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Happy Holidays from Beyond Pesticides!

Beyond Pesticides wishes our members and friends a healthy, happy and organic New Year! Beyond Pesticides’ Daily News is taking a holiday break and will return on Monday, January 3, 2010 with restored energy and vision to continue charging ahead.

As we reflect on the successes of the last year and the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead, one thing is clear –your support of Beyond Pesticides is instrumental to what we do. We continue to reaffirm the critical importance of grassroots advocacy in a political climate prone to compromises that adversely affect people and the environment. As a result, our efforts in support of people and communities across the country are a critical factor in advancing the protections that people want and need for their family and community.

This holiday season, consider a donation to Beyond Pesticides in support of our continued work at a very practical level –giving people the tools that are needed to adopt safe land and building management practices, and advocate for a legacy of policy changes in our towns, cities, and nation.

While our job has become more challenging since the last election, we must not lose the momentum that we have developed to shift away from pesticide-dependent and toward healthy and sustainable practices. In the current political climate, Beyond Pesticides will do what it does best –bridge the (i) serious concerns about pesticides’ toxic hazards with the expertise of pest management practitioners who eliminate hazardous pesticide use, and (ii) successful non-toxic strategies with meaningful policy change.

Key to our work is the knowledge that the vast majority of toxic pesticide use on a daily basis is not necessary and can be replaced by a combination of sustainable practices and non-toxic products. Our daily work –and all the tools that we develop to support local action– raises central issues that challenge toxic chemical dependency with science, and intends to be transformational in improving the country’s approach to toxics policy regulation.

We take a very proactive stance, identifying opportunities to bring Beyond Pesticides’ vision to the table, reach out to voice our positions, bring grassroots organizations into the decision making process at all levels, and serve in a leadership capacity to reform the approach of the marketplace and government to toxic chemicals. The tools and campaigns we are asking you to support help local people and organizations to be effective change agents.

Beyond Pesticides is a leader in advancing standards and practices for a sustainable future. Every day we challenge the conventional wisdom that suggests we need toxic pesticides to maintain our quality of life, protect our health, and grow our food.

We need your support to:

Institutionalize practices that effect a reduction in pesticide use. We assist with solutions to everyday pest issues that people confront in their homes, communities, institutions (schools, hospitals, workplaces) and in agriculture. While we cast a broad net in assisting people, we develop models to serve as examples, track data, and develop new tools: Beyond Pesticides’ Eating with a Conscience, Pesticide-Induced Diseases Database, Gateway on Pesticide Hazards and Safe Pest Management, Safety Source for Pest Management, and our standards definition for pest management in Ending Toxic Dependency and in the School Environment Protection Act. We address the pesticide problem and its solution on many levels, including the local, state and federal level, from a science, policy and grassroots perspective. We constantly strive to improve our website as a practical informational tool.

Campaign leading to the adoption of precautionary approach policy. We work at the local, state and national level to put in place policies that improve and offer the broadest possible protections for people and our country. Our goal is at least ten new jurisdictions (town, city, state) in the next year that serve as solid models in achieving policy change, like the statewide parks department policy in New York State and Greenbelt, Maryland’s adoption of an organic public land management policy. Our approach is captured in model national legislation (H.R. 4159, the School Environment Protection Act) that favors alternatives assessment over risk assessments, leading to the rejection of unnecessary pesticide use.

Build the integrity and growth of organic agriculture. We will (i) maximize our opportunity on the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) to lead on regulatory decisions, striving for organic standards that adhere to sustainability goals in compliance with the law’s vision and limitations on allowable substances and practices, (ii) increase consumer trust and support for organic as the solution to toxic pesticide contamination, and (iii) build broader environmental and health community involvement on key issues.

We invite you to visit our new Eating with a Conscience database and share it with family and friends to broaden our message by helping others connect food purchasing decisions with the effect of our choices on the environment and worker protection. Your support will help us launch a new organic action webpage, engage the public in decisions, and help organic food production grow.

Thanks for considering a donation at the end of 2010 with just a few clicks! And, best wishes for a happy and healthy holiday season. See us again on January 3, 2011!



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