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These cows on the Kerry Ridgeway in Wales are subject to annual TB testing - key to halving TB incidence over 5 years. Photo: John Clift via Flickr.

Bovine TB - biosecurity works, new Defra figures show

Lesley Docksey

18th June 2014

With the 6th International Conference on Bovine TB under way today in Cardiff, Lesley Docksey reports on Defra's latest statistics. BTB in England is falling - and it's falling fastest where the strongest biosecurity measures are in place, confirming the experience of Wales and Scotland. more...
If Europe's farms, like this one near Ludlow, England, provide benefits to wildlife, it's no thanks to the EU's agriculture policies. Photo: Robert Davies via Flickr.

The 'greening' of Europe's farms is a shameful failure

Lynn Dicks & Tim Benton

17th June 2014

The EU's farming policy is being touted as 'greener than ever' - but it's no such thing, write Lynn Dicks & Tim Benton. The 'green reforms' pay farmers for actions (and often inactions) that do not benefit wildlife, and contain no real or effective measures to help. more...
Coming to EU soon - unless the Parliament blocks it. Photo: Dawn One / © Linda and Mikael Hammond / IndyFoto.com via Flickr.

EU go-ahead for GMO crops

The Ecologist

12th June 2014

The EU's Environment Council voted today to devolve GMO decisions to member states - in effect allowing pro-GM governments to go ahead. This messy compromise threatens to allow GMO corporations to ride roughshod over Europe. more...
Switchgrass - 65 tons of it - baled and delivered to a poultry farm. In future, it will be sent in far larger volumes to bioethanol plants. Photo: University of Delaware Carvel REC via Flickr.

GMO bug makes bioethanol direct from grass

Tim Radford

15th June 2014

A new GM bacterium can produce bioethanol from coarse switchgrass, rather than using food crops like maize, writes Tim Radford. It does this by 'digesting' the tough cellulose that yeasts are unable to break down. more...
The social structure of badger families is perturbed by the loss of a single member, and this can cause the spread of any TB they may be harbouring. Photo: Tim Brookes via Flickr.

HSI calls on farmers - 'go badger-friendly' to control bovine TB

Lesley Docksey

10th June 2014

Following new research showing that even culling a single badger from a family can cause a 'perturbation' that spreads TB, a new call has gone out on farmers to give up on culling, and 'go badger friendly' to control the disease. more...
Sunset over the Sacramenta River - but how much longer will it be there? Photo: Eric Leslie via Flickr.

Stealing the Sacramento River - California agro‑barons' last huge water grab

Will Parrish

17th June 2014

In California, water no longer runs to the sea - it runs towards money, writes Will Parrish. Most of the state's water is already controlled by agribusiness elites. Now, backed by politicians, they are planning to grab the little that's left, leaving nature and indigenous communities high and dry. more...
a female Monarch Butterflyen (Danaus plexippus) laying an egg on a Mexican Milkweed (Asclepias curassavica ) at the Tyler Arboretum. Photo: © Derek Ramsey via Wikimedia.

Heavy herbicide use on GMO crops raises Monarch butterfly extinction fear

John Pleasants

10th June 2014

Thanks to herbicide use on GMO crops in the US and Canada, Monarch butterfly numbers have crashed - the milkweeds the larvae feed on now survive mainly in 'conservation reserve' land and roadsides - and there's a 5% chance the Monarch will be extinct within 100 years. more...
Our green and pleasant land deserves better than this! Photo: Matthew via Flickr.

Final fling of a government of lost opportunities

Natalie Bennett

6th June 2014

The Government has let down Britain with its repeated failures to seize the opportunities of green growth, healthy local food, better housing, environmental protection - and is instead pinning all its hopes on flawed, outmoded ideologies that betray our futures. more...
Farming in Poland, the traditional way. Photo: Jejma via Flickr.

The farmer is the future

Julian Rose

13th June 2014

In our modern world of supermarkets and on-demand delivery, its easy to forget about the few remaining 'real farmers' who grow healthy, wholesome food, writes Julian Rose. But it won't be long before we give them the appreciation they deserve ... more...
Small farmers - like Ndomi Magareth, planting beans here on her land in Cameroon - 'are losing land at a tremendous rate. It’s a land reform movement in reverse', says GRAIN’s Henk Hobbelink. Credit: Monde Kingsley Nfor/IPS

'Land reform in reverse' - land grabs are increasing world hunger

Stephen Leahy

3rd June 2014

Small farmers are losing out as the world's farmland is becoming concentrated in ever fewer hands - and food security is suffering as a consequence. If we do nothing to reverse this trend, writes Stephen Leahy, the world will lose its capacity to feed itself. more...
A farmer in Lushoto, Tanzania prepares seedlings for transplanting. Photo: P. Kimeli /  CIFOR.

Want to restore the world's forests? Begin with these 'surprising seven' countries

Katie Reytar / WRI

3rd June 2014

There's two billion hectares of land around the world crying out to have their tree cover restored, writes Katie Reytar. But where to begin? Here's seven countries that offer huge reforestation opportunities - and every one of them will take you by surprise ... more...
These fields of oilseed rape / canola near Avebury, Wiltshire, England, could soon be GMO if the EU deal is approved next week. Photo: *Bettina* via Flickr.

Deceitful compromise clears the way for GMO crops in Europe

Lawrence Woodward

31st May 2014

An unholy alliance of pro- and anti-GMO countries have struck a deal that will sweep away the obstacles to genetically engineered crops in the EU, writes Lawrence Woodward. more...

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Gottfried Gloeckner.

Gottfried Glöckner - 'how Syngenta destroyed my life for telling the truth about GMOs'

F William Engdahl

2nd June 2014

German dairy farmer Gottfried Glöckner told F William Engdahl how the Anglo-Swiss GMO and agrochemicals giant Syngenta tried to crush him after he denounced the company's products as toxic - recruiting the resources of the German state and legal system to destroy his life. more...
White storks nesting at Coto Doñana, Spain. Photo: Ian Keith via Flickr.

Thanks to EU laws and money, Coto Doñana rises from disaster

Laurence Rose

4th June 2014

Spain's Coto Doñana shows the value of EU conservation law, writes Laurence Rose, as the UK tries to get rid of the Birds and Habitats Directives. Both have proved essential to the protection and restoration of one of Europe's greatest wetlands. more...
Blacks and Hispanics in the US are more likely to get reproductive cancers - could this be the result of Atrazine poisoning? Photo: A Black family picking cotton, 1937. By Louise Boyle via Kheel Center / Flickr.

Atrazine: Syngenta's herbicide doesn't just poison frogs - it could give you cancer

F William Engdahl

2nd June 2014

Tyrone Hayes has fought a 15-year battle with Syngenta following his discovery that its herbicide Atrazine scrambles sex in frogs, writes F William Engdahl. Now he wants to know - is Atrazine the cause of the US's 2-fold reproductive cancer excess among Blacks and Hispanics? more...
Marching against Monsanto in Washington DC. Photo: Stephen Melkisethian via Flickr.

Why we are Marching against Monsanto

Dr Mae Wan Ho

28th May 2014

A huge turnout was recorded for the 2014 March Against Monsanto, with protests in over 400 cities in 52 countries and 47 US states. Dr Mae Wan Ho says this worldwide movement will keep on growing, until Monsanto and its toxic products are defeated. more...
Montage of March Against Monsanto events yesterday by WTFRLY.COM.

Fifty-two countries join 'March against Monsanto'

The Ecologist

25th May 2014

Over 400 cities in 52 countries joined the March Against Monsanto yesterday with as many as a million people, or more, joining the global protest. more...
A bee in the hand ... this Swedish queen is unusually well-travelled. Photo: Nikki Gammans.

Extinct 30 years ago - the short-haired bumble bee takes to the skies

Michael Parker

31st May 2014

The short haired bumblebee was declared extinct in the UK 30 years ago. But now the species is being re-introduced in the flower-rich meadows and field margins of Kent, writes Michael Parker - helped along by sympathetic local farmers. more...
Peter Melchett farms organically at Courtyard Farm in Norfolk. Photo: Peter Melchett.

Organic inspections, organic growth

Peter Melchett

24th May 2014

Organic farming has changed, but for the better, writes Soil Association head of policy and Norfolk organic farmer Peter Melchett. As never before, organic inspections are central to the delivery of environmental and animal care, and food you really can trust. more...
No GMO! Photo: www.gmofreeglobal.org/ .

Global GMO-free Coalition launches with 4.5 million members

The Ecologist

20th May 2014

The Global GMO Free Coalition brings together 60 groups across six continents with over 4.5 million members - all committed to fighting GMO / biotech industry propaganda. Meanwhile Russia is leading the way to GMO freedom ... more...
GMOs - we will fight them in the grocery aisles! Photo: Jaro Larnos via Flickr.

GMOs - Boycott the GMA 'traitor brands'

Ronnie Cummins

15th May 2014

The mighty Grocery Manufacturers Association is to sue Vermont for making food companies label GMOs in their products. Ronnie Cummins calls on all concerned consumers to boycott GMA companies and products - starting with their 'traitor brands' ... more...
Nanjunda - Professor Nanjundaswamy. Photo: Adrian Arbib.

Cremate Monsanto!

Heathcote Williams

14th May 2014

Heathcote Williams remembers India's great campaigner Professor Nanjunda's whose direct actions against Monsanto, KFC, McDonalds, Coca-Cola and the WTO inspired a nation and created an unstoppable movement of 10 million ... more...
Grand View Ranch, Utah. Photo: Don Graham via Flickr.

We must rid the American West of 'welfare ranching'

George Wuerthner

22nd June 2014

The image of the rancher in the rugged West is one of self-sufficiency and a tough defiance of government, writes George Wuerthner. But the truth is that ranchers, especially those using federal land, depend on a host of generous subsidies, both economic and ecological. more...
Common nightingale (luscinia megarhynchos). Photo: gynti_46 via Flickr.com.

Celebrate 'National Nightingale Night' on May 18th

Chris Rose

13th May 2014

Britain's nightingales are in decline - not least because of intensive farming, and our insistence on building over their last refuges. But their song is as unforgettable as ever, writes Chris Rose, and that will surely be the key to valuing them more ... more...
Organic farming as it used to be ... sow with piglets at Sandy Lane Farm, Oxfordshire. Photo: Sandy Lane Farm.

Organic certification - inorganic bureaucracy

Julian Rose

17th May 2014

Organic certification used to be carried out by real farmers in wellies, who knew all the tricks and could spot dodgy practice on the land at 100 paces, writes Julian Rose. Today's certifiers arrive in patent leather shoes and get no further than the office - and this is meant to be an improvement? more...

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