EJToday: Top Headlines
EJToday is SEJ's selection of new and outstanding stories on environmental topics in print and on the air, updated every weekday. SEJ also offers a free e-mailed digest of the day's EJToday postings, called SEJ-beat. SEJ members are subscribed automatically, but may opt out here. Non-members may subscribe here. EJToday is also available via RSS feed. Please see Editorial Guidelines for EJToday content.
"Earth-friendly perennial grain crops, which grow with less fertilizer, herbicide, fuel, and erosion than grains planted annually, could be available in two decades, according to researchers writing in the current issue of the journal Science."
"The Supreme Court ruled on Monday that a federal judge had erred in prohibiting the planting of Monsanto’s genetically modified alfalfa seed until a federal government agency completed a detailed environmental review."
Small-scale farmers who want to grow and sell meat locally have been hampered by federal regulation of slaughterhouses. Now mobile slaughterhouses are helping those farmers get back in the game.
"Federal officials are launching efforts today in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia to enlist farmers in targeted watersheds in a concerted effort to curb pollution running off their land."
"Organic food from China, like tea and frozen broccoli, has increasingly found its way onto American store shelves, typically emblazoned with the green 'U.S.D.A. organic' seal also found on food grown in this country. ... Now serious questions about certification in China have been raised by the United States Agriculture Department."
"The EPA, declaring that endosulfan is unsafe for farm workers, moves to ban one of the last organochlorine pesticides left in the United States. Like DDT, endosulfan accumulates in the environment and in the bodies of people and wildlife, and is transported around the world to remote places."
Amish farmers in Pennsylvania, whose plain living goes with a faith-based stewardship of the environment, are facing growing scrutiny for some practices the government says pollute streams.
"The Agriculture Department will approve for broad use [Tuesday] a genetically modified soybean engineered to contain healthier oils, the opening salvo in a biotech oil fight between DuPont Co. and its rival, Monsanto Co."
"In a legal settlement that could affect the entire U.S. meat industry, the Environmental Protection Agency has agreed to identify and investigate thousands of factory farms that have been avoiding government regulation for water pollution with animal waste."
"If you're eating non-organic celery today, you may be ingesting 67 pesticides with it, according to a new report from the Environmental Working Group."
A new viral disease that destroys cassava crops is spreading explosively in East Africa. Cassava, the world's third largest source of calories, is eaten by some 800 million people in Africa, South America, and Asia.
"US researchers claim to have identified a new potential cause for Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) in honeybees." They think a synergistic effect of two pathogens -- a fungus and a family of viruses -- may be the culprit.
Recent outbreaks of foodborned diseases like E. coli have pressured USDA to tighten food safety rules. The sources of outbreaks are often large industrial operation -- but small farmers who can't afford to comply may be forced out of business.