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All About Garlic: Simple Gardening

This tutorial explains how to grow and pick garlic. Anybody can do it!

Garlic is easy to grow and can be grown year-round in mild climates. While sexual propagation of garlic is possible, nearly all of the garlic in cultivation is propagated asexually, by planting individual cloves in the ground. In colder climates, cloves are planted in the autumn, about six weeks before the soil freezes, and harvested in late spring or early summer. The cloves must be planted deep enough to prevent freeze/thaw, which causes mold or white rot. Garlic plants are usually very hardy, and are not attacked by many pests or diseases. Garlic plants are said to repel rabbits and moles. However, two of the major pathogens that attack garlic are nematodes and white rot disease, which remain in the soil indefinitely after the ground has become infected. Garlic can also suffer from pink root, a typically nonfatal disease that stunts the roots and turns them pink or red.

Credits

 

Https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garlic. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Dec. 2016.

 

Why are the Honeybees dying

“If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe then man would only have four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.”

— Albert Einstein

By Natalie-Marie Hart

Bees have been slowly declining in number since 1972 [1]. The drop in bee populations was traditionally called “fall dwindle disease”, which is cited here for the aid of future research; even though the word disease is not applicable. In 2006, a far more rapid bee population decline ensued. The problem was renamed to “colony collapse disorder”, or less frequently “honey bee depopulation syndrome”. Despite the various mentally-challenged naming conventions of this problem, it nevertheless is becoming a very serious problem for all of us. Prior to 2006, the gradual decline was attributed to a number of causes, including pesticide use and Varroa mites. By early 2007, the decline had reached new proportions. Bees simply disappeared, instead of dying in their hives. Large bee hives became miniature ghost towns, and there is still no official explanation for the disappearance of the bees.

“Beekeepers on the east coast of the United States complain that they have lost more than 70 percent of their stock since late last year, while the west coast has seen a decline of up to 60 percent.”

— Spiegel Magazine (2007) [2]

Ask yourself how important are honeybees to the human diet? We do not even appreciate their hard work; they pollinate 80 percent of our flowering crops, which make up 1/3 of everything we eat. Losing them could affect foods like apples, broccoli, strawberries, nuts, asparagus, blueberries and cucumbers; it may threaten our beef and dairy industries if alfalfa is not available for feed. It is Mother Nature’s gift to us.

“The [Monsanto] study concluded that there was no evidence of a ‘toxic effect of Bt corn on healthy honeybee populations’. But when, by sheer chance, the bees used in the experiments were infested with a parasite, something eerie happened. According to the Jena study, a ‘significantly stronger decline in the number of bees’ occurred among the insects that had been fed a highly concentrated Bt. poison feed.”

— Spiegel Magazine

David Schuit a Canadian Honey Farmer runs Schuit’s Saugeen Honey near Elmwood, Ontario and is experiencing an overwhelming loss of 600 hives totalling nearly 40 million bees. This all happened when a nearby GMO cornfield was planted.

In an interview I did with David Schuit he told me about pesticides called neonicotinoids and other chemicals that are causing the death of the bees and his bees. I learned that Bayer CropScience and Syngenta create these chemicals as seeds. Genetically modified corn is one of the biggest causes for the death of the bees. These chemicals are being found in soil, plants, pollen and fructose corn syrup that is often fed to bees as cheap food to replace the honey. Many people do not even know that bees get thirsty too; when bees drink water droplets from treated plants they can die of neurotoxicity within 25 minutes.

David Schuit queen bees are dying and are being replaced every few months instead of every few years. These honey farmers are losing their livelihood because the honeybees are dying.

David Schuit in an interview:
Once the corn started to get planted our bees died by the millions…
OMAFRA [Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food Rural Affairs] tells me to have faith.

Well, I think it’s criminal what is happening, and it’s hard to have faith if it doesn’t look like they are going to do anything anyway.
The province of Ontario seems to be sitting there and allowing for GMO crops to destroy our environment. We are losing a wonderful industry that Mother Nature gave us honey. They do not care if insects die off. It is all about money and profits. It has gone to far now and they do not care what happens to the environment and the people. We are going to see GMO crops being planted this year. How much more can we take of this greed it’s winning and the environment is losing a battle. We are being affected just as much as the animals and insecticides around us.

 

 

Bibliography

1. Honey Bee Die-Off Alarms Beekeepers, Crop Growers And Researchers
http://news.psu.edu/story/185396/2007/01/29/honey-bee-die-alarms-beekeepers-crop-growers-and-researchers

2. Collapsing Colonies: Are GM Crops Killing Bees?
http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/collapsing-colonies-are-gm-crops-killing-bees-a-473166.html

 

Campbell Soup To Disclose GMO Ingredients On Labels

In a move that will set the major food company apart from its competitors, Campbell Soup Company will label all ingredients that are genetically engineered on its products’ labels.

The New York Times reports that the major food industry, which produces brands like Pepperidge Farm, Prego, Plum Organics and V8 (in addition to its namesake soups), is stepping outside of the norm by choosing to label any genetically modified organisms used in its foods.

The monumental step is an important one, as presently, 92% of American consumers desire to know if GMO’s are in the food they are purchasing and eating. This pressure has spurred Campbell to take a risk – one that is being applauded by many activists.

The big food corporation is also calling for federal action to make mandatory a uniform labeling system of foods that contains such ingredients.

Said Denise Morrison, chief executive of Campbell:

“We’re optimistic that a federal solution can be reached in a reasonable amount of time, but if that’s not the case, we’re preparing to label all our products across the portfolio.

…We’ve always believed consumers have a right to know what’s in their food […], and transparency is a critical part of our purpose.”

 

This is a huge contrast from most other major food corporations, which are seeking to supersede any state’s legislation with a voluntary federal solution (such as in Vermont).

Beginning in July, however, the state of Vermont will require disclosure of genetically engineered ingredients. To comply, Campbell and other companies are already in the process of creating labels that disclose the GMO ingredients used in their products.

Credit: Campbell Soup Company

Credit: Campbell Soup Company

A sampling of the company’s new label for SpaghettiO’s can be seen to the right.

It’s sparsely worded and does not specify which individual ingredients are genetically altered, but simple states: “Partially produced with genetic engineering. For more information about G.M.O. ingredients, visit WhatsinMyFood.com.”

The change in labeling is now expected to take 12 to 18 months.

Even in states that have not made it mandatory to label GMOs, a shift in the food industry is being witnessed. Grocery stores like Kroger and Safeway have highlighted organic and ‘natural’ sections to meet consumers’ demands. In addition, food providers such as Chipotle, Ben & Jerry’s, General Mills, and even Hershey’s are taking the initiative to eliminate genetically modified ingredients in at least some of their products.

But no companies have gone as far as Campbell. You can bet this will shake up the food industry even more, in a very positive way.

In a press release, the company stated:

“- Campbell’s will be launching several lines of organic kid’s soups, and removing MSG from all their kid’s soups.  In August 2015, the company will introduce Campbell’s Organic soup for kids in three chicken noodle varieties.  The soups will be non-GMO and certified Organic.

– Pepperidge Farm will be launching several organic wheat versions of their popular Goldfish Crackers.  Look for organic wheat versions of regular, cheddar, and parmesan in the coming year.  They still need to remove GMOs and go completely organic with the rest of their ingredients.

– Increasing organics across other food lines, and increasing the number of organic products offered by Plum.”

About 75% of Campbell’s products — in addition to its namesake soups, Campbell also makes brands like Pepperidge Farm, Bolthouse Farms, Arnott’s, V8, Swanson, Pace, Prego, among others — use ingredients made from corn, canola, sugar beets, or soybeans. Almost all of the farmers producing those crops in the U.S. use GMO seed.

So for a company like Campbell, there’s no way it can simply stop using GMO ingredients and still produce the quantity of product that its customers demand. In fact, the company has no intention to make such a change because it maintains that GMOs have been repeatedly proven safe and that they may be needed to meet the increased demand for food around the globe.

Campbell cites that figure — from a survey conducted by our colleagues at Consumer Reports — as evidence that American consumers have a desire for more transparency from the companies that produce their food.

“We are operating with a ‘Consumer First’ mindset,” says Morrison. “We put the consumer at the center of everything we do. That’s how we’ve built trust for nearly 150 years. We have always believed that consumers have the right to know what’s in their food.”

Campbell has fought state-level GMO labeling requirements in California and Oregon, arguing that labeling regulations that vary from state to state create a patchwork that is too complex and costly for large food producers to deal with. Instead, it believes that a national GMO labeling standard would be best for everyone.

“We now believe that proposing a mandatory national solution is necessary,” says Morrison. “Printing a clear and simple statement on the label is the best solution for consumers and for Campbell.”

Campbell currently labels its products sold in Vermont like the soup can shown above. Below the ingredients list, it includes a disclosure stating something like “Partially Produced With Genetic Engineering,” directing consumers to its whatsinmyfood.com site for more information, including a list of the various GMO ingredients it uses across its range of products.

The company tells the NY Times that it will be working with the FDA and other regulators to craft the language for standard, nationwide GMO label for its products.

Jean Halloran, Director of Food Policy Initiatives for Consumers Union, applauded today’s announcement.

“Campbell Soup has taken an immense step forward today. Their decision to disclose which of its ingredients are genetically engineered will give consumers the information they want and deserve, even going beyond what’s required in Vermont’s labeling law,” says Halloran.

A similar sentiment was voiced by Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal.

“Campbell’s decision to add GMO labeling to their products is a courageous, commendable act of pro-consumer leadership,” said Blumenthal in a statement. “This commonsense decision by Campbell’s – and all of Campbell’s brands, including the iconic Connecticut company Pepperidge Farm – will enable consumers to make informed decisions about the food they and their families eat.”

Campbell joined other major food companies in fighting efforts to impose mandatory labeling in California and Washington State, spending more than $1 million, according to the Environmental Working Group. It is also a member of the Grocery Manufacturers Association, a trade group that has spent millions trying to get a bill passed in Congress that would make labeling voluntary and pre-empt state labeling efforts.

“We will withdraw from any coalition that doesn’t support mandatory labeling,” Ms. Morrison said. “We were involved in fighting the state ballots in California and Washington out of concern over a state-by-state patchwork, yet we didn’t participate in the fights in any other state beyond those. Any money we did spend after that was in support of seeking a federal solution.”

Credits: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/08/business/campbell-labels-will-disclose-gmo-ingredients.html

Japan: Concerns about evacuations in nuclear emergencies continue unabated

Concerns about evacuations 

in nuclear emergencies 

continue unabated

Editorial, Asahi Shinbun, August 8, 2015

http://ajw.asahi.com/article/views/editorial/AJ201508080033

The 2011 nuclear disaster resulted in a horrifying scenario in which nuclear fuel inside reactors melted down, triggering a massive release of radioactive materials into the environment outside the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has proposed a system of five layers of safety measures for nuclear power plants. The nuclear watchdog urges each country operating nuclear power plants to adopt this approach, known as “defense-in-depth,” to ensure the facilities operate safely.

The final barrier in this system is prevention of radiation exposure to people living in areas around nuclear power plants.

Specifically, this fifth and final stage of defense-in-depth should be implemented in the form of plans developed by the central and local governments to mitigate the consequences of nuclear accidents and evacuate local residents.

When the Fukushima disaster occurred, however, no effective plan existed for the mass evacuation of local residents in Japan. This is because the possibility of a severe nuclear accident had been ruled out.

As a result, the accident triggered utter chaos in local communities around the Fukushima plant.

Now, more than four years since the disaster unfolded, Kyushu Electric Power Co.’s Sendai nuclear power plant in Kagoshima Prefecture is expected to restart its No. 1 reactor as early as Aug. 11.

But the mitigation and evacuation plans currently in place are far from reassuring to local residents. The responsibility to establish the “final barrier” and ensure the safety of residents rests with the local government. There should be no headlong rush toward restarting the reactor when serious safety concerns persist.

SERIOUSNESS OF EVACUATION PLANS QUESTIONED

After the Fukushima accident, the central government made it mandatory for all local governments within 30 kilometers of a nuclear power plant to develop disaster mitigation and evacuation plans.

All the nine municipalities within 30 km of the Sendai plant have drawn up such plans. The total population of the areas covered is about 210,000.

Takuro Eto, 58, who operates a daytime care service for the elderly in Ichikikushikino, a city located about 17 km from the Sendai plant, is deeply skeptical about the evacuation plan crafted by the municipal government.

“Are they really serious about protecting the lives of people?” he said.

Many of the 10 or so elderly people who regularly come to Eto’s facility are suffering from dementia. If a serious nuclear accident occurs, they are required to return to their homes before being evacuated, according to the city’s evacuation plan. One of these patients lives alone in a house located within 10 km of the plant.

“Are we supposed to have this patient return home, which is located closer to the plant?” Eto said indignantly. “How can we ask our staffers to escort the patient home (in such an emergency)?”

How to evacuate people who cannot move on their own, such as the residents of nursing homes and hospital inpatients, also poses a challenge.

The Kagoshima prefectural government has secured evacuation destinations for the 17 nursing homes and hospitals within 10 km of the Sendai plant. As for the 227 facilities located between 10 and 30 km from the plant, however, the local government has decided to do computer searches after an accident happens to find facilities that can accommodate those evacuees.

An employee at a home for elderly people requiring special care located within a 30-km radius of the nuclear plant voices anxiety about the plan.

“We have only one staff member on night duty,” the employee said. “How can the staffer deal with evacuating the residents to an unfamiliar place in an emergency?”

Despite such concerns, the prefectural government has no plan to carry out an evacuation drill involving local residents to test the effectiveness of the evacuation plan before the reactor is brought back online.

“Kyushu Electric Power currently has no time (for such a drill) as it is busy with inspections prior to the reactor restart,” Kagoshima Governor Yuichi Ito said.

An Asahi Shimbun survey revealed that 66 percent of medical institutions and 49 percent of social welfare facilities within 30 km of nuclear power plants across Japan have not compiled mandatory evacuation plans specifying evacuation destinations, routes and transportation means to be used in the event of an accident.

DIALOGUE WITH LOCAL RESIDENTS ESSENTIAL    

The fifth level of the IAEA’s defense-in-depth safety approach–the final barrier–should be designed to work effectively to protect public health even in cases in which all the other four layers of defense have failed.

In Japan, this stage of defense is the local government’s responsibility. Evacuation plans are not covered by the Nuclear Regulation Authority’s safety assessments. Such plans are to be simply approved by the nuclear disaster prevention council, headed by the prime minister.

It should be assumed that the responsibility for protecting local residents from nuclear accidents lies with the local government, which is abreast of special regional circumstances.

According to experts, in the disaster at the Fukushima No.1 plant, even the nuclear fuel pool of the No. 4 reactor, which was offline at that time, was at risk of a severe accident.

One vital lesson from the catastrophe is that the mere existence of a nuclear reactor poses serious safety risks.

Evacuation plans are indispensable, whether the reactors are restarted or not.

To be sure, it is almost impossible to create a perfect evacuation plan. But it is possible to clarify what can be done, ascertain problems to be solved and explain them to local residents.

To do so, the local governments of areas where nuclear plants are located need to conduct drills to test the effectiveness of their mitigation and evacuation plans and hold the necessary dialogue with local residents.

It is said that a two-stage evacuation approach is effective during nuclear emergencies. Under this approach, residents within 5 km of the plant should be evacuated first. People living between 5 and 30 km from the plant should first take refuge indoors to wait for their own evacuation.

It is obvious that this approach does not work without the understanding and cooperation of the local residents.

If local governments are responsible for the safety of their residents, they should also be involved in the process of deciding on whether to restart reactors.

Currently, however, under agreements with electric utilities, only the prefectures and municipalities that host nuclear power plants have the right to agree to reactor restarts. But this right should also be given at least to all the local governments in the 30-km zone that are obliged to map out evacuation plans.

Nuclear reactors should be considered to be too dangerous if the local governments of areas that can be affected by accidents involving the reactors refuse to support their operations. These reactors should be decommissioned as soon as possible.

CONTINUED FAILURE TO ACT

The Diet’s investigative committee that looked into the Fukushima accident has pointed out that little serious effort has been made in Japan to establish even the fourth level of the IAEA’s defense-in-depth strategy for nuclear safety, or control of severe plant conditions, the stage before the final barrier.

In 2006, the Nuclear Safety Commission tried to make a sweeping review based on the IAEA standards of the priority areas designated under the government’s nuclear disaster prevention policy. But the plan was dropped in the face of opposition from the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, which feared such a review would provoke anxiety among local residents, according to the findings of the investigation.

The radiation exposure that afflicted many residents around the Fukushima plant could have been avoided. Many patients in hospitals who were not evacuated quickly enough died due to deteriorating health conditions. More than 1,900 people in Fukushima Prefecture have died due to causes related to the nuclear accident. [see note below]

Have all the relevant lessons from the calamity been gleaned and absorbed to prevent any further casualties of administrative nonfeasance?

This is the question local governments should ask first in examining and evaluating their abilities to protect residents from nuclear accidents.

–The Asahi Shimbun, Aug. 8

Note: It is not clear what is meant by 1900 people dying “due to causes related to the nuclear accident” but the editorial is probably referring to deaths caused by poor evacuation planning and execution, which is the main point of the article. This would be consistent with the previous sentence referring to patients in hospitals not being evacuated in a timely fashion.  Radiation related illnesses and deaths do not generally occur until several years after exposure. Some effects, such as increased leukemia and thyroid cancer, may occur after five years or so, while other effects, such as increased lung cancer, are generally not seen until twenty or more years afterwards.

Chernobyl – 30 Years After – April 26 2016

Gordon Edwards is interviewed on the 30th anniversary of the event that the IAEA has called “the worst industrial disaster on record”: the explosion, fire and core meltdown at Chernobyl reactor unit 4 in the Ukraine near the border with Belarus. Canada AM.

 

 

Natalie-Marie Hart Interviews Jim Marrs about the assassination of JFK

Biography:

Jim Marrs is an award-winning journalist and has over 30 years experience with several Texas newspapers. In 1999, he began teaching a course on UFOs, perhaps one of the first university level UFO courses in the nation. Jim also investigated the U.S. Army’s remote viewing program three years before it was publicly acknowledged by the CIA and then produced “Alien Agenda.” In addition, his book, “Rule by Secrecy,” has been termed an “underground best-seller”.

Websites:

Books:

 

Marking the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy,  investigative journalist Jim Marrs reflected on the nature of the JFK assassination cover-up, noting that it has been maintained for all these years by obfuscation and the presence of “too much information.” As such, he said, the case has spawned endless debates over details both great and small, resulting in confusion for the general public to the point of exasperation and, eventually, apathy. Marrs also decried the Warren Commission as a public relations effort whose goal was to “show the world that America was not a banana republic, where the government can be changed through conspiracy.”

http://jimmarrs.com/

Therapy Dog Refuses to Give Up on Hospice Patient

After seeing how this dog comforts a dying woman, you’ll understand why her boss says JJ the golden retriever is one of the most intuitive therapy dogs she’s ever worked with.

Nurse Tracy Calhoun says the four-year-old pup began its career of comforting people after the awful mudslides in Oso, Washington last year, and now works three days a week in an Oregon hospice.

The loving pup won over thousands of fans after the video below showed her insisting that an elderly hospice patient continue petting her head.

“I was very insistent to have her touch me, more so than usual,” Calhoun, writing in JJ’s voice, posted to the dog’s Facebook page. “We fell asleep later with her hand splayed on my head, both of us snoring.”

The lady had barely moved for days before JJ came into the room, and she passed away the following day.

It was almost as if the golden pooch was urging her to have one last enjoyable experience.

JJ is a member of Project Canine and HOPE: Animal-Assisted Crisis Response, a pair of groups in the Pacific Northwest that connect service and therapy dogs with people who need them.

Credit: http://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/

Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility raises their concerns about proposed Lake Huron dump site

Representatives of the groups that participated in the panel hearings on the proposal to bury nuclear wastes near Lake Huron held a press conference Tuesday morning to discuss their concerns.

Natalie-Marie Hart Interviews Pete Kennedy from Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund

Pete Kennedy is an attorney in Sarasota, Florida who works on dairy issues for the Weston A. Price Foundation, particularly, the right of farmers to distribute raw milk and raw milk products direct to consumers. He has represented or assisted in the representation of dairy farmers facing possible state enforcement action in Florida, Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan and Indiana. He has helped farmers get started in the business of distributing raw milk and raw milk products in many other states. He has written articles for Wise Traditions Magazine on the interstate ban on raw milk products for human consumption and on the legality of selling raw milk interstate for animal consumption. He compiled the state raw milk laws and state raw milk summaries posted at www.realmilk.com. He is currently working with others to challenge the federal ban on the interstate shipment of raw milk for human consumption.

http://www.farmtoconsumer.org

 

 

 

 

Two Battling Moose Discovered ‘Frozen

Jeff Erickson from Unalakleet, western Alaska was out walking in the snowy landscape near the North River on Wednesday when he made the epic discovery.

Erickson thought the two moose would make for a unique mount for his wall and set to work to free the animals from the frozen water.

“We got ’em out…..now for the cleaning,” Erickson wrote on Facebook, alongside a photo of the beheaded creatures’ blood staining the snow.

Retired biologist Bill Samuel at the University of Alberta told National Geographic he has never seen anything quite like this before.

“This happens rarely when bulls of equal size can’t decide who is boss just by displaying to each other,” Samuel told the magazine.

While moose skulls have been found entangled in the past, it’s rare to find them encased in ice.

“I have heard of locked bucks that were basically eaten alive by coyotes,” Samuel told National Geographic. “Nature can be nasty.”

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