Agriculture

Southern California Beetle Killing Oaks
May 2, 2009 08:22 AM - ScienceDaily

U.S. Forest Service scientists have completed a study on a beetle that was first detected in California in 2004, but has now attacked 67 percent of the oak trees in an area 30 miles east of San Diego.

Feds Announce $615.8 Million for Rural Water Projects
April 29, 2009 10:12 AM - USDA

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the selection of more than $615.8 million in water and environmental projects that are being funded immediately with federal funds provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Pandemic Fears as Flu Kills 68
April 27, 2009 06:11 AM - David Randall The Indepedent - UK

A swine flu virus outbreak that has rapidly claimed up to 68 lives in Mexico, and infected people in the US, was last night declared a "public health emergency of international concern". The decision, made by the World Health Organisation (WHO), means that countries are now being asked to step up surveillance for any cases.

Ontario to enact toughest pesticide ban in Canada

Ontario will enact the toughest rules in Canada when its pesticide ban takes effect today, a move that could land the province in the legal crosshairs of an international trade dispute.

Rise in dust storms spurs environmental fears
April 23, 2009 06:57 AM - MSNBC from Washington Post

An increasing amount of airborne dust is blanketing the West, affecting how fast the snowpack melts, when local plants bloom and what quality of air residents are breathing. The dust storms are a harbinger of a broader phenomenon, researchers say, as global warming translates into less precipitation and a population boom intensifies the activities that are disturbing the dust in the first place.

G8 Agriculture Ministers Conclude Summit on Food Stability
April 21, 2009 02:57 PM - Sabina Castelfranco, Voice of America

Agriculture ministers from the major industrialized nations called on Monday for increased agriculture production as a way to combat world hunger. At the end of a 3-day meeting in northern Italy, G-8 ministers also took a first step toward fighting speculators who have helped push up the price of basic foods, sparking riots in several poor countries.

Our "Foodprint:" It's Not Just the Miles
April 21, 2009 11:05 AM - , Worldwatch Institute

Our environmental "foodprint" is determined not just by how far food travels, but also by what we eat and how it was produced, according to the latest issue of World Watch magazine. In this first installment of a two-part series on the potential impacts of greater food localization, Sarah DeWeerdt explains that if what you eat matters as much as how far it travels, then red meat and dairy production remain agriculture's overwhelming "hotspots."

Pesticide exposure found to increase risk of Parkinson's disease

In a new epidemiological study of Central Valley residents who have been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, researchers found that years of exposure to the combination of these two pesticides increased the risk of Parkinson's by 75 percent. Further, for people 60 years old or younger diagnosed with Parkinson's, earlier exposure had increased their risk for the disease by as much as four- to six-fold.

Long-term solutions needed to feed the world's poor
April 17, 2009 08:23 AM - David Dickson, SciDevNet

More agricultural research funding and a farmer-centred approach to boosting food production are needed to prevent future food emergencies.

New study warns damage to forests from climate change could cost the planet its major keeper of greenhouse gases
April 17, 2009 06:59 AM - The Collaborative Partnership on Forests

The critical role of forests as massive "sinks" for absorbing greenhouse gases is "at risk of being lost entirely" to climate change-induced environmental stresses that threaten to damage and even decimate forests worldwide, according to a new report released today. The report will be formally presented at the next session of the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF) taking place 20 April-1 May 2009 at the UN Headquarters in New York City.

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