Waimea may be one of the best examples of “Silent Spring,” written by Rachel Carson and published in 1962. “Silent Spring” describes corporate damage to the environment by spraying pesticides and corporate cover ups. In Waimea, chemical companies spray 17 times more restricted-use insecticides per acre than on ordinary cornfields in the U.S. mainland, reports the Center for Food Safety.
“Barely detectable levels of pesticides are enough to damage the coral,” said Australian biologist Andrew Negri. “As corals are symbiotic organisms, the insecticides are most likely to affect the host animal, whereas the herbicides can affect the symbiotic microalgae, which provide corals with energy,” he said. “Also, several protected marine species rest or breed on the island’s beaches, including the highly endangered Hawaiian monk seal and the threatened green sea turtle. Occasionally, an endangered leatherback and hawksbill sea turtle will wander close in (GMO giants’ pesticide use threatens rare Hawaiian species, June 17, 2014).”
A new study published Frontiers in Ecology and Environment reports, “Glyphosate raises phosphorous levels, contributing through runoff to harmful algal blooms and de-oxygenation in water bodies, killing fish,” summarizes The Organic &Non-GMO Report, May / June 2019.
What about possible damage to people in Waimea from chlorpyrifos? Chlorpyrifos was developed during World War II as a nerve gas (Wikipedia). The Center for Food Safety reports chlorpyrifos is measured to be consistently blowing through a Waimea school (“Pesticides in Paradise,” p. 46).
Studies show hidden brain defects which identify prenatal exposures to chlorpyrifos. These studies using magnetic resonant imaging (MRI) find parts of the outside of the brain indented, which is associated with lower IQ scores. Imagine a slightly deflated Wilson NCAA basketball which compresses where you push it in. Please go to https://www.pnas.org/content/109/20/7871 and see MRI brain pictures, with red areas representing “outward deformations” of the cortex and blue showing shrunken cortex from chlorpyrifos. This describes the outside of the child’s brain which was exposed to chlorpyrifos when the mother was pregnant.
Dow (renamed DowDuPont after its 2017 merger with DuPont) likely knew for decades that its widely used chlorpyrifos insecticide is harmful to humans — especially children and developing fetuses. But the company hid that information from regulators, both in the U.S. and European Union, according to the study published in Environmental Health, June 16, 2018.
Why hasn’t the Environmental Protection Agency banned chlorpyrifos and Roundup spraying in Waimea? The EPA can’t be trusted. The EPA is in the pocket of DowDupont and Monsanto.
For example, the EPA is helping the profits of Bayer (who bought out Monsanto) by claiming glyphosate is not carcinogenic. A paper published in Environmental Sciences Europe, 2019, explains why the EPA and International Agency for Research on Cancer differ regarding glyphosate and cancer. The EPA, which used unpublished Monsanto sources, found 99% of evidence that glyphosate is not genotoxic (carcinogenic). The IARC relied on published scientific studies and found 74% of studies indicate glyphosate is genotoxic. This paper shows that the EPA’s cancer classification is scientifically baseless (Organic &Non-GMO Report, March / April 2019).
Unlike the EPA, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, which is connected to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) recently identified evidence linking non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and Roundup (The Organic &Non-GMO Report, May / June 2019).
Mutagen Reviews, published February 2019, notes the increased risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma from exposure to glyphosate.
Environmental Health released a study in March 2019 which found low levels of glyphosate “induced endocrine effects and altered reproductive developmental parameters in male and female rats.”
Scientific Reports, published April, 2019, showed second- and third-generation rats suffered damage from the first generation of rats being exposed to glyphosate. “The transgenerational pathologies observed include prostate disease, obesity, kidney disease, ovarian disease and parturition (birth) abnormalities.” Analysis of the rats’ DNA led to the conclusion, “glyphosate can induce the transgenerational inheritance of disease and germline (e.g., sperm) epimutations.”
Please see a list of 36 relevant research studies on the negative health effects of biotech products, mostly covering Monsanto’s glyphosate, at https://www.gmoseralini.org/research-papers/.
There are about 11,000 lawsuits lined up against Bayer (Monsanto) for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma from exposure to Roundup.
“Whitewash,” written by journalist Carey Gillman, reviews Monsanto’s strategic deception about the safety of Roundup.
Will M. Davis is a resident of Lihue.