Does Organic Mean Pesticide Free?

Photo by: Ruth Hartnup By Teresa Joaquim It is a common misconception that when we see the label "organic" on fresh produce that it is free of chemical pesticides. However, the term "organic" does not necessarily mean "pesticide-free". Organic produce can have pesticide residue from organic pesticides used in their cultivation. Continue reading

Phosphate Mining in Idaho: Recent Court Rulings, Settlements, Links to Roundup & the Urgent Need for Change

Image by Bonnie Gestring/Earthworks showing the Smoky Canyon Mine in southeast Idaho, also owned by Simplot and mainly mined for phosphate ore (By Christina Stucker-Gassi & Sidney Fellows, NCAP Program Staff) Recently, the hard work of many paid off when a federal judge blocked a permit that had previously been granted by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for the Caldwell Canyon Mine outside of Soda Springs in Southeast Idaho.1 This permit was submitted by the multinational pharmaceutical and biotechnology company and common household name Bayer. In 2018, Bayer acquired Monsanto and the mine near Soda Springs is reported to be a major piece of the supply chain for global glyphosate manufacturing.2 Glyphosate = Roundup, the herbicide stirring up so much controversy, not to mention super weeds that, according to field reports, are becoming a bigger issue in the region. In related news a settlement was reached between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Simplot Corporation related to another phosphate refining facility in Southeast Idaho.2 Continue reading

5 Fruit Trees You Can Grow in Your Backyard Without Pesticides

Image: Pexels (By Chris Tweten, Perfect Plants) There’s nothing better than the juicy sweetness of fresh fruits you just brought home to enjoy. But wait—have you ever wondered about the pesticides lurking on those store-bought fruits you typically consume? Pesticides, used to protect crops from pests, weeds and disease, can leave harmful residues that make their way into our bodies as well as the environment. Continue reading

Safety measures during the hot season

(By Tommy Díaz, Healthy People & Communities Program Manager) It seems to have become a sad aspect of the summer season: every year hotter temperatures bring along wildfires, heat waves and smoke. So far we’ve seen Canada going through its “worst wildfire season in a century”, an apocalyptic-looking New York City sky blanketed under smoke coming from the North, and a busy season is expected around the Pacific Northwest and California. Continue reading

Get Your Yard Into Shape

Every season, many of us spend countless backbreaking hours working on our lawns and gardens. But are our efforts actually harming the planet? Are we condemning our local flora and fauna and choosing instead flowers that are decorative, but also invasive and possibly poisonous to birds and other wildlife (not to mention our beloved pets)? If you want to get your yard in gear AND help the planet at the same time, we’ve got you covered! Continue reading