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Agriculture

World Food Shortage and the Ethanol Bubble
July 9, 2008 09:21 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

We had the internet bubble and the real estate bubble and now, there is the ethanol bubble. Recently, I ran some numbers on ethanol and to my amazement realized that it is - too use a catch phrase from the environmental world -- not sustainable. Turning food into fuel is just plain silly; and when oil prices come down the ethanol bubble could pop big.

EU Considers Dumping Biofuels While U.S. Continues to Bully Global South to Adopt Gene-Altered Crops
July 8, 2008 10:14 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

European Union energy ministers said at an informal meeting Saturday they had been labouring for 18 months under the false impression that an EU plan to fight global warming included an obligation to develop controversial biofuels. What seems to be a stunning misreading on the part of policymakers in Brussels comes at a time when the image of biofuels has shifted over a matter of a months from climate saviour to climate pariah.

China Olympic city battles "invading" algae
July 7, 2008 09:10 AM - Reuters

In China's Olympic co-host city Qingdao, sea breezes that usually bring relief from baking summer temperatures now bring a cloying stench from a massive algae bloom that locals fear will harm the city's bucolic image during the Games. "If we don't clean this up, we're done for," said local businessman Zhang Longfei, pointing at a blanket of green weed stretching far out to sea at Qingdao's No. 3 Bathing Beach.

Where's the global food crisis taking us?
July 3, 2008 10:07 AM - Reuters

In five years' time, we could be living in a world where millions are dying in famines with no food aid to hand, regular storms and droughts wipe out acres of crops, and skyrocketing food prices have created global political panic, food experts say.

Some 1.5 bln people may starve due to land erosion
July 2, 2008 10:19 AM - Reuters

Rising land degradation reduces crop yields and may threaten food security of about a quarter of the world' population, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said on Wednesday.

Wal-Mart to source more fruits and veggies locally

Wal-Mart Stores Inc is sourcing more produce sold in its U.S. supercenters and Neighborhood Market stores from local farmers as it tries to offset the soaring transportation costs that are driving up food prices.

Ciao FAO: Another "Failure as Usual" Food Summit
June 27, 2008 09:33 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

Contrary to the opinion of many, June's Food Summit actually did something. It signaled the beginning of the end for the multilateral system as we know it. Over the next six months the food emergency - and the international institutions designed to address it - could get worse.

Abandoned farmlands are key to sustainable bioenergy
June 24, 2008 10:29 AM - Carnegie Institution

Stanford, CA—Biofuels can be a sustainable part of the world's energy future, especially if bioenergy agriculture is developed on currently abandoned or degraded agricultural lands, report scientists from the Carnegie Institution and Stanford University.

Iowa: Agricultural Methods Exacerbate Flooding
June 24, 2008 09:28 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

In all of our reading about the floods and rebuilding Iowa, there is no mention of the role of agriculture in these recent events. Out of this catastrophe needs to come some understanding that industrial agriculture has caused many of the issues that happen downriver from cultivated land. A deterioration of good conservation and resource-management practices over the last 50 years has helped make these "rain events" even more catastrophic.

The Great Pesticide Debate
June 23, 2008 09:03 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

It's a battle that's been raging in this country for more than 15 years, with skirmishes fought in town council rooms, the House of Commons, the Supreme Court of Canada and on the letters pages of this newspaper. But the use of pesticides for purely esthetic purposes -- such as killing dandelions -- has likely never been a hotter topic than it is today.

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