policy reform

Linda Wells's blog
By Linda Wells,

The Supreme Court of Minnesota recently issued a disappointing ruling on the legal rights of organic farmers faced with pesticide drift from neighboring farms.

As we reported some months ago, Oluf and Debra Johnson went to the courts when they lost their organic certification (and their crops) due to pesticide drift. They were looking for compensation for these losses, as well as future protection from pesticides drifting onto their farm. An appeals court had ruled favorably on their case — so the Johnsons were hoping for good news from the Supreme Court. Instead, the ruling severely limits potential compensation, and threatens organic enforcement standards across the state.

Pesticide Action Network's blog
By Pesticide Action Network,

A recent review of how endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) impact human health has prompted EPA to reconsider the way it measures risk from pesticides and other endocrine disrupting environmental contaminants. Finally.

Kristin Schafer's blog
By Kristin Schafer,

Three cheers for sanity on Capitol Hill! For the first time in 36 years, lawmakers voted Wednesday to strengthen the national law governing toxic chemicals. If it keeps moving and becomes law, the bill will tighten the rules governing those 84,000+ substances that make their way into our homes in everything from baby bottles to seat cushions.

True, it was the first of many steps: a committee vote in the Senate. But it's a huge, important move in the right direction — made in the face of strong pushback from the chemical industry. And it's long overdue.

Margaret Reeves's blog
By Margaret Reeves,

This week PAN joined farmworkers and farmworker advocates in urging Congress to protect a small, unsung program that’s vital to the health and safety of the nation's nearly two million farmworkers: pesticide recordkeeping.

USDA's Pesticide Recordkeeping Program is on the congressional chopping block, though it has long served as an essential tool for the proper identification, treatment and ultimately, prevention of pesticide-related illnesses that are far too common among U.S. farmworkers.

Maricela Morales's blog
By Maricela Morales,

Do you need clean and safe water? So do farmworker communities along California's central coast. Yet for far too long, their water has been polluted and contaminated by unsustainable agricultural practices.

This week, our organization is joining with partners to press the Regional Water Quality Board to address the severe water pollution problems the communities in this region face. A new Agricultural Waiver that would help has been under study, review and discussion for the past four years. Now it's time for local policymakers to take action.