2013 Round River Rendezvous July 1-8th
- #fearlessummer action calendar wearefearlesssummer.tumblr.com/calendar 2 weeks ago
- N.C. State planning to sell 80,000-acre Hofmann Forest wp.me/puoo0-xe Home to bears, otters, and others 2 weeks ago
- RT @BiomassMonitor: Report: "Unintended Consequences" from #biomass boom: energyjustice.net/content/report… #biomess @earthisland @forestethics @RAN @… 2 weeks ago
- Who Protects Farm Animals?
- New Laws Would Make Environmental Protest “Terrorism”
- Let’s Make Tennessee’s Veto the Beginning of the End for #AgGag
- Tennessee Backlash Against “Ag-Gag” Law: “Maybe the cicadas will eat them.”
- Industry Tries to Hide “Ag-Gag” Efforts, Turns Away Journalists From #AAA13 Conference
From May 26-June 1, industry leaders, tree geneticists and researchers will meet in Asheville, NC for the Tree Biotechnology 2013 Conference. The conference will discuss current and future applications of GE trees. These include large-scale plantations of GE eucalyptus trees in the southern United States, from South Carolina to Texas. Continue reading
They hurl sticks, stones and gasoline bombs. They have spent brutal winter months fortifying muddy encampments. And now they're ready to ramp up their fight against the prime minister and his pet project — a massive new airport in western France.
An unlikely alliance of anarchists and beret-wearing farmers is creating a headache for President Francois Hollande's beleaguered government by mounting an escalating Occupy Wall Street-style battle that has delayed construction on the ambitious airport near the city of Nantes for months.
Young residents of Molokai, Hawaii, protest GMOs as part of a month-long series of actions against biotech chemical companies. (WNV/Imani Altemus-Williams)
At 9 am on an overcast morning in paradise, hundreds of protesters gathered in traditional Hawaiian chant and prayer. Upon hearing the sound of the conch shell, known here as Pū, the protesters followed a group of women towards Monsanto’s grounds.
“A’ole GMO,” cried the mothers as they marched alongside Monsanto’s cornfields, located only feet from their homes on Molokai, one of the smallest of Hawaii’s main islands. In a tiny, tropical corner of the Pacific that has warded off tourism and development, Monsanto’s fields are one of only a few corporate entities that separates the bare terrain of the mountains and oceans. Continue reading
Reposted from Facing South
An environmental watchdog group opposed to fracking has called on the North Carolina attorney general to investigate apparent financial conflicts of interest and what it calls a “pattern of political patronage” involving state leaders responsible for overseeing the oil and gas industry.
The complaint sent this week to Attorney General Roy Cooper, a Democrat, names Gov. Pat McCrory (R), members of the state Mining and Energy Commission, and members of the Republican-controlled General Assembly.
“Before North Carolina starts granting permits to the fracking industry, voters have a right to know the truth about who in our leadership stands to gain financially,” said Jorge Aguilar, Food & Water Watch’s Southern regional director. “We also have a right to put public health and the environment ahead of the conflicted interests of a select few who are leading the push to frack North Carolina.”
Last year the North Carolina legislature overrode by one vote former Gov. Beverly Perdue’s (D) veto of a bill to allow fracking. Rep. Becky Carney (D-Mecklenburg) mistakenly voted in favor of the veto override, and the House leadership would not allow her to correct the vote. Since then, the Republican-controlled legislature has begun pushing a proposal to speed up the state’s move to the controversial natural gas drilling process.
Among the apparent conflicts of interest Food & Water Watch cites:
* McCrory spent almost 30 years working for Duke Energy, which besides being an electricity supplier also distributes natural gas. In turn, the company, its political action committee, and employees have given his campaign over $240,000. And as Facing South first reported, McCrory holds at least $10,000 in Duke Energy stock. He also has significant holdings in Spectra, a natural gas pipeline company.
* Three former Duke Energy employees have landed high-level positions in North Carolina state government. They include Sharon Decker, commerce secretary; Neal Alexander, state personnel director; and Tony Almeida, senior economic adviser. Decker holds at least $10,000 in stock in SCANA Corp., a natural gas utility. In addition, McCrory has appointed as his state budget director leading conservative benefactor Art Pope, who holds significant investments in BP, ConocoPhillips, and Exelon — all of which profit from fracking.
* Several appointed members of the N.C. Mining and Energy Commission, which is charged with writing fracking regulations, stand to gain financially if fracking is allowed in the state — including the two appointed to represent conservation interests. They are Ray Covington, whose company helps landowners negotiate drilling leases in exchange for a share of the profit, and George Howard, whose company restores streams and wetlands, including those damaged by fracking. (Howard’s business partner was John Skvarla, who McCrory appointed to head the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources; Skvarla and his business associates contributed $20,000 to McCrory’s campaign.) In addition, commission member Vikram Rao worked for Halliburton, a leading fracker, for over 30 years and maintains stock holdings in that company as well as in BioLargo, a business that handles disposal of fracking wastewater.
* The state legislature is considering a bill that would give Gov. McCrory the power to replace members of state government commissions with his own appointees, including commissions charged with environmental and energy oversight. The lead sponsors of that legislation have received over $102,000 from Duke Energy and its Progress Energy subsidiary.
“The North Carolina Department of Justice should investigate the aforementioned conflicts of interest in regard to the development of fracking regulations in North Carolina,” Aguilar wrote in the letter to Cooper.
Breaking: New Ag-Gag Bill Introduced in North Carolina on Same Day Butterball Worker Pleads Guilty to Cruelty
by Will Potter on April 8, 2013
North Carolina is the latest state to consider a new law targeting whistleblowers, undercover investigators, and journalists who expose factory farms. The legislation was introduced on the same day that a fifth Butterball employee pled guilty to criminal cruelty to animals — charges that wouldn’t be possible without the undercover investigations that bills like this aim to criminalize.
The wave of legislation called “ag-gag” bills has been met with increasingly mainstream media exposure and outrage, such as the excellent front page story in the New York Times this week.
North Carolina’s SB 648, the “Commerce Protection Act,” is a good example of how corporations and industry groups are responding to the media backlash.
The bill doesn’t include any “terrorism” language, as others have in the past, and it doesn’t mention animal agriculture at all.
Don’t be fooled, though. This ag-gag bill shares the same language and provisions as about a dozen others across the country.
SB 648 says: “It is unlawful for any person to willfully make false statements or representations or to fail to disclose requested information as part of an employment application” if the purpose is to “to create or produce a record that reproduces an image or sound occurring within the employer’s facility, including a photographic, video, or audio” or “to capture or remove data, paper, records, or any other documents…”
It goes on to say that “Any recording… shall be turned over to local law enforcement within 24 hours.”
These are the 3 common provisions in ag-gag bills across the country: 1) photography bans, 2) job application / fraud, and 3) mandatory reporting within 24 hours.
It’s transparent that this bill is a direct response to the undercover investigation of Butterball by Mercy for Animals that led to criminal convictions, and ousted a top state government official for fraud. (For a more detailed look at that case, and ag-gag bills nationally, check out my article in Vice).
The fact that this bill emphasizes fale statements over photography isn’t a safeguard for journalists. Remember, North Carolina was also the home of the landmark lawsuit by Food Lion against journalists who exposed unsanitary practices. The basis of that suit? Fale statements on job applications.
And much like Indiana’s sweeping ag-gag bill, this isn’t confined to animal agriculture. All industry is affected. This isn’t just a threat to animal activists, it’s an assault on anyone who exposes corporate abuse, especially workers and whistleblowers.
While clean up continues on the Exxon oil spill in Arkansas, another oil pipeline burst was detected over the weekend – this time in Houston, Texas.
The Shell Oil owned pipeline burst was detected Friday by the US National Response Center and has dumped an estimated 30,000 gallons of oil into a waterway connected to the Gulf of Mexico (as if it needed any more oil dumped into it!).
Katuah EF! is organizing a week of workshops and protests against the 2013 Tree Biotechnology Conference coming to Asheville, NC May 26 - June 1. The conference is an international gathering of scientists and industry executives pushing to replace our native forests with mono-crop plantations of genetically engineered trees. We'll be announcing more details on that soon. In the meantime, tell the USDA NO GE TREES:
Get in touch with Croatan Earth First! if you live in the Triangle or farther East and you want to carpool to these events together, e-mail croatanearthfirst (at) gmail.com
UPDATE (5 Apr): Thanks to some great work by attorney Rachel Meeropol (CCR), the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) blinked and have allowed Daniel McGowan to return to the halfway house. Make no mistake, without media coverage, radical attorney intervention, and the attention from folks on the streets, all over the world, Daniel would still be at MDC and would likely have spent the remainder of his sentence there.
Reposted from RT.com
Published time: April 03, 2013 18:26
Workers demolish a decommissioned nuclear reactor during the cleanup operations at the Western hemisphere’s most contaminated nuclear site in Hanford, Washington state (AFP Photo / Mark Ralston)
US residents near the Hanford Nuclear Reservation may be in grave danger: a nuclear safety board found that the underground tanks holding toxic, radioactive waste could explode at any minute, due to a dangerous buildup of hydrogen gas.
After Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) asked the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board (DFNSB) about the risks posed by the nuclear site, board members relayed their concerns about the potential for hydrogen gas buildup within the walls of a tank – particularly those with double walls.
“All the double-shell tanks contain waste that continuously generates some flammable gas,” the board said in a letter received by Wyden on Monday. “This gas will eventually reach flammable conditions if adequate ventilation is not provided.”
The safety board had previously issued a warning about their concerns, which have not yet been addressed. In September, the board sent a letter to the Department of Energy, claiming that there were no adequate safeguards to protect against the buildup of flammable gasses inside Hanford’s waste storage tanks. The letter, which outlines the concerns shared with Sen. Wyden on Monday, was declassified on Tuesday. Continue reading
Indiana lawmakers are considering a bill that would make it illegal to photograph or videotape things like factory farming, clear-cutting forests, mining, and fracking.
You read that correctly. Under Indiana’s SB 0373, anyone who sets foot on corporate property in order to document environmental, animal welfare, and health violations of these industries would face criminal penalties.