PN 92 Summer 2011 E-mail
Quarterly / June 2011

Editorial


2 articles are free this issue!

 

Victory! Endosulfan slated for global ban
In Geneva on April 29, the infamous pesticide endosulfan was added to the list of Persistent Organic Pollutants scheduled for worldwide phase-out. The decision rewarded PAN's 17 year campaign to get the major POPs pesticides banned everywhere. Kristin Schafer and Karl Tupper from PANNA recall the Stockholm Convention's beginnings and report on the recent Conference of Parties.

Self monitoring for self-protection
Pesticides used on cotton are particularly toxic, and in Senegalese communities, where they are used in unsafe ways and without understanding of their hazards, serious adverse health effects are common. Training communities to monitor use and health impacts in the cotton-growing zone of Velingara in Senegal is starting to improve practices. Dr Alassane Sarr and Mourtada Thiam from PAN Africa report.


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Pesticide use continues to grow in Brazil
Another year passes and Brazil still maintains its ranking as the world's largest consumer of pesticides. The consequences of this unenviable record are now starting to become clearer to the wider public, as cases of contamination are published. While pesticide companies introduce new pesticide-resistant crops, civil society launches a national campaign against pesticides. AS-PTA Agricultura Familiar e Agroecologia report on the situation.
 
Pesticides course to strengthen developing country capacity

A new course at the University of Cape Town is educating pesticide regulators from developing countries in pesticide risk management. Eloise Touni reports on this innovative approach.

EU undermines need for independent science in pesticide approval

For many years European government decisions on pesticides were based almost solely on industry toxicity tests. Whether these tests can be trusted after several major cases of fraud in the past, remains the big questions. Hans Muilerman from PAN Europe investigates.

From 'spraying to death' to judicious use in Kenya
Kenyan farmers rely greatly on the use of pesticides in agricultural production of fresh export vegetables sold in European countries. Stringent EU pesticide standards have introduced a new order in the use of pesticides in production of fresh vegetables destined for sale in developed countries. Julius Okello from the University of Nairobi shows that compliance with these standards has positive effects on farmers' triple bottom lines.

Plus: Campaign hero - Nick Mole

Roundup and birth defects - is the public being kept in the dark?
June 2011 saw the publishing of what could be one of the most significant reports highlighting the way in which regulators and the pesticide manufacturing industry conspire to keep the facts about the potential harm pesticides can do to human health hidden from the public. In this report by a group of international scientists, the researchers summarise the independent literature on glyphosate effects, and call on the EC to carry out an objective review urgently.

Plus: Another backward step as UK aims to change training requirements
In December 2010 DEFRA released its response to the public consultation on implementing new EU pesticide legislation, in particular how it intends to implement the new EU directive on the Sustainable Use of Pesticides. Nobody expected the proposed changes that have since come to light. Nick Mole reports.

Something nasty lurking upstream of Cambridge
Remediation of an old pesticide manufacturing site near Cambridge is posing risks for communities. The site is a reminder that development of safer crop protection remedies - especially those integrated with natural and biological controls - are important to protect not only farmland but also sites where the products are manufactured and stored. Jean Perraton, Dr Charles Turner and John Terry report on behalf of the Cam Valley Forum.

Plus: NGOs demand implementation of new EU pesticide legislation
The UK government concludes from its consultation on the new EU pesticide directive that only very minor changes are needed to existing regulations in the UK. Five leading conservation organisations disagree. Nick Mole from PAN UK explains.

A big step forward for pesticide dealers in Mali
In an effort to prevent stockpiles o fobsolete pesticides building up again following the removal of historic stocks, the Africa Stockpiles Programme in Mali is targetting the distribution chain. Mr Mamadou Camara and Dr Cheikh Hamallah Sylla of the PASP-Mali project report.

Plus: Poisonings in Burkina Faso support paraquat's inclusion in watch list
Paraquat has been on the radar of public health organisations since 1985, and has finally been flagged for action at the global level, invoking an underutilised mechanism of the Rotterdam Convention. Barbara Dinham explains.

And: POPs webinars

Resources
Book reviews: Stop poisonings, a guide to gardening for beneficial insects and an ode to bees.

 

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Guest editor: Eloise Touni

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photo: AS-PPTA Agricultura Familiar e Agroecologia

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PN 91 March 2011 E-mail
Quarterly / March 2011

Editorial


2 articles are free this issue!

 

Honey bees - an indicator species in decline
The role of neonicotinoid insecticides in the global demise of bee populations remains controversial. Heather Pilatic of PAN North America summarises and tracks the emergence of neonicotinoids in the United States where weakened regulations have fast-tracked them into the marketplace.

Could knotweed's reign of terror be over?
Introduced into Europe almost 200 years ago, Japanese knotweed has been naturalised since the 1880s. It is highly invasive and difficult to eradicate and is dreaded by horticulturalists and homeowners alike. Djami Deddour and Richard Shaw of CABI now report a promising new biocontrol agent. Could this spell the end for Japanese knotweed?


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Promoting IPM in Illinois childcare centres
Increasingly government and NGO recommendations and legislation are promoting adoption of IPM in schools and childcare facilities to prevent children's exposure to pesticides. However childcare providers often lack the information and confidence needed to implement these changes, despite the fact that young children are at their most vulnerable. A study was carried out to evaluate a successful IPM training programme in the Illinois childcare sector in the United States. Debby Mir, Yoram Finkelstein and Gayle Tulipano report on its successes.
 

Bee toxic pesticides are causing a buzz

A group of controversial pesticides are causing a buzz in the UK. In the last month they have made front page news and have been debated by MPs in the Houses of Parliament. They are the neonicotinoids, a group of chemicals that have become controversial due to the increasing evidence demonstrating their impacts on bees. Vicky Kindemba of Buglife reports.

Plus: UN says bee decline is global trend


The London Mayor's new campaign for a bee-friendly capital

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has turned his attention to protecting the beleaguered honey bee. His new Capital Bee campaign seeks to promote community-run beekeeping and to make London a 'bee-friendly' city. Pamela Brunton reports.


Continued poisonings and protest force change in Latin America
Over recent months, PAN Latin America Regional Centre has collated reports of numerous poisoning incidents in South America, Central America and the Caribbean. Increasing protests by citizens' groups, along with concerns from health and environmental officials, is finally leading to changes in government attitudes, with a series of harmful active ingredients to be banned. Stephanie Williamson reports.


Pesticide use and climate change - are they decoupled?
Many commentators speculate that the increasing temperatures and rising CO2 levels associated with climate change will increase pest and disease pressures on crops forcing farmers to use mroe pesticides. Lars Neumeister questions this assumption pointing out that there are many factors influencing pesticide use. Drawing on data from Scandinavia he suggests that regulation and policy instruments can have a greater influence on pesticide use than climate change.


Still no EU agreement to reduce dependency on biocides
EU biocide legislation is currently being revised. However, a coalition of environmental and health NGOs coordinated by PAN Germany has branded the proposed revisions as 'weak and inadequate to protect people or the environment from potentially toxic biocides'. Ministers to introduce requirements to promote non-chemical alternatives to biocides and to substitute toxic biocides with non- or less toxic products. Christian Schweer reports.

Plus: Beekeepers expose weaknesses in EU pesticide assessments
         Ecological agriculture can double food production says UN

Imidacloprid - factsheet
Imidacloprid is a systemic insecticide of the neonicotinoid family. It is widely used across the world and has a relatively low human toxicity. However, there is increasing concern over evidence suggesting impacts on bee populations and target pest resistance.

Resources
ENDURE network for diversifying crop protection
Book review: Systemic pesticides: a disaster in the making (Henk Tennekes 2010)

 

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