Richmond has learned there are trade-offs to banning all pesticide-use in weed abatement activities on city properties.
One year after Richmond City Council installed the ban, sparing the community from exposure to the widely-used herbicide glyphosate, city groundskeepers say they are struggling to keep up with ever-sprouting weeds in public spaces.
Public Works Director Yader presented images at Tuesday’s council meeting of overgrown public right-of-ways no longer controlled by pesticides. The city is also having a difficult time tending to youth sports fields ahead of the summer season, Yader said, adding that at least four additional groundskeepers are needed to make up for what the use of pesticides can accomplish.
And while the groundskeepers don’t have to breathe in potentially cancer-causing chemicals, Yader added, they suffer from back problems from pulling weeds and have to spend more time working amid dangerous traffic.
Despite the hardships, the majority on City Council did not appear intent on reinstating pesticide use. They cite emerging research on glyphosate, such as a finding last year by the World Health Organization (WHO) that the chemical is “probably carcinogenic to humans.” The finding was vehemently disputed by industry leaders. The issue on whether glyphosate causes cancer is currently being debated in Europe, where the European Union must decide whether to continue to extend the approval of its use.
Councilmember Nat Bates believes the city should bring pesticides back, saying the city is beginning to look shabby, which creates a lower quality of life for residents. He added that he doesn’t believe Richmond, which is trying to close an $8 million budget deficit, can afford to pioneer the issue. Richmond is one of only a few jurisdictions in California to have implemented a ban, according to city staff.
Relief eludes Kerala endosulfan victimsA medical survey and financial package promised for the victims still remain on paper
How to Deal with Stupid: Part 1/10 – Defining Stupid
The following is Part 1 of a ten-part blog on governance to be serialised over the holidays. Today our personal decision-making process is strongly influenced by the latest social media applications yet EU and American government policy mechanisms, developed in the last century, have not been adapted to these communications tools. This discrepancy has created opportunities for less-scrupulous activists to abuse the process, converting positions lacking in proper evidence and rationality into victories or disruptions in the regulatory arena. In other words, these campaigners have been able to turn “stupid” into policy. This series: How to Deal with Stupid, essentially a policy pamphlet, will examine how stupid has been able to rise, be used by clever manipulators to achieve legislative success and what can be done to begin to return stupid to its cage. The first step in this process is to define “stupid”.
With the explosion of social media Google-trained experts, activist Mommy-bloggers and health experts with a “Dr.” in front or a “PhD” after their names and on their book covers, there is a wave of badly deduced or mal-sourced information being panhandled around the Internet that can only be considered as the phenomenon of “stupid”.
“Stupid” has recently been overused in on-line discussions as synonymous with the expression: “I disagree with you!” It has become very hard to dispute someone without resorting to name-calling (Godwin’s law). As the taboo of such an insult diminishes, “stupid” needs to be redefined within the context of a communications medium that has cut off the ability to dialogue and engage with those who have other opinions. In a few short years, the misuse of the once touted revolution in the digitalisation of knowledge has brought us crashing into what historians will likely look back on as theAge of Stupid.
Stupid has become ubiquitous. Ignoring its rapid rise as merely a limited, social-media driven event is not advisable. Make no mistake, stupid can be very clever and will take advantage of any opportunities that arise when innocent people adapt slowly to emerging communications tools.
((NaturalNews) In the late 1970s and early 1980s, over 50 American women were killed by their tampons. Although the FDA and the feminine hygiene industry have gone to tremendous lengths to try to memory hole this true history (and label it just a “rumor”), tampons made from certain non-natural fibers were found to harbor deadly bacteria and release a sufficient quantity of chemicals to kill or injure over a thousand women.
The worst offenders were Procter and Gamble’s ultra-absorbent Rely tampons. According to the book Soap Opera: The Inside Story of Procter and Gamble, the company dismissed consumer complaints about the tampons for years. A 1975 company memo disclosed that Rely tampons contained known cancer-causing agents and that the product altered the natural organisms found in the vagina. Rely tampons were taken off the shelves in 1980, but many women claim they left a legacy of hysterectomies and loss of fertility.
Among health-conscious women, the toxicity of mainstream tampons has long been an issue of concern. “Just as I say heck no to Cottonseed oil, it is for the same reason I say heck no to sticking toxic cotton up into my nethers,” writes Meghan Telpner. “Did ya know that 84 million pounds of pesticides are sprayed on 14.4 million acres of conventional cotton grown each year in the US.”