Now that glyphosate has been denounced by the World Health Organization, there’s a new spray in town from our friendly neighborhood purveyor of poison, Monsanto. It hasn’t yet been approved, but given the history of blatant collusion between Monsanto and the government, there’s little doubt that it will be.
But there’s a bit of a catch: even though dicamba, the newest toxic ingredient in the Monsanto line-up, hasn’t actually been approved for this use by the EPA, it is already being widely used on genetically modified crops…And the illegal spray is killing the crops of neighboring farmers.
Farmers in 10 states have now complained that dicamba is hurting their crops, according to a notice issued last week by the Environmental Protection Agency. The reported damage from dicamba has spread from two to 10 states in a matter of weeks, and now includes Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Tennessee and Texas.
The EPA has done very little in response to the complaints, and some states are beginning to take matters into their own hands to protect their farmers and prevent further crop loss…
Dicamba easily drifts in the air after it’s sprayed, and damages crops when it lands on neighboring fields. More than 100 Missouri farmers have reported damage to their peaches, tomatoes, cantaloupes, watermelons, rice, cotton, peas, peanuts, alfalfa and soybeans.
In neighboring Arkansas, frustration over dicamba drift has led the state’s Pesticide Committee to propose prohibiting the spraying of certain dicamba formulations during the growing season, from mid-April to mid-September. It has also proposed expanding mandatory buffer zones andincreasing fines for violations.
In other states, experts are urging farmers to hire lawyers if they think drift has affected their crops.
When states and lawyers are forced to take action to protect farmers from pesticides, it’s clear that the federal pesticide law is broken.
Meanwhile, the EPA issued an advisory notice last week to remind farmers that dicamba has not been approved for use on new GMO cotton and soybeans. The agency asserted that farmers must carefully follow the instructions on pesticide labels. But a recent survey by University of Missouri scientists found that 57 percent of farmers don’t read pesticides labels before spraying their fields.
Dicamba, like its predecessor glyphosate, is likely to be carcinogenic. There are serious effects on wildlife, groundwater, and neighboring fields because of dicamba’s strong propensity to drift. (This PDF will give you the down-and-dirty info about dicamba.)
Monsanto invested greatly in dicamba with a $975 million expansion of the facility in Luling, Louisiana where it is produced. They also launched Roundup Ready Xtend soybean and cotton seeds, which have been engineered to withstand dousings of either dicamba or glyphosate. They released the seeds this spring, even though the EPA had not approved the use of dicamba on them. Farmers planted the seeds and began using dicamba anyway. As a result, more than 42,000 acres of crops in nearby fields are dying. Crops affected are peaches, tomatoes, cantaloupes, watermelons, rice, peas, peanuts, alfalfa, cotton, and soybeans.
As always, Monsanto is blithely unconcerned, certain that their friends at the EPA will approve their newest toxin soon. The company appears baffled that farmers are using dicamba incorrectly (and illegally) on their seeds. Meanwhile, as always, the EPA doesn’t give a rats patootie. Who can forget in 2013, despite irrefutable evidence of toxicity and death, when the EPA raised the allowable limit of glyphosate. Perhaps it has something to do with the revolving door between the halls of Monsanto and the Environmental Protection Agency. (Or as I like to call it, the Environmental Deception Agency.)
One controversy after another can be attributed to the EPA, an agency charged with protecting the air we breathe, the soil in which we grow our food and the water that we drink. At the bottom of each of those controversies can be found ties to the conspiracies of the big businesses that really run the country. Decisions are being auctioned off to industry lobbyists with the most money and influence.
Environmental protection is only the rule of thumb if it goes along with the green agenda in cases that benefit the redistribution of wealth, while the agency completely ignores blatant crimes against the earth if it involves, for example, fracking for the benefit of a natural gas company. (This is an absolute must-read about the billionaires who own the EPA.)
I used to content myself in believing that if something wasn’t safe, it wouldn’t be used in America, that forward-thinking, technically brilliant land that supported life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Sadly, in the case of yet another federal agency, safety is in the eye of the highest bidder. Don’t expect anything from the EPA except a quick approval of dicamba.
Don’t expect anything from the EPA except a quick approval of dicamba. And then more toxicity, more dead crops, and more cancer.