Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Make sure base ends spraying, too

Tue, Feb 3, 2009
New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal
Make sure base ends spraying, too
Re- Pesticide opponents confident ban coming soon.
The Liberal government of New Brunswick says that it now knows thatits citizens want a "full ban" on the use of cosmetic pesticides inresidential areas, and the option of giving more power to municipalgovernments to make their own pesticide bylaws.
It will be worth noting if that same Liberal government will finallymake a comment on the spraying of herbicides at CFB Gagetown.
So far this and the previous provincial government have beennoticeably silent about the spraying of 1.3 million litres and 1million kgs of dry deadly chemicals sprayed at CFB Gagetown from 1956to 1984.
Of course the provincial politicians are going to say that since CFBGagetown is on federal land any such provincial ban will not apply tothe base. Perhaps the provincial politicians can reveal how much theNew Brunswick taxpayers pay in health-care costs due to the sprayingsat CFB Gagetown?
ART CONNOLLYAgent Orange Alert, London
Monday, February 02, 2009
The Jamestown Sun
Pesticide board wants regulations
The North Dakota Pesticide Control Board has asked the Legislature toensure that only properly trained people can apply especially riskypesticides.
Testifying Friday be-fore the Senate Agriculture Committee in supportof Senate Bill 2248, Agriculture Commissioner Roger Johnson, whochairs the Pesticide Control Board, said these chemicals areclassified as “Restricted Use Pesticides” because they pose specialrisk to human health or the environment. The bill, introduced by Sen.Jerry Klein, R-Fessenden, also includes a number of provisions aimedat clarifying and simplifying the state’s pesticide law.
“RUPs include such things as aluminum phosphide and paraquat that arehighly toxic to people; pesticides such as picloram and atrazine thathave high potential to leach into groundwater, and substances likeinsecticides that are highly toxic to fish and other aquatic species,”Johnson said.
Johnson said the current law contains a loophole, allowing a person tomake a private application of an RUP without being certified.
“The law requires that only certified dealers can sell RUPs . . . andthat only certified persons can buy RUPs,” he said. “Both of theseprovisions are meant to control the distribution of these products andkeep them out of the hands of untrained users. The greatest risk,however, is in the use of these pesticides. If we do not keep them inthe hands of certified applicators, we defeat the entire purpose ofcertification.”
Johnson said the new language makes it clear that only certifiedapplicators may purchase or use an RUP, regardless of whether it isfor private or commercial use. He also said the change in the law willnot affect most producers.
“RUPs represent less than five percent of the registered pesticides inNorth Dakota, and they are not as commonly used as some may believe,”he said. “Of the top 30 pesticides used in North Dakota on a per-acrebasis, only one is a RUP.”
He also pointed out that obtaining private certification is notdifficult, requiring only four hours of training every three years anda $25 fee.
In addition to Johnson, the Pesticide Control Board includes DuaneHauck, director of North Dakota State University Extension Service,and Ken Grafton, director of the North Dakota State UniversityExperiment Station.
February 3, 2009
Dow Chemical Has $1.55 Billion Loss on Weak Demand (Update2)
By Jack Kaskey
Feb. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Dow Chemical Co., the largest U.S. chemicalmaker, had a $1.55 billion loss in the fourth quarter, trailinganalysts’ expectations for a profit, as the economic recession slasheddemand for plastics and industrial products.
The net loss of $1.68 a share compares with net income of $472million, or 49 cents a share, a year earlier, Midland, Michigan-basedDow Chemical said today in a statement. Excluding certain items, thecompany had a loss of 62 cents a share. The average estimate of 11analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was for profit of 8 cents. Salesdropped 23 percent to $10.9 billion.
Chief Executive Officer Andrew Liveris said the company has been hurtby a “global economic crisis” and is planning on the recession lastingthroughout 2009. Sales volumes and prices plunged for basic plasticsand chemicals, prompting Dow to cut factory operating rates to thelowest in more than 25 years.
“It’s a very nasty set of results,” said Hassan Ahmed, a New York-based analyst at HSBC Securities. “Everyone says January has beentracking December, so you can make a valid case that the first quartercould be far worse than the fourth quarter.” He rates the shares“overweight.”
Dow Chemical fell 74 cents, or 6.7 percent, to $10.31 as of 6:47 a.m.in trading before the official opening of the New York Stock Exchange.
Fourth-quarter net income included $1.06 a share in charges for itemsincluding restructuring, goodwill impairment and expenses related tothe company’s $15.4 billion takeover of Rohm & Haas Co. and a canceledpetrochemicals venture with Kuwait. Dow didn’t provide an update onthe status of the merger, which is now the subject of a court case inDelaware.
Sales Volumes
The revenue decline included a 17 percent drop in sales volumes and a6 percent drop in global prices, Dow said. Demand declined in allsegments and in all regions. Prices dropped 15 percent in the basic-plastics unit and 6 percent in basic chemicals.
Dow ran its plants at 44 percent of capacity in December, the lowestever, and at 64 percent for the full quarter.
“With a global economic crisis unfolding during the quarter, weresponded with speed and urgency to get ahead of the demanddestruction that continued to accelerate as we approached the end ofthe year,” Liveris said in the statement.
Dow in December said it is eliminating about 5,000 jobs, or 11 percentof the global workforce, permanently closing 20 facilities and idling180 plants. Dow’s contractor workforce is being cut by 6,000 globally.
U.S. Economy
The U.S. economy, the world’s largest, may contract at a 5.5 percentannual pace this quarter after declining at a 3.8 percent rate in thelast three months of 2008, according to a forecast by economists atMorgan Stanley in New York. Last quarter’s drop was the biggest since1982.
The U.S., Japan and Europe are simultaneously in a recession for thefirst time since World War II. The International Monetary Fund lastweek projected global growth this year at 0.5 percent and said lossesfrom the credit crisis will total $2.2 trillion.
Costs for petroleum-derived raw materials and energy fell 23 percentfrom the year-earlier quarter, the company said. Dow uses oil andnatural gas to power factories and as raw materials.
Dow, founded in 1897, makes 3,200 products, including plastics,Styrofoam insulation, pesticides and chlorine, at more than 150production sites in 37 countries.
Agriculture Profit
The agriculture unit, which makes seeds and pesticides, reportedprofit of $34 million compared with a $38 million loss a year earlier.Profit rose 40 percent in the performance- chemicals units amid pricegains and increased demand for some products, such as water-treatmentmembranes.
The basic-plastics segment had a $315 million loss compared withprofit of $394 million a year earlier because of tumbling demand andprices for products such as polyethylene plastic, used in bags andpackaging. Basic chemicals had a $237 million loss compared withprofit of $309 million a year earlier, largely because of a 33 percentdrop in sales volumes.
The performance-plastics segment lost $479 million, compared withprofit of $158 million a year earlier, because of weak demand,including for resins used in industrial coatings and plastic car partsand polyurethane foams used in cushions and bedding.
Rohm & Haas sued Dow last week in Delaware Chancery Court to force thecompletion of the transaction, which was supposed to close on Jan. 27.Judge William B. Chandler III set the first day of trial for March 9in Georgetown, Delaware.
Lending Terms
Dow, still committed to the merger, is seeking new terms fromCitigroup Inc. and other lenders that have committed $13 billion inbridge financing for the acquisition, Liveris said last week. Liverishad planned to finance the deal with the loan and $4 billion in equityinvestments by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and the KuwaitInvestment Authority.
Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s cut Dow’s ratings on Dec. 29, after theKuwait deal failed. S&P reduced Dow’s rating to BBB, two grades abovejunk, from A-. Moody’s cut Dow’s rating from A3 to Baa1, three levelsabove junk.
Kuwait’s Petrochemical Industries Co. was to pay $7.5 billion for a 50percent stake in Dow’s basic-plastics unit, the world’s largestproducer of polyethylene. The resulting joint venture, known as K-DowPetrochemicals, would have paid each partner $1.5 billion, boostingDow’s proceeds to $9 billion.
To contact the reporter on this story: Jack Kaskey in New York atjkaskey@bloomberg.net.
Feb 2, 2009
Suzuki is wrong about huntingThere are more deer in North America than ever, more elk, and Bighornsheep are coming back
Re: Hunting in Parks at odds with Conservation by Dr. David Suzuki andFaisal Moola:
Suzuki's headline says "Hunting in parks at odds with conservation."I'm writing this letter to say this is highly unfair and untrue.
He says "Our current hunting practices reduce population numbers." NotSo!
In North America now, there are more deer than ever, more geese, morewild turkeys, more elk in the western states and provinces, andBighorn sheep are coming back.
He states that hunting affects the size of the animals. Also untrue.Every year deer are making it into the record books.
Actually deer are smaller in parks such as Rondeau and Pinery thanthey are in the surrounding areas where deer are hunted. Deer in theseparks are undernourished and they have completely eaten the understory of the woods, making it almost impossible for new growth tohappen.
This is an upset of the ecosystem. So in most cases the size of thedeer goes down due to lack of hunting, not the opposite.
Suzuki says unsustainable rates of hunting and fishing can devastatewildlife populations and he mentions the cod and Pacific salmonstocks.
He is right, but market hunting for game has not been allowed for wellover a century and the cod stocks were decimated by Russian andEuropean commercial bottom draggers, not by anglers.
Recreational hunting and angling have never even come close toendangering a species in North America. In fact most hunted and angledspecies are thriving.
He mentions bighorn sheep being affected by hunters. A bighorn ram isonly legal game when its horns are over 3/4 curl. Such an animal isusually well past his breeding prime, his teeth are worn down and heonly has a year or two left to live anyway, so taking him out of thepopulation does no harm.
Actually the population of wild sheep was not drastically reduced byrecreational hunting but by the introduction of domestic sheep, whichcarried diseases like brucellosis to the wild sheep and reduced theirwinter feed supply.
This happened in the late 1800s.
Most hunters are happy killing the first legal deer that gives them anopportunity to do so. We are not all trophy hunters, and actually, bythe time a buck reaches true trophy proportions he is almostcompletely nocturnal and almost un-killable. He has definitely lefthis genes in the population. (By the way David, bucks have antlers,not horns.)
Most of the hunting in Kawartha Signature Site Park, which Suzukidiscusses, is for deer one or two weeks a year by people who have hadcamps in those woods for more than a hundred years.
In the early autumn the odd grouse hunter may wander through but I'venever heard of anyone going up there to hunt groundhogs, crows andgrackles or turtles.
In all my fifty years as a hunter, I have never even heard of anybodygoing out to hunt turtles.
Suzuki paints a picture of hundreds of people killing thousands ofturtles. It ain't so.
In fact Ducks Unlimited (an organization mostly made up of hunters andfinanced mostly by hunters) has saved and restored almost one millionacres of marshland in Ontario alone. Since turtles live in marshesthat has saved thousands of times more turtles than hunting has everdestroyed.
Suzuki states that hunting in that park will open up opportunities tohunt previously protected species such as porcupines, foxes, weasels,raccoons and skunks.
One only has to look at the Ontario Hunting regulations to see this isnot true either. Ontario has seasons for foxes, raccoons, and weasels.Skunks may be hunted all year long. So these species were notpreviously protected.
Suzuki says he is concerned about hunting increasing the humanfootprint.
Hunting has been a tradition in that area for over a hundred years andhas not left a noticeable footprint. What will leave an enormous humanfootprint is making the place into a park -- period.
A couple of weeks ago Dr. Gino Ferri wrote in this newspaper about apristine lake he used to visit by canoe. The government opened up aroad and a parking lot for all Ontarians to enjoy.
The people came in droves and ruined it. Do we really want that inKawartha? The trouble with parks is that we love them to death.
In the National Park up on the Bruce, trails are made with bark chips.Imagine that, the bark chip highway, where a person from Mississaugacan get her nature fix without removing her high heels.
Suzuki talks about footprints in parks. Let us be thankful that onlyone provincial park has a golf course. National parks have too many tomention.
Yes, golf courses, with their irrigation systems, herbicides,pesticides, fertilizer, tree removal and everything else that goesalong with maintaining a monoculture. All so a person who discovershimself bored stiff with nature can amuse himself for $175. Talk abouta footprint. Godzilla couldn't do any worse.
Of course criticizing the Holy Golf would be akin to criticizingmotherhood or the Holy Grail.
Suzuki is right about hunting being at odds with the values of mostOntarians. That is because most Ontarians are city dwellers and havelittle or no knowledge of the outdoors. Most of their values have beenshaped by Walt Disney movies like Bambi or by watching Marlin Perkins(the silver haired faker on Mutual of Omaha.)
I asked a group of young people the other day to name three species ofwoodpeckers indigenous to Ontario. Only one teen could even name one.The answer I got mostly was Woody Woodpecker.
The fact is, most people can't tell a rufous-sided towhee from a sideof fries.
Last fall I joined three professors from Cornell University on anantelope hunt in Montana. One has his PhD in wildlife populationdynamics and one is a doctor of botany. They don't seem to have aproblem with hunting, in fact they live for it.
What steams Suzuki, he says, is that proposed plans are at odds withthe principle of sustainable wildlife.
What really steams me and the hunting community in general is a well-known scientist playing on people's emotions and using innuendo togive the impression that hunters and hunting will have a terrible andlasting effect on that park and its wildlife when he knows better.
Don ScottMeaford
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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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