Category: Biodiversity

Ban GMOs Now – Health & Environmental Hazards Especially in the Light of the New Genetics

The most exhaustive, and up-to-date summary of the dangers of GM agriculture for 2013. GM agriculture is a recipe for disaster, as this report will make clear. It is also standing in the way of the shift to sustainable agriculture already taking place in local communities all over the world that can truly enable people to feed themselves in times of climate change. Order your copy now. (Executive Summary here, […]

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Farmed Fish Production Overtakes Beef

Janet Larsen and J. Matthew Roney, Earth Policy Institute The world quietly reached a milestone in the evolution of the human diet in 2011. For the first time in modern history, world farmed fish production topped beef production. The gap widened in 2012, with output from fish farming—also called aquaculture—reaching a record 66 million tons, compared with production of beef at 63 million tons. And 2013 may well be the […]

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Agricultural Hegemony

Why do farmers’ groups indulge in such ridiculous scaremongering about the restoration of the natural world? by George Monbiot The dam is beginning to crack, faster than I would have believed possible. Britain, one of the world’s most zoophobic nations, is at last considering the return of some of its extinct and charismatic mammal species. While wolves, lynx, bears, bison, moose, boar and beavers have been spreading across the Continent […]

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Living Soil Saves Lives!

A non-profit teaches a soil education program to combat the farmer suicide epidemic in rural India. By Tejal Heblekar, and edited by Eileen Mello A few kilometers from the Bay of Bengal in the Indian state of Orissa, rural farmers have gathered around a microscope to see what lies hidden in the ground. The Hummingbird Project, an American based non-profit organization, has equipped a soil laboratory with a microscope and […]

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What’s Missing from this Picture?

Somehow almost all of us have missed the real story behind the disappearance of our wildlife. by George Monbiot Even before you start reading the devastating State of Nature report, you get an inkling of where the problem lies. It’s illustrated in the opening pages with two dramatic photographs of upland Britain. They are supposed to represent the natural glories we’re losing. In neither of them (with the exception of […]

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Genetically Modified Crops and Hunger – Another Look at the Evidence

Genetically modified crops are hailed by their proponents as the basis for a “new green revolution”, and as the key solution to feeding the world in the face of population growth and the exhaustion of new sources of agricultural land. There is a massive volume of research and research literature around genetically modified crops, but how much of it is really of value in assessing this often heard hypothesis about […]

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A Manifesto for Rewilding the World

A mass restoration of ecosystems offers us hope where there was little hope before. by George Monbiot Until modern humans arrived, every continent except Antarctica possessed a megafauna. In the Americas, alongside mastodons, mammoths, four-tusked and spiral-tusked elephants, there was a beaver the size of a black bear: eight feet from nose to tail(1). There were giant bison weighing two tonnes, which carried horns seven feet across(2). The short-faced bear […]

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The Never-Spotted Leopard

Are repeated sightings of non-existent big cats evidence of a yearning for a wilder life? An extract from Feral: searching for enchantment on the frontiers of rewilding, by George Monbiot, published in the Guardian, 22nd May 2013. by George Monbiot The setting was unimprovable. Across the fields, Maiden Castle, a turretted fortress of living rock, clawed at the sky. Beyond it was the village of Wolf’s Castle – Casblaidd – […]

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Bee All or End All

Photo © Craig Mackintosh It’s score one for the bees. Last week the European Union banned neonicotinoid pesticides for a two-year period beginning early next year. Key findings cited evidence of the role neonics play in destroying bee populations. The ban is specifically for flowering crops as neonics penetrate plants from treated seed through to affecting flower nectar and pollen, which bees and other non-target insects feed on. Bees in […]

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The Providential Principle

Amazingly, the UK government has not defined the precautionary principle and appears to have no idea what it is. by George Monbiot Click for larger view Here’s something remarkable I stumbled across while researching my column on Monday, but did not have room to include. I hope you’ll agree that it is worth sharing. I was trying to understand the context for the new chief scientist’s cavalier treatment of scientific […]

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The Counter-Enlightenment

How government science advisers misrepresent science. by George Monbiot What happens to people when they become government science advisers? Are their children taken hostage? Is a dossier of compromising photographs kept, ready to send to the Sun if they step out of line?

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Tackling “Monoculture of the Mind”

Billionaires forgo iron-rich crops in push for GM bananas in India Nature has given us a cornucopia of biodiversity rich in nutrients. Malnutrition and nutrient deficiency result from destroying biodiversity. The Green Revolution has spread monocultures of chemical rice and wheat, driving out biodiversity from our farms and diets. And what survived as spontaneous crops — like amaranth greens (chaulai) and chenopodium (bathua) that are rich in iron — were […]

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