In what one plaintiff called “a sweeping victory for family farmers and dozens of endangered plants and animals,” a federal court in Arizona on Tuesday rescinded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2020 approval of the highly volatile herbicide dicamba for use on certain genetically engineered crops.
In a 47-page ruling, U.S. District Judge David C. Bury found that the EPA failed to comply with public notice and comment requirements under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), legislation passed in 1947 to protect agricultural workers, consumers, and the environment.
Antitrust campaigners and experts on Monday celebrated the Biden administration’s new guidelines for mergers and acquisitions, which supporters say will “restore competition and strengthen democracy.”
Farm Action co-founder and chief strategy officer Joe Maxwell commended the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) “for delivering on their commitment to restore competition to our economy.”
“The world is failing to get a grip on the climate crisis.”
That’s how United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres began his Tuesday remarks about a new U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) report on nationally determined contributions (NDCs), or countries’ plans to meet the goals of the Paris agreement, including its 1.5°C temperature target.
The UNFCCC analysis “provides yet more evidence that the world remains massively off track to limiting global warming to 1.5°C and avoiding the worst of climate catastrophe,” said Guterres. “As the report shows, global ambition stagnated over the past year and national climate plans are strikingly misaligned with the science.”
“Effectively managing the plants and fungi that form the building blocks of our habitable planet is key to halting wider biodiversity loss and restoring Earth’s ecosystems to full function,” says a scientific report.
Global scientists warned Tuesday that 45% of known flowering plant species could be at risk of disappearing, underscoring the need for urgent international action to tackle the planet’s sixth mass extinction—the first driven by human activity.
That figure is among the key findings from State of the World’s Plants and Fungi, the fifth annual report from the U.K.’s Royal Botanic Gardens (RBG), Kew about such species amid the intertwined biodiversity crisis and climate emergency.
“With so many major drivers of change predicted to worsen,” said one researcher, “it is expected that the increase of invasive alien species and their negative impacts, are likely to be significantly greater.”
As wildfires burned through 3,200 acres of land on the Hawaiian island of Maui earlier this month, ultimately killing at least 115 people and destroying the city of Lahaina, some observers noted that the dry grasses that colonial occupiers introduced in the place of Hawaii’s natural forests made the fires spread faster than they would have if the land had been left intact.
On Monday, a study resulting from nearly five years of research by experts from 49 countries revealed how the grasses are among thousands of harmful invasive alien species that have been introduced by human activities and placed communities across the globe at risk, with the human-driven climate emergency often exacerbating the negative impact of invasive plant and animal species.
Local leaders in Texas’ increasingly progressive major cities were joined by workers’ rights advocates and other pro-democracy groups on Thursday as they applauded a district court judge’s ruling that a Republican-authored law aimed at superseding local regulations is unconstitutional and should be temporarily halted.
House Bill 2127, which has been called the Death Star Law by progressive groups, had been set to go into effect on Friday and would prevent cities from enacting and passing local ordinances, including many that would protect workers’ rights.
Under a U.S. Supreme Court ruling condemned by clean water advocates earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday announced a revised rule that could clear the way for up to 63% of the country’s wetlands to lose protections that have been in place nearly half a century under the Clean Water Act.
EPA Administrator Michael Regan said he had been “disappointed” by the 5-4 decision handed down in Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency in May, but he was obligated under the ruling to issue a final rule changing the agency’s definition of “waters on the United States.”
“An industry that employs hundreds of thousands of people, provides billions in economic benefits, and promotes safer alternatives to pharmaceuticals and commonplace vices continues to be treated like a pariah,” said one cannabis entrepreneur.
Cannabis reform advocates on Friday said a new decision by credit card company Mastercard illustrates why the substance must be decriminalized at the federal level to ensure that legal U.S. dispensaries are able to operate safely and securely.
The company announced this week that it has instructed U.S. financial institutions to stop allowing customers to use its debit cards to purchase marijuana products at cannabis stores, which now operate legally in 38 states for medicinal use and 23 states for recreational use, as well as in the District of Columbia.
A UN summit on global food systems should be an opportunity to address structural inequalities and tackle hunger. It should be a chance to learn from small-scale producers whose sustainable food practices feed 70% of the world. Instead, next week’s conference in Rome will be a festival of greenwashing, allowing Big Agriculture corporations to tighten their grip on food systems.
This will be the second Food Systems Summit (UNFSS). The first, in 2021 was supposed to address the lack of progress towards the UN’s sustainable development goals. It was dubbed a “people’s summit” by the organisers, but caused an outcry among local producers when their calls to roll back the power of transnational corporations were cynically ignored.
The year that spanned April 1, 2022 to April 1, 2023 was the second deadliest on record for U.S. honeybees.
Beekeepers lost 48.2% of their managed hives, according to the initial results of the Bee Informed Partnership’s annual Colony Loss and Management Survey, released Thursday.
“This is a very troubling loss number when we barely manage sufficient colonies to meet pollination demands in the U.S.,” Jeff Pettis, a former government bee scientist and current president of the global beekeeper association Apimondia who was not involved in the study, toldThe Associated Press. “It also highlights the hard work that beekeepers must do to rebuild their colony numbers each year.”