Daily Archives: April 2, 2016

Farmageddon – Trailer


Published on Apr 10, 2012

The story of a mom whose son healed from all allergies and asthma after consuming raw milk, and real food from farms. It depicts people all over the country who formed food co-ops and private clubs to get these foods, and how they were raided by state and local governments.
MPAA Rating: TV-G © 2011 Kristin Marie Productions, LLC .

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Farmageddon – The Unseen War on Family Farmers

denise marie

Uploaded on Jul 12, 2011

Farmageddon is about the unseen war on American Family Farmers. A documentary about the escalating fight for food rights in America.

Americans’ right to access fresh, healthy foods of their choice is under attack. Farmageddon tells the story of small, family farms that were providing safe, healthy foods to their communities and were forced to stop, sometimes through violent ac-tion, by agents of misguided government bureaucracies, and seeks to figure out why.

For more information: http://farmageddonmovie.com

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The True Cost of Cheap Meat

FARMAGEDDON The True Cost of Cheap Meat
by Philip Lymbery with Isabel Oakeshott
Bloomsbury Publishing, 2014

Posted on March 10, 2016

Farmageddon, an important expose of the disastrous failings of the global food system, never quite gets to the bottom of why the agricultural system is like it is.

reviewed by Martin Empson

It is impossible to read Farmageddon: The True Cost of Cheap Meat without coming to the conclusion that the world’s food and agriculture system is screwed. This is a system that produces enormous quantities of food, yet sees up to a third of that wasted. It’s a highly technological system requiring enormous quantities of oil, pesticides and chemicals to produce vast quantities of food; yet it’s a system that fails to feed the hungry.

Opening the book at random gives the reader plenty of ammunition to argue for a different, more rational, way to produce food. Take fishing for instance. Lymbery points out that a fifth of all fish caught is used as food for other fish in fish-farming. Some of this fish also is used as feed for pigs and other animals. Our food system spends vast quantities of energy and time producing food sources to fuel other food sources.

This is most apparent with beef. Lymbery points out that if “all the cereals alone currently fed to factory-farmed animals offered directly to people instead of being converted into meat, it could feed a mind-boggling number – as many as 3 billion folk.” This represents a tremendous waste of resources, but this isn’t simply an incredibly inefficient way of producing food. What this food system also produces is environmental disaster, ill-health in humans and frequently stressful and unhealthy animals.

So Lymbery documents the way that mass factory farming of beef, pigs and chickens in particular helps create the conditions for outbreaks of avian or swine-flu. The way over-use of antibiotics is helping to encourage drug resilience in both animals and people. The fossil fuels that drive the tractors, keep the lights on in the massive chicken farms and produce the pesticides contribute enormously towards climate change and vast quantities of manure threaten eco-systems (particularly in seas and oceans) around the globe.

The author emphasizes one thing above all else. Factory farming does not feed the world. In fact, because it sucks up other foods sources to feed animals, it actually undermines the ability to do this. In doing so it encourages (or needs) even more ridiculous solutions, such as the transportation of billions of bees vast distances to pollinate crops because the farms which use monocultural farming and high levels of pesticides have decimated local bee populations.

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Climate & Capitalism

CLIMATE & CAPITALISM is an ecosocialist journal, reflecting the viewpoint of environmental Marxism. It has three goals:

  • To provide news and analysis to inform, educate and develop the green left;
  • To contribute to building an international movement against capitalist destruction of the environment and for ecosocialism;
  • To encourage and facilitate collaboration and exchanges of views among socialists and ecology activists.

Opinions expressed in individual articles are not necessarily shared by Climate & Capitalism or Monthly Review or any of the editors.

In February 2012, we announced an alliance with the world’s foremost independent socialist journal, Monthly Review. We remain editorially independent— MR has no responsibility for our content, and vice versa — but we are sharing technical resources and exploring ways to increase both technical and political collaboration.

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Climate Fraud Investigation of Exxon Draws Attention of 17 Attorneys General | InsideClimate News

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and a coalition of attorneys general, supported by former Vice President Al Gore, vowed on March 29, 2016, to hold fossil fuel companies accountable if their words and deeds on climate change had crossed into illegality. Credit: David Sassoon/InsideClimate News

Coalition of top state law enforcement officials vows to hold fossil fuel companies accountable for their conduct on climate change.


By David Hasemyer


By Sabrina Shankman

Mar 30, 2016

A new coalition of state attorneys general gave vocal notice to fossil fuel companies on Tuesday that obfuscating the realities of climate change has put ExxonMobil and its peers under the searchlight of a broadening multistate investigation.

Announcing an alliance of top state law enforcement officers to press for urgent climate action on multiple legal fronts, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman was joined by six of his counterparts, their ranks bolstered by aides from nine additional states and the District of Columbia. The group met in New York to plan strategies and share information.

…(read more).

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Paris Climate Treaty: ‘Significant step’ as US and China agree to sign – BBC News

By Matt McGrath Environment correspondent   31 March 2016

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Presidents Obama and Xi at the Paris climate negotiations in December 2015

The US and China have issued a joint statement confirming that both countries will sign the Paris Climate Agreement next month.

Both say they will take all the “domestic steps” necessary to join the agreement as soon as possible.

They are encouraging other countries to sign the document at UN headquarters in April.

At least 55 countries representing 55% of emissions have to sign to bring it into force.

This is the third joint statement in the past two years from the world’s two biggest emitters on the question of climate change.

Back in November 2014 the two leaders outlined their plans to limit carbon emissions, a move that inspired other nations to follow suit.

At the Paris talks late last year, the presence and support of President Xi Jinping and President Barack Obama were critical factors in securing a comprehensive, longer term deal that agreed to keep global temperatures well below 2 degrees C.

But while more than 190 countries agreed to the document in the French capital, the formal process of signing and entering into force begins next month at UN headquarters in New York.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has invited world leaders to the ceremony and says he expects about 120 countries to turn up and sign on 22 April.

‘Powerful signal’

The hope is that with the big two, representing almost 40% of global emissions, now committed to the agreement, it will be much easier to get other nations to sign as well.

If the 55% or 55-country target is exceeded, then the agreement will become operational this year.

“The joint statement that the United States and China will sign and join the Paris Agreement as early as possible this year sends an extremely powerful signal,” said David Waskow from environmental campaigners World Resources Institute.

“This joint statement cements the role that climate plays in the US-China relationship. It shows the confidence that both countries have in each other’s ability to deliver on their climate commitments.”

President Obama’s domestic plans to curb carbon emissions ran into serious difficulties earlier this year when the Supreme Court issued a stay on the Clean Power Plan, designed to cut emissions by 32% by 2030 and significantly boost renewable energy.

…(read more).

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Methane Hazard Lurks in Boston’s Aging, Leaking Gas Pipes, Study Says | InsideClimate News

Credit: Darren McCollester/Getty Images

Hidden beneath Boston lies a vast network of aging iron and steel pipes that leak natural gas from thousands of points under the city. A small number of these leaks emit large volumes of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, while others pose an immediate explosion hazard, according to a recent peer-reviewed study published in the journal Environmental Pollution.

Study of 100 randomly selected pipeline leaks revealed the existence of ‘superemitters’ and potential explosion hazards.

By Phil McKenna Mar 31, 2016

The study looked at 100 randomly selected leaks from leak-prone cast iron pipes, the oldest of which had been in service since 1893. Fifteen out of 100 leaks measured in 2012 and 2014 were found to be Grade 1—leaks presenting an immediate explosion hazard—and were reported right away to the local utility company for repair. Of all 100 leaks measured, seven, known as “superemitters,” accounted for 50 percent of the emissions.

“We’re at a point, in the Northeast in particular, where we haven’t been able to revitalize infrastructure as quickly as perhaps we should,” said lead author Margaret Hendrick, a Ph.D. candidate in Boston University’s Earth & Environment department. “This is a problem that is not specific to natural gas pipes. We see this in our roads, our bridges, even our electric grid.”

Nationwide, 15 percent of remaining, aging leak-prone natural gas mains have been replaced since 2010, according to the study. Local utilities across the country, however, still rely on nearly 30,000 miles of cast and wrought iron mains to distribute natural gas to consumers. On average, 110 gas distribution pipeline incidents occur each year. The majority of the aging pipes are located in older cities in the Northeast, Hendrick said.

A 2012 study led by Hendrick’s advisor, Boston University professor Nathan Phillips, found 3,356 gas leaks under Boston, some of which had been leaking for decades. Subsequent studies have shown a consistent pattern, identifying similar numbers of leaks in Washington, D.C., and Manhattan.

Measuring the rate at which the methane is spewing from individual leaks, however, is difficult. Hendrick and colleagues used plastic buckets, large Tupperware containers and the plastic cover from a sandbox to create custom-built chambers. The devices, which they weighed down with gravel-filled tubes of burlap, were used to capture and record the volume of gas emanating from manhole covers, sidewalk gaps, and pavement fissures.

…(read more).

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Scientists nearly double sea level rise projections for 2100, because of Antarctica – The Washington Post


Landsat 8 natural-color mosaic of the ice cliff at the terminus of Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica on Jan. 9. (Knut Christianson/USGS)

By Brady Dennis and Chris Mooney March 30

Sea levels could rise nearly twice as much as previously predicted by the end of this century if carbon dioxide emissions continue unabated, an outcome that could devastate coastal communities around the globe, according to new research published Wednesday.

The main reason? Antarctica.

Scientists behind a new study published in the journal Nature used sophisticated computer models to decipher a longstanding riddle about how the massive, mostly uninhabited continent surrendered so much ice during previous warm periods on Earth. They found thatsimilar conditions in the future could lead to monumental and irreversible increases in sea levels. If high levels of greenhouse gas emissions continue, they concluded, oceans could rise by close to two meters in total (more than six feet) by the end of the century. The melting of ice on Antarctica alone could cause seas to rise more than 15 meters (49 feet) by 2500.

The startling findings paint a far grimmer picture than current consensus predictions, which have suggested that seas could rise by just under a meter at most by the year 2100. Those estimates relied on the notion that expanding ocean waters and the melting of relatively small glaciers would fuel the majority of sea level rise, rather than the massive ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica.

[The alarming science driving much higher sea level projections for this century]

The projection “nearly doubles” prior estimates of sea level rise, which had relied on a “minimal contribution from Antarctica,” said Rob DeConto of University of Massachusetts, Amherst, who authored the study with David Pollard of Penn State University.

The research already has created a buzz in the community of scientists studying Antarctica, and experts largely praised the new model as thorough and impressive, while noting its remaining uncertainties.

“People should not look at this as a futuristic scenario of things that may or may not happen. They should look at it as the tragic story we are following right now,” said Eric Rignot, an expert on Antarctica’s ice sheet and an earth sciences professor at the University of California, Irvine, who was not involved in Wednesday’s study. “We are not there yet … [But] with the current rate of emissions, we are heading that way.”

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Ian Goldin: Navigating our global future


Uploaded on Oct 23, 2009

http://www.ted.com As globalization and technological advances bring us hurtling towards a new integrated future, Ian Goldin warns that not all people may benefit equally. But, he says, if we can recognize this danger, we might yet realize the possibility of improved life for everyone.

See also:

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Fighting the World’s Fight: Against Poverty

The Rhodes Trust

Published on Oct 16, 2013

Mr David Ferreira, Mr Nick Kristof and Dr Mark Suzman

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