Friday, December 26, 2008

Marine contaminants 'terrifyingly high'....And More

Thu 25 Dec 2008
Long Beach Press-Telegram

by Melissa Pamer
More than 35 years after local companies stopped dumping now- bannedtoxic chemicals off the Palos Verdes Peninsula, a new study shows thatseals and sea lions feeding in the area have contamination levels thatare "terrifyingly high," according to one environmental advocate.
The Cal State Long Beach study found that California sea lions,Pacific harbor seals and northern elephant seals have much higherconcentrations than previous data has shown for the pesticide DDT anda group of industrial compounds called PCBs.
The chemicals were dumped off San Pedro's White Point from 1947 to1971 by Harbor Gateway-based Montrose Chemical Corp. and othercompanies. The ocean pollution resulted in a decade-long legal battleand, in 2001, a $140million settlement with state and federalgovernments.
More than 120 tons of DDT and PCBs settled on the Palos Verdes Shelf,contaminating many varieties of marine life and changing fishinghabits along the coast.
The CSULB study, published this month in the scientific journal MarinePollution Bulletin, said the contamination levels it found were amongthe highest ever detected worldwide for marine mammals.
"The results are extremely disturbing because the concentrations ofDDT are so extremely high," said Mark Gold, executive director of Healthe Bay. "I personally have not seen values this high in any species."
Gold said the study indicates that the federal EnvironmentalProtection Agency "urgently" needs to move forward with its delayedclean-up effort. A plan is set to be released early next year, an EPAofficial said.
Last year, a broad federal study, funded by the Montrose settlement,showed that many species of fish along the Palos Verdes Shelf remainedcontaminated. Advisories to anglers about limiting consumption havebeen in effect since 1991.
Previous studies have looked at contaminants in sea lions and sealsalong the California coast, but few have focused specifically on thePalos Verdes Shelf, a DDT "hot spot."
The new study looked at 145 seals and sea lions - called pinnipeds -that were stranded on the coast of Los Angeles and Orange countiesfrom 1994 to 2006, using tissue samples saved by marine mammal centersin San Pedro and Laguna Beach.
California sea lions had, on average, 594parts per million of DDT and87 parts per million for PCB. Results were much higher for Pacificharbor seals, which had a small sample size, and lower for Northernelephant seals, which typically come to the region's waters only forbreeding and molting.
The pinnipeds' high body-fat content makes them particularlysusceptible to the accumulation of fat-loving DDT and PCBs, as doestheir position higher on the food chain, said Gwen Goodmanlowe, theCal State Long Beach lecturer who published the study with graduatestudent Mary Ellen Blasius.
Concentrations of the chemicals generally declined over the period ofthe study but remained high.
"To me, the take-home message is that we stopped dumping this stuff30- something years ago, and it's still causing problems," Goodmanlowesaid.
"We don't know if they're dying from these (chemicals), but there is apossibility that these animals with these high levels are suspectableto other things - cancer, suppressed immune systems," she said.
During the Montrose litigation, seals and sea lions were never provedto show measurable effects from the contamination, so the species arenot part of restoration plans, said David Witting, a federal fishbiologist.
"There was never any doubt that there was lots of DDT in sea lions,"said Witting, who helps oversee restoration programs funded by theMontrose settlement. "The question is, is it hurting them?"
That matter has never been investigated, in part because it's adifficult topic to study and it's almost impossible to isolate theeffects of DDT and PCBs, Goodmanlowe said.
The effects of chemical contaminants of pinnipeds may have beenignored in part because - unlike other animals such as bald eagles -sea lions and seals have seen continued population growth, Wittingsaid.
melissa.pamer@dailybreeze.com
http://www.presstelegram.com/news/ci_11311530
==============================
Topics: pharmaceuticals science womenSource: New York Times, December 12, 2008
According to internal documents, the pharmaceutical company Wyeth"paid ghostwriters to produce medical journal articles favorable toits female hormone replacement therapy Prempro." As early as 1997,Wyeth paid the "medical writing firm" DesignWrite to publish favorablejournal articles about Prempro under academics' names. "Companyexecutives came up with ideas" for the articles, "titled them, draftedoutlines, paid writers to draft the manuscripts, recruited academicauthors and identified publications to run the articles -- all withoutdisclosing the companies' roles to journal editors or readers." Wyethpreviously claimed that authors had "played significant roles" injournal articles. The American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecologypublished one ghostwritten article in May 2003, a year after Wyeth'sPrempro was linked to breast cancer (which recent findings confirmed).The ghostwritten article, published under the name of Australianprofessor John Eden, claimed there was "no definitive evidence"linking hormone therapy to cancer. Just before the federal studylinking Prempro to cancer was published, a Wyeth executive askedDesignWrite "to increase the number of positive journal articles" onPremarin, another Wyeth hormone replacement drug.
http://www.prwatch.org/
==============================Warning Industry Propaganda Below==============================
Dec 21, 2008
LM Direct!
Croplife America, RISE ask Ontario Premier to reconsider pesticide ban
WASHINGTON, D.C. — CropLife America (CLA) and RISE (ResponsibleIndustry for a Sound Environment) in letters to the Premier ofOntario, Canada, Dalton McGuinty, are encouraging the Premier topursue another regulatory course of action than one currently proposedaimed at banning the sale and use of certain pesticides.
Both organizations expressed concern the draft regulation in itscurrent form may establish a new, detrimental non-scientific basis forall pesticide regulation. This would increase the financial burden, ata time of great economic stress, to farmers as well as homeowners andother pesticide users who could even see property values diminishbecause of the lack of effective and safe pest control products.
"Though the proposed regulation currently notes agriculture as amongthe excepted uses for certain classes of pesticides, if invasive pestscannot be managed on all lands, the threat greatly increases onfarmlands and crops adjoining these areas where pesticides are banned.This effectively turns the latter into incubation factories for pestsand disease, which can easily migrate to crops," said CropLifepresident and CEO, Jay Vroom.
The class of pesticide product targeted by the ban, known as specialtypesticides, is used in and around homes, businesses and public areas.This includes lawns, flowers and trees and for vegetation managementin water, along roadways, railroads and utility rights-of-ways. Theseproducts are essential to protecting public health and safety and tomanaging non-native plants and plant diseases.
"The potential damage of insect and weed infestations is much morethan 'cosmetic'," said Allan James, president of RISE. "Without themeans to effectively control harmful pests, there exists a very realpossibility for harm to children and pets from stinging insects and tomotorists and highway workers from unmanaged brush and invasiveplants."
Emphasizing the strides made by the United States and Canada, alongwith Mexico, under the NAFTA trade agreement, toward harmonizing andimproving pesticide regulation on the basis of science, CLA and RISEstrongly encourage withdrawal of the proposed regulation andconsideration of an alternative, fact-based approach lest NAFTAprogress be set back.
http://www.landscapemanagement.net/landscape/Green+Industry+News/Croplife-America-RISE-ask-Ontario-Premier-to-recon/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/572727?contextCategoryId=465
CropLife America - SourceWatch Profilehttp://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=CropLife_America
Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment - SourceWatch Profilehttp://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Responsible_Industry_for_a_Sound_Environment
==============================
Press Release
For Immediate Release:Friday, December 12, 2008
Contact: Susan HelmickOffice: (202) 872-3884shelmick@croplifeamerica.org
CLA AND RISE ISSUE LETTERS TO CANADIAN PREMIER ON PROPOSED PESTICIDEBAN
WASHINGTON, D.C. — CropLife America (CLA) and RISE (ResponsibleIndustry for a Sound Environment) in letters to the Premier ofOntario, Canada, Dalton McGuinty, are encouraging the Premier topursue another regulatory course of action than one currently proposedaimed at banning the sale and use of certain pesticides. Bothorganizations expressed concern the draft regulation in its currentform may establish a new, detrimental non-scientific basis for allpesticide regulation. This would increase the financial burden, at atime of great economic stress, to farmers as well as homeowners andother pesticide users who could even see property values diminishbecause of the lack of effective and safe pest control products.
"Though the proposed regulation currently notes agriculture as amongthe excepted uses for certain classes of pesticides, if invasive pestscannot be managed on all lands, the threat greatly increases onfarmlands and crops adjoining these areas where pesticides are banned.This effectively turns the latter into incubation factories for pestsand disease, which can easily migrate to crops," said CropLifepresident and CEO, Jay Vroom.
The class of pesticide product targeted by the ban, known as specialtypesticides, is used in and around homes, businesses and public areas.This includes lawns, flowers and trees and for vegetation managementin water, along roadways, railroads and utility rights-of-ways. Theseproducts are essential to protecting public health and safety and tomanaging non-native plants and plant diseases.
"The potential damage of insect and weed infestations is much morethan ’cosmetic’," said Allan James, president of RISE. "Without themeans to effectively control harmful pests, there exists a very realpossibility for harm to children and pets from stinging insects and tomotorists and highway workers from unmanaged brush and invasiveplants."
Emphasizing the strides made by the U.S. and Canada, along withMexico, under the NAFTA trade agreement, toward harmonizing andimproving pesticide regulation on the basis of science, CLA and RISEstrongly encourage withdrawal of the proposed regulation andconsideration of an alternative, fact-based approach lest NAFTAprogress be set back.-xxx-Established in 1933, CropLife America (www.croplifeamerica.org)represents the developers, manufacturers, formulators and distributorsof plant science solutions for agriculture and pest management in theUnited States. CropLife America’s member companies produce, sell anddistribute virtually all the crop protection and biotechnologyproducts used by American farmers.
http://www.croplifeamerica.org/viewer.asp?pageid=297
==============================
Press Release
For Immediate Release:Tuesday, December 02, 2008
Contact: Susan HelmickOffice: (202) 872-3884shelmick@croplifeamerica.org
CLA CEO COMMENDS U.S., CANADIAN PARTNERSHIP IN REMARKS TO CROPLIFECANADA BOARD AT ASSOCIATION'S ANNUAL MEETING
Ottawa, Canada — In a speech given to the Board of CropLife Canadatoday at the Canadian association’s annual meeting, themed “InnovationTogether from the Ground Up,” CropLife America (CLA) President and CEOJay Vroom, thanked his North American colleagues for the partnershipbetween the associations for the crop sciences industry in the US andCanada. Vroom remarked that science-based, transparent and predictableregulation is the foundation for a climate that inspires and enablesinnovation and that in working together across the US-Canadian bordercreates a stable regulatory environment that leads the world increativity and innovation.
“Science-led technology to advance crop production is the answer tothe world’s demand for food, renewable fiber and fuel and here on theNorth American continent we’ve led the innovation, development, andimplementation of those essential technologies,” said Vroom. “For theessential combination of crop protection chemicals and biotechnology,we are at the epicenter for the planet.”
Noting that North American pesticide harmonization work began in the1980s before the enactment of the NAFTA trade agreement and sinceadvanced by the Mexican pesticide trade association AMIFAC with theinception of NATFA, Vroom underlined the outstanding example set bythe three countries for global regulatory harmonization and continuedprogress benefiting not only industry and farm customers but alsoconsumers.
“Our harmonization work allows governments to put their regulatoryresources to the best possible use, reduces cost and time burden toour industry, and adds to consumer confidence in the safety andsecurity of our food supply,” stated Vroom.
Vroom went on to commend CropLife Canada for its leadership in croptechnology stewardship. “From pesticide container recycling towarehouse inspection and certification, we’ve benefitted in the USAfrom your leadership on the stewardship front. We’ve also innovatedtogether in the pursuit of stewardship, and our collaboration hasbrought much success in these areas.”
In closing his remarks, Vroom acknowledged that politics will alwayspresent challenges to a science-based regulatory system and that boththe U.S. and Canada have similar political challenges with regard tothe regulation of urban-use products.
“We must continue to develop best arguments to push back on thesechallenges and in the realm of political affairs we have and cancontinue to assist each other,” Vroom concluded.-xxx-Established in 1933, CropLife America (www.croplifeamerica.org)represents the developers, manufacturers, formulators and distributorsof plant science solutions for agriculture and pest management in theUnited States. CropLife America’s member companies produce, sell anddistribute virtually all the crop protection and biotechnologyproducts used by American farmers.
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St. John's Daily Spray Advisory

My Past Articles

More enforcement needed for pesticide spray regulations
The Western Star (Corner Brook) - Final - 10-01-2002 - 413 words
Karen Griffin - Judie Squires says someone needs to patrol the companies that spray residential areas for pesticides because she's observed nine violations of the Environmental Protection Act in her Paradise neighborhood alone


Spray woes: Province falling down on monitoring pesticides
The Telegram (St. John's) - Final - 10-01-2002 - 253 words
Judie Squires - environment to become poisoned? A temporary ban on all residential pesticides has to be put into place, to protect us, our wildlife and our environment as a whole. Judie Squires Paradise


Government lax on cosmetic pesticide regulation: advocate
The Telegram (St. John's) - 08-28-2004 - 613 words
Stokes Sullivan, Deana - Despite increased awareness about adverse health effects from pesticides, Judie Squires, a member of the Pesticide Working Group of Newfoundland and Labrador, isn't optimistic the province will ban cosmetic use


Woman doesn't expect cosmetic pesticide ban any time soon
The Western Star (Corner Brook) - 08-30-2004 - 712 words
Stokes Sullivan, Deana - Despite increased awareness about adverse health effects from pesticides, Judie Squires, a member of the Pesticide Working Group of Newfoundland and Labrador, isn't optimistic that the province will ban the


Province lagging behind in pesticide control
The Telegram (St. John's) - 09-04-2005 - 496 words
Squires, Judie - it to do is to prohibit the cosmetic use of synthetic pesticides altogether in order to protect our citizens and the environment. Judie Squires writes from Portugal Cove-St. Philip's


The two sides to pesticide use
The Telegram (St. John's) - 07-16-2006 - 781 words
Judie Squires - health of your families. When Canada's most respected health authorities tell us pesticides threaten our health, we should all be listening. Judie Squires writes from Portugal Cove-St. Philip's


Inquiry implicates BTk
The Telegram (St. John's) - 06-24-2006 - 353 words
DEANA STOKES SULLIVAN - of trees. The live spores can be inhaled by humans and animals exposed to BT. Judie Squires, secretary of the Northeast Avalon Group of the Sierra Club, says despite claims that


Delayed pesticide laws 'disappointing'
The Telegram (St. John's) - 06-24-2006 - 833 words
DEANA STOKES SULLIVAN - at the end of this year. These products will only be sold to certified dealers. Judie Squires, secretary of the newly formed Northeast Avalon Group of the Sierra Club, isn't


Above Articles available through Trancontinental Newsnet

Time for provincial lawn pesticide regulation
The Telegram (St. John's) - 03-14-2009 - 419 words
pesticides. Please join me in lobbying our province for a pesticide ban Judie Squires Portugal Cove...

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