(Beyond Pesticides, August 6, 2009) American Bird Conservancy has petitioned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ban the import of crops containing any residues of 13 pesticides that are banned or restricted for use in the United States. These pesticides are highly toxic to birds, but are commonly used on crops throughout Latin America where many species of U.S. migratory birds spend the winter months. In addition to the environmental risks to birds, several of these chemicals also pose a risk to agricultural workers. “Allowing residues of these hazardous pesticides on imported food gives tacit U.S. approval to foreign countries to use chemicals that are known to be deadly to U.S. migratory birds,” said Dr. Michael Fry, American Bird Conservancy’s Director of Conservation Advocacy. “EPA has an obligation under Executive Order 13186, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and the Endangered Species Act to ensure that migratory birds are not harmed.” Many Latin American countries that currently use these pesticides export coffee, bananas, citrus crops, and other fruits and vegetables to the United States. Agricultural areas — in particular shade coffee farms — provide valuable habitat for migratory birds, and so pesticide use in these areas can pose a significant […]
(Beyond Pesticides, march 30, 2009) The burning of grass seed fields on more than 38,000 acres in Oregon has been a threat to public health for decades.