Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Dow Chemical and Monsanto Are At It Again as EPA and USDA Approve "Agent Orange" Crops
In a long overdue effort, the U.S. is currently spending millions of dollars to help the Vietnamese clean up the tragic legacy of our use of Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. The effort to remove the remaining contamination caused by the toxic mix of herbicides is expected to be completed in the next few years.
Agent Orange was primarily manufactured by Dow Chemical and Monsanto, and these two companies are at it again. This time, they've teamed up to unleash a mixture of their chemical herbicides on the American farmland. The Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently gave Dow Chemical approval to manufacture and sell next generation, genetically engineered (GE) corn and soy that can withstand massive dosing of the herbicide 2,4-D. The gene altered crops are also resistant to Monsanto's glyphosate herbicide, Roundup. The new combined GE crop systems are given the appropriately military name "Enlist Duo."
We know what the coupling of Dow and Monsanto did to Vietnam, but what will it mean for America? Well, currently, because of Monsanto's "Roundup Ready" GE crops we have used over 500 million more pounds of herbicide since their introduction. USDA now says that the approval of Dow Chemical's "Agent Orange" crops will increase the use of 2,4-D up to seven times. That's as much as 176 million more pounds of toxic 2,4-D sprayed on our crops each year.
We already know that Roundup can be incredibly deadly to certain aquatic organisms and can lead to organ damage in lab animals, but what about its new partner 2,4-D? As 2,4-D was an element in Agent Orange, it should come as no surprise that 2,4-D is even more toxic than Roundup. 2,4-D has been linked to non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, lowered sperm counts, liver disease, and Parkinson's disease. Studies have also demonstrated the chemical's adverse effects on hormonal, reproductive, neurological, and immune systems. 2,4-D is the seventh largest source of dioxins in our environment. Dioxins are highly toxic chemical byproducts that can bioaccumulate, which means they can build up in our system and our environment, over time.

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