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Farmworkers ask EPA for protection from pesticides

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posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:30 PM

State farmworker advocates are calling on the EPA to expand federal labor protection laws to agricultural laborers — arguing that pesticide poisoning is hampering the health of workers.

The issue of pesticide poisoning has roiled South Florida in recent years. In late 2002 and early 2003, within six weeks of each other, three children were born with serious birth defects in the farm town of Immokalee.

The Palm Beach Post reported that the parents said they had been exposed to freshly sprayed pesticides. Ag-Mart, a Plant City company that employed the parents, eventually settled out of court with parents whose child was born with no limbs. Experts said the sealed settlement was likely for millions of dollars.

Many birth defects are caused by the use of pesticides and this has been covered up for way too long.

I sure hope the EPA pays attention to this and takes their concerns seriously. I also hope this brings more attention to how dangerous Monsanto is. Everyone needs to be up in arms about this and see that stricter provisions are put into place.

posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:49 PM
Maybe the EPA can put a stop to pesticide use on farms after all.

This article here states that they're penalizing violators of the Clean Water Act:

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced that it had issued Consent Agreements and Final Orders against 25 entities throughout the Southeast for violations of the Clean Water Act. Three Florida wastewater utilities were also penalized, for improperly disposing of sewage sludge.

As part of the settlements, the responsible parties have agreed to pay $184,317 in civil penalties, and spend an additional $284,791 to come into compliance.

Ten entities were cited for alleged stormwater-related violations of the Clean Water Act, which are a leading cause of impairment to the nearly 40 percent of water bodies nationwide which are not currently meeting water quality standards.

In all reality, pesticides and the Clean Water Act should go hand in hand since pesticides are getting washed into our waterways and ground water.

Maybe we'll be seeing some real change soon. It would be nice to see the EPA make companies (and Monsanto) shake in their boots the same way OSHA does.
edit on 7-12-2011 by Afterthought because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 10:02 AM
Here's some more important news, which makes it seem as though the EPA my just be stunted by the government for their efforts to keep people healthy.

The House on Thursday approved legislation Republicans said was aimed at ensuring the EPA cannot regulate so-called "farm dust."

I'm sure farm dust contains a whole lot of nasty pesticides that easily breathed into the body and not easily expelled. Just wonderful! Nice to see the government doesn't give a crap.

Looks like they won't be able to touch this issue for a entire year -- when we have a new president. Hopefully, whomever it is, will understand the importance of this issue. Maybe if pesticide use was severaly restricted, farm dust wouldn't be such an issue.

"Despite Administrator Jackson's statement, there is nothing currently on the books preventing the EPA from adopting a stricter regulation," Rep. Daniel Webster (R-Fla.) said. "This legislation provides iron-clad certainty to farmers, ranchers, small business owners that farm dust would stay off the EPA's to-do list for at least another year."

So, if your concerned about your health and those who are working on farms, you're mad.

"This session of Congress has felt to many of us like a trip into Alice's Wonderland," Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) said during closing debate. "While our nation struggles with a devastating economy, we do nothing about jobs or getting Americans back to work. Instead, we repeatedly fall down the rabbit hole of extreme legislation, and now with this [bill] … it seems that we're even having tea with the Cheshire cat.

"To paraphrase our friend the Cheshire Cat, 'We're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad. You must be mad, or you wouldn't have come here.' … [The bill] is a mad solution to an imaginary problem," she added.

The article goes on to explain:

Democrats also charged that the bill could be used to help industries other than farming avoid federal pollution regulations.

"It is not really about farms at all," House Energy and Commerce Committee ranking member Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) said. "It's real effect is to exempt industrial mining operations and other large industries from regulation under the Clean Air Act, and it threatens to overturn the particulate pollution standards that protect families in both rural and urban communities."

Waxman said the bill would ban regulations related to nuisance dust, but defines "nuisance dust" in a way that could exempt not just farmers, but coal mining operations and cement plants from new particulate-matter rules. He also said Republicans rejected amendments aimed at ensuring that the bill only blocks potential new rules on dust related to farms.

Then, lastly.

House passage sends the bill to a Senate that is unlikely to take it up at all. The Obama administration has already said it would veto the bill.

Lots of arguments over this, so we'll just have to wait and see what goes down.

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