org, a free petition-hosting website that harnesses social media in the name of activism, to launch a petition calling for the Environmental Protection Agency to ban Bayer’s neonicotinoid-based products. With each signature, Change.org sends an email to the person or persons targeted by the petition—in this case, three key EPA administrators. Mariner’s petition garnered a massive response, boasting over 138,000 signatures as of April 26, 2012.

Mariner says she’s thrilled with the reception her petition has received. “I’ve been extremely encouraged to see that once people learn that one-third of our food is pollinated by bees and that bees are in crisis, they are anxious to help and automatically begin spreading the word to others.”

Within days of Mariner’s petition going live, a team from the Harvard School of Public Health reported that they’d gathered still more evidence of an imidacloprid-CCD link. Over 23 weeks beginning in summer 2010, the researchers monitored bees in four different yards in Worcester County, Mass. Each yard had four bee hives treated with varying levels of imidacloprid, as well as one control bee hive. After 12 weeks of dosing, all the bees were alive, but after 23 weeks, 15 of the 16 treated bee hives had died off, with the highest-dose bee hives perishing first. The Harvard study will appear in June’s Bulletin of Insectology.

READ ENTIRE ARTICLE…

April 29, 2012 1:47 pm
SAVE THE BEES PETITION STILL GOING STRONG!

Even though the Bayer Shareholders Meeting was on Friday, people still CARE ABOUT THE FUTURE OF THE BEES and people are still signing the petition!

Unfortunately, it is almost exclusively being signed by folks in the Western Hemisphere.

There are no signers from India, China, Russia, Japan, The Middle East, Africa or Hawaii.

PLEASE IF YOU RESIDE IN ONE OF THE COUNTRIES LISTED ABOVE WHICH ARE MOSTLY ALL IN THE EASTERN HEMISPHERE, COULD YOU PLEASE RE-BLOG THIS, SO WE CAN GET ACTIVISTS FROM BOTH HEMISPHERES REGISTERING THEIR CONCERN?

April 27, 2012 12:05 pm

f="http://leftish.tumblr.com/post/21923939382/i-sent-this-email-to-every-pundit-i-could-today">I sent this email to every pundit I could today:

Hi Folks ~

I just have to try one more time.

I know you may think that the story of the Catholic Schoolteacher getting fired deserved air time, while the plight of our world’s dying bees did not, but I still have to try to get you to cover this story for the SAKE OF THE BEES, and for the FUTURE of LIFE ON EARTH.

We are all connected. We’ve already lost 1/3 of all the bees on our planet.  ONE THIRD!   If we lose the bees, do you realize how that will screw up the delicate balance of life on our planet?

Luckily, over 700,000 people worldwide disagree with you on the importance of this issue, and, in the last 24 hours have signed the petition to ask Bayer Stockholders to demand that Bayer stop producing neonicotinoids.

Interestingly, almost ALL of the signatures come from the “Western World” - Europe, North America and South America.  I have been watching the scroll for hours (when I signed yesterday, there were about 149,000 signatures), and I have not seen any signers from the Middle East, China, Japan or Russia.  Not one.  I don’t know why.

Anyway, I still think this story WOULD interest your viewers, and apparently people are STILL signing the petition at a tremendous rate.  They reached their first goal of 500,000 during the night, and they are now trying to get to 750,000.  They’ve gone up 5000 in the time it took me to write this email.

You can watch the scroll of signatures here.

Please reconsider airing this story…you are blessed with a “stage”…people watch your broadcasts…people who care about the health of our planet, people who care about the bees.

Surely a petition that is on its way to being signed by close to 750,000 in less than 24 hours deserves a minute of your air time.  No?

I hope so.

Thanks,

Tara

P. S.  Another 3500 people have signed since I last mentioned it, a few sentences above…at least please check it out and watch the scroll here!

April 16, 2012 4:04 pm
Scientists Call For Global Ban On Bee-Killing Pesticides

rawstory.com - First, bees are in severe decline. Half the UK’s honey bees kept in managed hives have gone, wild honey bees are close to extinction and solitary bees are declining in more than half the places they have been studied.

[NOTE* from Leftish: Our Planet is in CRISIS, have you noticed?

The Bee Problem is a crisis that can be fixed by PUBLIC PRESSURE…I urge you to get involved...the Planet’s future food supply depends on it!]

August 2, 2011 11:48 am
Our Appetite for Frog Legs May Be Wiping Out Frogs - Deadly chytrid fungus killing native amphibian species
Things you may not know: America, like Europe, has a pretty massive appetite for frog legs … and that hunger may very well be causing frog extinctions around the globe. Scientific American reports on a new study released this week that weighs the demand: 2,280 metric tons of frog legs, which come from somewhere between 450 million and 1.1 billion frogs, are imported to the US each year; the EU’s appetite is about double ours. Another 2,216 metric tons of live frogs enters our borders as well. All for a menu entry that’s harming frog populations in two ways, according to the report.
Read entire article…

Our Appetite for Frog Legs May Be Wiping Out Frogs - Deadly chytrid fungus killing native amphibian species

Things you may not know: America, like Europe, has a pretty massive appetite for frog legs … and that hunger may very well be causing frog extinctions around the globe. Scientific American reports on a new study released this week that weighs the demand: 2,280 metric tons of frog legs, which come from somewhere between 450 million and 1.1 billion frogs, are imported to the US each year; the EU’s appetite is about double ours. Another 2,216 metric tons of live frogs enters our borders as well. All for a menu entry that’s harming frog populations in two ways, according to the report.

Read entire article…