Tag Archives: cancer

Puerto Rico Struggles With Contamination 10 Years After Activists Expel U.S. Navy

2 May

Cross Posted from Democracy Now!:

“While the cleanup has taken 10 years so far, the U.S. military is only scratching the surface.” – Vieques activist

 

On the Puerto Rican island of Vieques, thousands are commemorating the 10th anniversary of when the U.S. Navy stopped using their home as a bombing range. Since the 1940s, the Navy used nearly three-quarters of the island for bombing practice, war games and dumping old munitions. The bombing stopped after campaign of nonviolent civil disobedience, but the island continues to suffer. At the current cleanup rate, the Navy says, it will take until 2025 to remove all the environmental damage left by more than 60 years of target practice. A fisherman recently discovered a giant unexploded bomb underwater. The island of about 10,000 people also lacks a hospital to treat illnesses such as asthma and cancer that may be attributed to the military’s former bombing activity. “We believe the military is really not interested in cleaning up Vieques and rather interested in continuing to punish Vieques for having thrown the U.S. Navy out in 2003,” says Robert Rabin of the Committee for the Rescue and Development of Vieques. “This is a process that we believe is happening with no real supervision, no genuine community participation.”

Filthy War Machine: US Military Industrial Complex, World’s Worst Polluter

2 Oct

The United States Military, the Pentagon. Most fossil fuel burned, most greenhouse gases released, biggest source of Mercury released into the environment, biggest source of radiological (Uranium, Plutonium) releases and the biggest amount of HAZMAT materials released into rivers, lakes, oceans and the environment and the biggest discarder of medical waste pollution — worldwide.

Retired professor and prolific author Barry Sanders spent a long time looking closely at the US Military where others hadn’t: he looked at the environmental effects and the sheer devastation that the military leaves in its wake. He compiled a frightening collection of numbers into his book The Green Zone. The Earth First! Journal interviewed him back in 2009. The devastation continues. relates in today’s OpEdNews article, Army That Poisons Together Metastasizes Together — Cruelly and Unusually, the ecological damage of the world’s most destructive force…

US Military pollution gets little notice, as the Pentagon is exempt from the US EPA-reporting criteria. Lead from firing ranges, Uranium from so-called “Depleted” Uranium munitions pollute land, lakes and streams and oceans both domestically and overseas; but the US military is exempt from US EPA Superfund regulations. Continue reading

More Jobs on a Dead Planet?

26 Sep

Bummer Reports of Pro-Industry “Protest” Around the World

As the Earth shows ever-increasing, irrefutable signs of overlapping global crises in biodiversity loss, climate change and human cancer rates, the work-vs-ecology debate continues to distract good people around the world and fuel the industrial death cult (what most politicians casually refer to as “the economy”).

For instance, The World-Herald Poll released a report today that more than half of Nebraskans can’t wait for the tar sands to plow through their farms, forests and water supply.

Meanwhile, in Northern Canada, where the tar sands currently originate, a crew of truckers and construction companies are protesting in favor of a new road, complaining about the environmental permits aimed at protecting wildlife such as fish and caribou in the regions of the Beaufort Sea, Mackenzie River delta, Yukon North Slope and western Canadian Arctic Islands…

And in Italy today, workers are occupying a dirty factory, some of them demanding the site remain in operation rather than close down temporarily for environmental upgrades.

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Villagers Sue Diamond Firms for Pollution in Zimbabwe

9 Sep

Slave laborers in a diamond mine in Zimbabwe

Report by Caiphas Chimhete, original story from The Standard

The Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association (ZELA) and villagers living along Save River are seeking a court order to bar three diamond mining companies in Marange district from polluting water sources.
ZELA is a common law trust established to promote environmental justice in the country. In a High Court application last week, ZELA and the villagers alleged that Anjin Investments (Chinese corporation that recently replaced striking workers with child laborers), Marange Resources (owned by corrupt billionaire Mhlanga) and Diamond Mining Corporation (DMC) were polluting Save, Singwizi and Odzi rivers with sewage, chemicals and metal deposits.

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Native American Health Traumas Addressed

5 Aug

cross-posted from Indian Country

By Devon G. Peña, Ph.D.

European colonizers destroyed bison populations in North America, creating negative health implications for native peoples.

One of the consequences of the conquest and settlement of North and South America by Europeans was the displacement and destruction of native biological and cultural diversity. The environmental historian Alfred Crosby has called the European invasion of the Americas [sic] a biological conquest and a form of “ecological imperialism.”

No space or native habitat touched by colonialism was spared the effects of this bio-invasion. Indigenous plants and animals were diminished by the violence and displacement associated with the arrival of European colonizers and their biotic baggage. Cattle displaced bison; sheep replaced native deer; wheat displaced maize and amaranth.

Europeans and others benefited from the arrival of the crops of Native America including amaranth, agave, avocado, bean, bell pepper, cashew, cassava, chili, cocoa (for chocolate) corn, guava, peanut, potato, pumpkin, tomato, vanilla, wild rice, and many more.

A demographic catastrophe resulted and native populations declined by 70 to 98 percent. This was caused by genocide through war, enslavement and forced labor, introduced disease (smallpox, measles), and widespread hunger and malnutrition. Many people were worked or starved to death in mines, plantations, and sweatshops.

Historical trauma and native foods

Recently, we have become more aware of the peculiar form of death facing Native peoples as a result of processes that Russel L. Barsch calls ecocide, or death caused by destruction of indigenous ecosystems including the agricultural and food systems of entire cultures and civilizations.

Research demonstrates that access to traditional foods—the nutritional substances a given people co-evolve with over generations of living and adapting to place—is essential to our health. Thus, eating poorly is not a case of persons making “poor personal choices” or engaging in “bad individual behaviors;” it is a matter of systematic discrimination and structural violence when people are denied access to the resources they need to maintain their own indigenous food traditions, cuisines, and diets.

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Not only is your cell phone an effective tracking device…

31 May

According to an Associated Press article today, A respected international panel of scientists says cellphones are possible cancer-causing agents, putting them in the same category as the pesticide DDT and gasoline engine exhaust. 

The classification was issued Tuesday in Lyon, France, by the International Agency for Research on Cancer after a review of dozens of published studies. The agency is an arm of the World Health Organization and its assessment now goes to WHO and national health agencies for possible guidance on cellphone use. The same cancer research agency who conducted the study also lists night shift work as a probable carcinogen. 

For some strange reason, the cellphone industry trade group, CTIA—The Wireless Association, was not convinced. In their response, they pointed to two US agencies that have found no evidence cellphones are linked to cancer—the Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Communications Commission. 

While a lesser known think tank, the Ludd-Kaczynski Institute for Sustainable Demolition (LKISD), agrees that cellphones, car exhaust and wage work is probably melting your brain, their research suggests a possible exception. Regarding night work, LKISD scientist Clinton Tyree says frequent eco-sabotage in the wee hours of the evening may counteract the plague of plague of industrial civilization, especially when directed against corporate scum and their government lackeys…