Farmers can do more than producing food and fiber. They can also produce clean air, clean water, and abundant habitat for wildlife. But farm policies are doing too little to reward good stewardship and too much to underwrite unsustainable crop and animal production by the largest and most successful farm businesses.
Reliable Big Ag accomplice Collin Peterson, chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, made clear last week that he plans to vote NO on the pending climate bill, after signaling as much this spring. Peterson's move comes after he extracted lucrative concessions in the bill for Big Ag -- concessions that were sold as crucial to securing agriculture's support for the legislation.Read More
Last summer, EWG President Ken Cook dropped in on the Kickapoo Country Fair held by Organic Valley - a farmer-owned cooperative of more than 1,300 organic family farmers nationwide – in LaFarge, Wisc. There he was interviewed by Dorothee Royal-Hedinger, the host, web video producer and blogger for OrganicNation.TV website.Read More
It's tough to rattle a scientist's cage. But Bob Stallman, president of the American Farm Bureau, has found a way by scoffing repeatedly at the biblical calamities that climate change is predicted to bring down on agriculture. Stallman denies that climate change even exists and pounds the denier drum daily to the members of America's largest agriculture organization.Read More
In October, EWG released a report that questioned the misguided claims made by farm lobby organizations and their patrons in Congress who are arguing that climate change legislation would cause devastating increases in the costs of production. Crying Wolf clearly demonstrated that any increases in farmers' production costs would be minimal and would be lost in the background noise of annual swings in income caused by yield variation, crop prices and the cost of seed and chemicals -- a small price to pay to protect agriculture from the crippling droughts, volatile weather and increased pest and disease outbreaks expected as the planet warms.Read More
Social media is empowering the people. Right? Even if you're not convinced of that just yet, one thing is for sure: without your votes (yes, that's with an "s"), EWG won't win a $15,000 grant from the impressive Free Range Studios (they produced Annie Leonard's wildly successful 'The Story of Stuff').
Taking steps to confront the threat of a warming planet would have the huge added payoff of making people healthier around the globe, a group of scientists have concluded in a unique package of new research papers.
The health “co-benefits” of cutting greenhouse gas emissions include significantly cutting rates of heart and artery disease, respiratory infections, strokes, various cancers, lung disease and dementia, the scientists found. They argue that the financial savings from these health gains could offset a significant portion of the economic cost of reducing emissions.Read More
In a new report for Worldwatch Institute, Dr. Samuel Myers outlines the impacts of global environmental change on human health in compelling detail, from the increases in certain infectious diseases to food and water scarcity among vulnerable populations. Humans are changing the environment, both locally and globally, in unprecedented ways and the consequences of these changes are already being felt in many communities across the planet.Read More
The dedicated folks at The Organic Center released a hard hitting report today, Impacts of Genetically Engineered Crops on Pesticide Use: The First Thirteen Years.Read More
“Today’s high (or low) temperature was an all-time record for this date.” How many times have you heard that? This kind of news has been a staple of local weather forecasts for decades. And if you’d been keeping track, you would have noticed something curious. The number of days that produce sweltering record high temperatures has been eclipsing the number of days with frigid record lows.Read More
A Prairie Home Companion, the long-running radio variety show, Robert Altman movie and purveyor of powdermilk biscuits,usually broadcasts from St. Paul, Minnesota. Last week's performance originated from Des Moines. During the show's the Lives of the Cowboys segment, the following exchange transpired.Read More
The Agriculture Research Service (ARS) of the US Department of Agriculture released a surprising bit of climate change-related research on Tuesday, work that suggests that getting big cuts in greenhouse gas emissions from simple changes in common farming practices may not be as easy as many hope.Read More
Crying Wolf, EWG's recent report on current climate change legislation, convincingly debunked exaggerated claims that a cap-and-trade system to limit greenhouse gases will increase costs for the agriculture sector. Many farm state lawmakers and agri-lobby groups have been recklessly misstating and inflating the cost of protecting agriculture from the ravages of climate change, using flawed conclusions drawn from their analysis of the Waxman-Markey climate bill (officially the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 or ACES).Read More
Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico watershed informational slides.Read More
When we talk about California and climate change, agriculture matters. California's agriculture sector faces two major challenges:
- Reduce its contribution to climate change.
- Arm itself against the threats a warming planet poses to agricultural production.
Farm industry leaders and their supporters in Congress are trying to derail climate change legislation by insisting that the House-passed bill, the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES), will cause ruinous increases in the costs of production for farmers. This threat is so potentially devastating, they claim, that climate change legislation should be shelved or loaded up with concessions that send more money to their agricultural constituents.Read More