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Blog Posts: November 2010

November 29th, 2010

The Disappearing Sea and The Commons

Ship cemetery at Moynak.

Sometimes at Food & Water Watch, communicating our international work and connecting it to our domestic activism can be a challenge, but it shouldn’t be. We require water for life, yet there are water stressed communities in the U.S. and around the world. And several factors are coalescing to make water the oil of the 21st century: population growth, climate change, pollution, misuse of water resources and a current industry effort to push water management into the private sphere, after centuries of management as a common resource. Read the full article…

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November 23rd, 2010

Iceberg Water Isn’t So Funny

Most consumers are becoming more aware of the negative impact of purchasing bottled water these days. But what should we do about the others? You know, the ones who want to find an iceberg, bottle it and sell it? That’s what one Newfoundlander is trying to do. Ron Stamp is planning on scraping down icebergs to make a buck. Since maneuvering a boat next to an iceberg is no easy feat, this iceberg water will not be cheap. At $10 per bottle, this gourmet water will be treated more like a bottle of wine. Read the full article…

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November 19th, 2010

Do You Care Where Your Seafood Comes From?

Do you care where your seafood comes from? The National Fisheries Institute, a trade organization for the seafood import industry, thinks you don’t.

The customer is always right. But is the customer always informed? Every day, money is made in this country based on the premise that most consumers don’t care about information pertaining to the products they buy. The imported seafood industry banks on it. Read the full article…

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November 18th, 2010

Pittsburgh Bans Drilling to Preserve its Sustainable Future

Pittsburgh has become the first place in Pennsylvania to ban the drilling of natural gas. On November 16, the Pittsburgh City Council voted unanimously to establish the “first-in-the-nation ordinance,” to prevent drilling of natural gas — also known as hydraulic fracturing or fracking — within the city limits. This is in direct conflict with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, which permits drilling. Some point to the promise of economic opportunities and jobs that the natural gas industry could bring to the region . But many believe that those opportunities are not guaranteed, and that the risks of drilling far outweigh the benefits. Pittsburgh demonstrated that it would rather invest in a long-term future, one that is free from health and environmental risks. Read the full article…

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November 17th, 2010

GE Salmon: The FDA’s Tug at Nature

A Food & Water Watch-initiated FOIA request yielded disturbing e-mails from scientists at FWS, expressing their concerns about GE salmon.

The Scottish-born American naturalist John Muir once warned, “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” Those words are certainly appropriate to call upon now.

November 22, just three days before many of us sit down to Thanksgiving dinner, is the FDA’s deadline for public comments on the approval of genetically engineered salmon. (Technically, it’s the deadline for comments regarding whether or not GE salmon should be labeled — it should — but let’s not go down that road until we’ve made a much bigger point.) We’ve reached a critical juncture in this roller coaster-like process, which is why our latest letter to the FDA is so timely and so very interesting. Read the full article…

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November 15th, 2010

4,000 Salmon Can’t Be Wrong

Oops. 4,000 salmon escaped from the Loch Duart Salmon Farm in Scotland on November 9, according to IntraFish Media. But don’t worry about it because Loch Duart is sorry. No harm, no foul, right?  Wrong. Read the full article…

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November 10th, 2010

Does Halliburton Have Something to Hide?

The E.P.A. subpoenaed nine drilling companies, including Halliburton, to find out exactly what chemicals they use for hydraulic fracturing. Eight of them, not including Halliburton, are cooperating and will provide the requested information by early December. Halliburton replied that it will “endeavor to complete its response” by the end of January. Does Halliburton think they are an exception to the rule? Oh, wait… they actually are the exception. Read the full article…

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November 9th, 2010

Cheese Biz

You can put cheese on most anything, but extra cheese won't help farmers sell more of it at a fair price.

We live in a food world of rather unusual contradictions. Some of them would almost seem amusing if it weren’t for the impact they can have on food policy and public health.

Sunday’s New York Times article on the lengths USDA goes to in its promotion of cheese consumption reveals the stunning failure of a federal agency to establish a true north when it comes to their mission that includes both giving nutrition advice and promoting American agriculture.

On one hand, in its role as the official mom of nutrition policy, the USDA warns us about the saturated fat in our cheese and reminds us that Americans eat far too much of it — three times the amount we ate in 1970. Then, on the other hand, the agency spends more money to fund marketing campaigns that encourage us to pour another layer of cheese onto our triple cheese burritos, cheese sandwiches and pizzas. Read the full article…

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November 3rd, 2010

Spill The Truth Site Wins Two Awards

Spillthetruth.org is not only our site that blows the whistle on the oil platform known as BP’s Atlantis; it is also now our two-time award-winning site.

Spillthetruth.org was created to raise awareness about another platform in the Gulf, Atlantis, which Food & Water Watch learned from a company whistleblower was operating without proper up-to-date and engineer-approved documentation–a situation that BP, in an internal email, admitted could result in “catastrophic Operator errors”. A worst-case scenario oil spill from Atlantis would be many times larger than the spill from the Horizon explosion and exceed the Exxon Valdez spill within just two days.

In less than six months since it launched, Spillthetruth.org has been recognized by two prestigious competitions. In October, along with the design firm New Signature, Spillthetruth.org won a Silver Davey Award in activism. The Davey is sanctioned and judged by the International Academy of the Visual Arts, an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising, and marketing firms.

Also in October, New Signature and Spillthetruth.org won a Silver W³ Award, which honors creative excellence on the web and the creative and marketing professionals behind award winners. To see the award-winning site and learn more about our campaign to shut-down BP Atlantis until it can be proven safe, visit Spillthetruth.org.

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November 2nd, 2010

Republicans and Democrats Unite Against GE Salmon

Today, as we await the results of elections that once again reflect the stark contrast between the ideologies of the Democratic and Republican parties, one issue has inspired bipartisan cooperation. Even in the face of midterm elections, both sides of the aisle have managed to set aside their differences to address a critical issue facing consumers. Democrats and Republicans alike are reminding the FDA that the public is not happy with their haphazard consideration of whether to approve genetically-engineered salmon — the first ever GE animal — for public consumption. Read the full article…

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