Articles on Pesticides

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President Donald Trump shakes the hand of EPA chief Scott Pruitt after he announcing the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris climate agreement on June 1, 2017. Pruitt submitted his resignation in July 2018 after a series of scandals. Win McNamee/AFP

Debate: Donald Trump’s war on science and its long-lasting consequences

Conservatives have long tried to attack regulators such as the EPA with “weaponized transparency”. Coupled with the inflation of uncertainty, the intent is to make regulations impossible.
Soybean seeds treated with neonicotinoids (blue) and treated corn seeds (red) versus untreated seeds. Ian Grettenberger/PennState University

Why it’s time to curb widespread use of neonicotinoid pesticides

US farmers are planting more and more acres with seeds coated with neonicotinoid pesticides. An ecologist explains why this approach is overkill and may be doing more harm than good.
Protesters at a rally on the state of the EPA organized by the American Federation of Government Employees union, April 25, 2018, in Washington, D.C. AP Photo/Alex Brandon

EPA staff say the Trump administration is changing their mission from protecting human health and the environment to protecting industry

Government agencies are supposed to listen to the industries they regulate, but what if they tune out everyone else? Scholars call this regulatory capture, and some staffers see it happening at EPA.
‘Silent Spring’ author Rachel Carson testifies before a Senate Government Operations Subcommittee in Washington, D.C. on June 4, 1963. Carson urged Congress to curb the sale of chemical pesticides and aerial spraying. AP

Would Rachel Carson eat organic?

Did Rachel Carson catalyze the organic farming movement, as many advocates claim? Or would she reject their ban on synthetic fertilizer and see organic as an inefficient way to feed the world?
Suspected infestation of Macrophomina phaseolina, a “novel” soil pathogen, in the non-fumigated buffer zone of a strawberry field. Julie Guthman

Healthy to eat, unhealthy to grow: Strawberries embody the contradictions of California agriculture

California produces 90 percent of the US strawberry crop, but growers face curbs on toxic chemicals that have helped their industry expand. Can a system centered on mass production become more sustainable?
A U.S. agency has warned the public about the dangers of flame retardants known as organohalogens that are found in baby toys, mattresses, furniture and electronics. (Pexels)

These chemicals are bad for babies and whales: Why haven’t they been banned in Canada?

The U.S. Consumer Protection Safety Commission has recommended a wide-spread ban on an entire class of flame retardants. Here's how Canada could follow suit.
Mosquitoes are the main vectors for dengue and zika. Insecticides are our best weapon against them. Anja Jonsson/Flickr

Mozzies are evolving to beat insecticides – except in Australia

Australian mosquitoes, unlike their Asian and American counterparts, can still be controlled by insecticides like pyrethroids. What lessons are there for managing pesticide resistance in insects?
Critics fear the merger of agricultural giants Bayer and Monsanto will drive an increase in use of pesticides. AgriLife Today/flickr

Growing food in the post-truth era

The global food system has been operating in post-truth mode for decades.
Two papers published today report that neonicotinoids have negative effects on honey bees and wild bees in realistic field experiments. from www.shutterstock.com

Common pesticides can harm bees, but the jury is still out on a global ban

Two large-scale studies confirm that neonicotinoid pesticides can harm bees. But the effects vary widely in different countries, suggesting that calls for a world ban would be premature.
Roll-your-own tobacco contains more additives than factory made cigarettes. So let’s not kid ourselves it’s safer. from www.shutterstock.com

Busting the myth that roll-your-own tobacco has fewer additives

Roll-your-own tobacco contains additives to stop it from drying out. So, it's hardly a "natural" or "healthier" alternative to factory made cigarettes.

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