"All the world's a stage we pass through." - R. Ayana

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

The new PCB: Monsanto's Toxic Roundup weed killer turning up in air, rain and rivers

      The new PCB: Monsanto's Toxic Roundup weed killer turning up in air, rain and rivers


Last year, the US Geological Survey (USGS) released a report showing that air, rainwater and rivers across the Midwest US agricultural belt are routinely contaminated with high levels of glyphosate, a pervasive herbicide produced by biotechnology giant Monsanto. And according to some, Monsanto has likely known about this for some time, but chosen to hide it from the public.

After two years of gathering and analyzing environmental samples, USGS scientists determined that the more than 180 million pounds of glyphosate spread on conventional and genetically-modified (GM) crops every year is causing "significant" environmental contamination.

Certain that Monsanto is hiding its own critical information about Roundup, Ken Cook, president of the consumer advocacy organization Environmental Working Group (EWG), has written an open letter to Hugh Grant, chairman and president of Monsanto, petitioning him to immediately release any and all studies the company is hiding about the herbicide.

"Monsanto notoriously hid PCB (polychlorinated biphenyl) contamination in Alabama for decades," said Cook, referring to the infamous Monsanto PCB scandal where a plant producing the chemical from 1929 to 1972 ended up turning the entire town of Anniston, Ala., into a type of toxic waste zone -- and PCB is still showing up around the area to this day (http://www.naturalnews.com/023254_M...).

"We are asking that in this case, [Monsanto] tell the public what it knew about glyphosate contamination, and when it knew. It is inconceivable that a company with Monsanto's scientific capacity did not predict, and examine, the possibility of air and water contamination by glyphosate."

Back in the summer, it was revealed that Monsanto knew glyphosate caused birth defects, endocrine disruption, DNA damage, reproductive and developmental toxicity, neurotoxicity, and cancer. This was discovered in many of its own scientific studies. But according to reports, the company knowingly withheld this crucial information from the public, and from government officials, in order to keep the product on the market (see below).

So is it unreasonable, then, to assume that Monsanto is aware of, but withholding, critical data proving that glyphosate permeates into the deepest corners of the natural environment upon extensive use, contaminating everything in its path? Cook appears to think so, and we tend to agree with him.

You can read Cook's full letter to Monsanto's Grant here:


by Ethan A. Huff




Monsanto's Roundup linked to deadly diseases and birth defects: most people have no idea

A recent report put together by various professors, scholars and researchers affiliated with Earth Open Source, a collaboration group devoted to food issues, cites in great deal the multitude of peer-reviewed scientific studies which show that Monsanto's Roundup herbicide (glyphosate), which is applied to many genetically-modified (GM) crops, is responsible for causing birth defects, endocrine disruption, DNA damage, reproductive and developmental toxicity, neurotoxicity, and cancer -- and yet government agencies around the world continue to ignore this crucial information, and withhold it from the public, as they push for its approval or expanded use.

One of the main studies highlighted in the report was published in the August 2010 edition of Chemical Research in Toxicology, and it showed that Roundup causes malformations in frog and chicken embryos at levels much lower than those used on agricultural crops. And since Roundup-ready GM crops are designed to tolerate the herbicide, not resist it, they literally absorb Roundup, which is then passed on in much higher levels to humans that eat the tainted crops.

Another study conducted as part of the Argentine government's research group CONICET found high rates of the same or similar birth defect in humans living near GM soy crops that were routinely sprayed with Roundup, indicating a clear connection between the chemical and human birth defects. More than half of the growing land in Argentina is now dominated by GM soy, which is sprayed with about 53 millions gallons of Roundup every single year.

The authors of the report say that this and the bulk of other independent, indicting evidence against Roundup has been largely ignored by governments, including in the EU where new data requirements will demand that proper investigation into the safety of GMOs is conducted. Rather than rely on industry-funded pseudoscience that claims GMOs are safe, authors say those working for the people must rise to the occasion and take charge in having proper safety evaluations conducted on the safety of Roundup.

"The public ... has been kept in the dark by industry and regulators about the ability of glyphosate and Roundup to cause malformations," write the authors in their summary. "[T]he work of independent scientists who have drawn attention to the herbicide's teratogenic effects has been ignored, denigrated, or dismissed ... They have also contributed to the growing division between independent and industry science, which in turn erodes public trust in the regulatory process."

 by Ethan A. Huff


Study confirms GMO herbicide glyphosate contaminates groundwater supplies

Contrary to claims made by the chemical industry and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that it does not leach into groundwater, the deadly herbicide glyphosate, also known as Roundup, has been found to be fully capable of contaminating groundwater supplies. Published in the journal Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, a new study confirms that glyphosate is far from the benign crop protector that its proponents claim it is, and that it has the potential to cause widespread environmental damage.

For their study, researchers from the Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IEAWR) in Barcelona, Spain, performed a number of tests on groundwater samples to determine the presence of glyphosate. After employing a magnetic particle immunoassay (IA), as well as solid-phase extraction, liquid chromatography (LC), and tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS), they determined that, while soils absorb some of the chemical, glyphosate does not fully break down before reaching groundwater, which the government and the chemical industry have long claimed it does.

In fact, the findings completely contradict claims made by the chemical industry and the EPA that glyphosate has "little potential for leaching to ground water." According to the EPA, "[m]icrobes in the soil readily and completely degrade [glyphosate] even under low temperature condition and glyphosate does not tend to accumulate in aquatic life" (http://www.epa.gov/ogwdw/pdfs/facts...).

The EPA presumably obtained this false information directly from glyphosate's manufacturer, which just so happens to be the infamous Monsanto. But the agency has its own responsibility to verify safety claims on behalf of the public, which it obviously did not do for glyphosate. As a result, millions of gallons of this deadly chemical are doused on crops all around the world every year, and nobody knows how much of it has reached groundwater supplies.

Two other studies recently conducted by the US Geological Survey (USGS) also found glyphosate in streams and rivers, as well as in rainwater and even air surrounding agricultural areas that use glyphosate. And the worst aspect of this revelation is the fact that Monsanto has likely known about this environmental contamination for years, but has done nothing about it.

Even though the lie that glyphosate does not contaminate groundwater supplies has been officially debunked, it is highly unlikely that either the EPA or the chemical industry will reverse its errant position on the matter.


by Jonathan Benson

http://www.naturalnews.com/032920_Roundup_birth_defects.html#ixzz1jQoY0if1 & http://www.naturalnews.com/034504_glyphosate_groundwater_contamination.html

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