Monday, April 06, 2009

Beyond Pesticides Conference

Good Evening Neighbor:

A most interesting conference - especially when they directly spell out the neurological disorders that are directly linked to organophosphate poisoning - Ethoprop - see Dr. Kamel's studies below.  The research is clear that our varying disorders and the high chance that many of us will become ill in the next 10 to 20 years is overwhelming.  And, is exactly the reason we must hold the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) to the fire to follow our community's illnesses.  I am including a link again so you can hear the failure of this agency to do their job.  The Georgia attendees - of three - made a public proposal to the Washington D.C. based group Beyond Pesticides that we collaborate on a new document "The Citizens Proposal for Environmental Protection"  and present it at the "National Conversation" that is being formulated by Dr. Howard Frumkin - Director of ATSDR.  You can rest assured I did not mince words - I am tired of having "conversations" - I believe if you are in the position of power to make a positive change with regard to immediate help for the health and safety of people it should be in action - no conversation needed. But, since it appears that there is an inability on their part to proceed - we will have to give them the guidelines for making something happen not 10 years from now BUT NOW.  Which brings me to another point - I cannot tell you how disgusted I am that we spent time and much effort testifying at our State Capitol in November of 2007 and no action has been taken whatsoever to correct the Georgia Environmental Protection Division.  Did they just have us there to speak to get us off of their back - it appears so!!  I hope for something very different on the national level.

There were many wonderful speakers at this conference who have published very well written books and I am linking them below as well.  

The Task Force will be meeting on the 13th and will begin preparations for the National Conversation!!!

Your neighbor,


Connie Thomas Biemiller, Chair
South Fulton and Fayette Community Task Force

Philip Shabecoff, co-author of the new book Poisoned Profits: The toxic assault on our children, served as chief environmental correspondent for The New York Times for fourteen years. Mr. Shabecoff also founded Greenwire, an online digest of environmental news and was selected as one of the "Global 500" by the United Nations' Environmental Program. His previous books include A Fierce Green Fire: A History of the American Environmental Movement.

Alice Shabecoff, co-author of Poisoned Profits: The toxic assault on our children, is a freelance journalist focusing on family and consumer topics. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, and the International Herald Tribune, among other publications. She was executive director of the National Consumers League and Community Information Exchange. Her previous books include A Guide to Careers in Community Development.

Freya Kamel, Ph.D. is a staff scientist at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Dr. Kamel's focus is on environmental determinants of neurologic dysfunction and disease, in particular, neurodegenerative disease. Dr. Kamel's research team which linked pesticide exposure in North Carolina and Iowa pesticide applicators to an increased risk of diabetes, showing that all seven pesticides examined contributed to a 20-200 percent increase in risk. Dr. Kamel has also studied the links between pesticides and Parkinson's disease and retinal degeneration, a leading cause of blindness. See her NIEHS studies.

Jim Hightower is a national radio commentator and author of many books, including his latest, Swim Against The Current: Even A Dead Fish Can Go With The Flow. Mr. Hightower has spent three decades battling the Powers That Be on behalf of the Powers That Ought To Be. Twice elected Texas Agriculture Commissioner, Jim has become a leading voice for those who no longer find themselves within shouting distance of Washington and Wall Street. He's a modern-day Johnny Appleseed, spreading the message of progressive populism all across the American grassroots.

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