Manufacturer of d-CON rodent poison reaches agreement with EPA

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Reckitt Benckiser, the manufacturer of d-CON rat and mouse poisons, has reportedly agreed to stop selling some its products that contain chemicals the EPA has deemed to be a risk to people, pets or wildlife.

Twelve products are on the list and they will no longer be distributed beyond March 31, 2015.

The EPA has included information – on the linked page above – for people who want to dispose of any of these products they already purchased.

Consumers who wish to dispose of any of the d-CON mouse and rat poison products listed above should contact their state or local waste disposal program or service for information on proper disposal in their community. These pesticides are harmful to the wildlife, so consumers who have opened containers should not discard them outdoors or dispose of them in sinks or toilets.

Consumers can contact their local government for recommendations on how to dispose of unwanted or unused pesticide products.

My wife and I have always been leery of rat and mouse baits/poisons and do not use them for fear of the possible ingestion by our pets.

This case is an important example of how the EPA does protect us. I keep reading about uninformed politicians who want to shut down the EPA. What a look at how we’d live without the EPA? – Just take a look at China and the areas where the air is thick with smog and rivers are toilets.

We need the EPA.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Predictions that environmental rules would devastate coal plant were completely wrong

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When it was announced three years ago that a coal-fire power plant in Pennsylvania would have to reduce its output of pollution into the air, the anti-environment crowd and operators of the plant cried that there would be horrible consequences.

None of it happened; the predictions were wrong and now we have more proof that environmental regulations can protect us, without shutting down local economies or the national economy.

Sure, there are upfront costs. But then again, in many cases we’re talking about companies that pay CEO’s massive salaries each year. A report just came out noting the median CEO pay in the US has topped $10 million per year. (Note that is the MEDIAN annual paycheck.)

It’s like Donald Sterling, who is crying about the millions he will have to pay in capital gains tax if he sells the LA Clippers – for over a billion dollars – some reports suggest $2 billion.

Boo hoo hoo. Cry me an ocean. Poor little fella. He might ONLY profit in the hundreds of millions of dollars or maybe exceeding a billion. These people are so far removed from the rest of the population, they must have nose bleeds while looking over their portfolios, bank accounts and stock holdings.

So in getting back to the coal-fired plant, the Associated Press reports

GE Energy Financial Services, the plant’s majority owner, now says it can do it — and without electricity bills increasing for the two million households it provides with power.

And guess what. People are being employed to make the upgrades.

The article does note another company filed for bankruptcy this year, when faced with having to put in place protections for the local environment. But we don’t know the underlying details about this case.

If the Pennsylvania plant can do it, why not others. That facility will invest $750 million in protecting the people. The article explains how important the move is:

Last year, the facility, released 114,245 tons of sulfur dioxide, more than all of the power plants in neighboring New York combined.

Suggesting a company’s profits are more important than protecting the lives of citizens is more than clueless and wacky. We’ve known about the devastating impacts of pollution on our air, water and ground for decades. Companies should have been spreading out their investments in protecting the public for decades. Then, the financial impacts would not have been so large in one chunk.

But instead, too many industries have poured untold millions each year into campaign donations to elect anti-environment candidates. That money could have been used to protect the environment. It’s a really moronic way to go about polluting and putting the public health at risk.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Trailer: Drill, Spill, Repeat? – It can happen again in the Gulf of Mexico

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Oceana has released a trailer for its new documentary concerning the BP Oil Gusher – and the ongoing threats four years later.

For more information, go to Oceana.org.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Former TransCanada employee has harsh words for company’s practices

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A former TransCanada Corp. employee testified last week about the company before a Canadian Senate committee and used phrases such as a “culture of noncompliance” and “coercion” and “deeply entrenched business practices that ignored legally required regulations and codes” and “significant public safety risks” – according to an articled posted Tuesday on the Huffington Post website.

And of course, all of this related to the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline that would carry tar sands oil from Canada, through the US and on to the Gulf Coast. After the hearing, Evan Vokes told the Huffington Post – “It’s organized crime, in my opinion.”

Big Oil’s safety record across the board and over many, many years is poor at best – from the Exxon Valdez to the Gulf Oil Gusher to another recent pipeline spill to many other spills and disasters in the United States and worldwide.

Who could honestly say they’d want work done around their homes by companies with sort of track record? But because it’s Big Oil, some people and some politicians will give them a pass every time. Remember in the few years leading up to the Gulf Oil Gusher how many politicians praised Big Oil as having a great safety record. That turned out to be huge strike out.

I tend to not trust people who get it all wrong to this extent. We should all be concerned with what could happen with the Keystone XL Pipeline. And because it might not be running through your state, it doesn’t mean you should not be concerned.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Studies showing dispersants used during BP Gulf Oil Gusher are destroying marine animals

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The fear was there during the BP Gulf Gulf Oil Gusher, that not only was the oil killing marine wildlife – but also the chemicals being used to “clean up” the mess.

Now, it seems studies are showing the dispersants were toxic too.

An article on TakePart.com suggests – “everything from microscopic organisms to bottlenose dolphins are now paying the highest price.” But at the time, BP Chief Executive Bob Dudley downplayed the use of the product. Should we be surprised? – No.

But as of last year certainly, scientists were finding horrible deformities in animals. We are not seeing enough in the media about this. And while the suffering goes on under the surface of the water, BP continues to play those ads, patting itself on the back as a hero to the Gulf Region.

The national media should be covering this story. I realize there are a lot of really important stories at the forefront right now and I fully understand this. But I’m also seeing reality show news and other crap. While the media reports what a music or TV celebrity is up, a tragedy continues to unfold.

Take Part also published a gallery to show the impact on sea life.

Continue reading

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Monday Commentary: Earth Day 2013 vs. The Propaganda Machine

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The nation’s knowledge and awareness in the area of science should be increasing – not decreasing or treading water.
But I fear the constant train of propaganda from corporations and from some corners of the media has sucked in enough people to hold back progress in environmental protections.

And unfortunately, too many elected officials are working against the general welfare of the American people and against our environment and against science – and for increased profits for Big Oil and other big players. Mr. Potter from “It’s a Wonderful Life” would be proud of these politicians, but we shouldn’t be.

And when these politicians and their bosses or puppet masters read about cancer risks from polluted water and the air we’re breathing or the impact of climate change or the impacts of deforestation or the suffering or loss of wildlife species – their response seems to be – “If they are going to die, then they better do it and decrease the surplus population.”

The anti-science and anti-environmental propaganda has reached new levels. All we need to do is watch the disgusting BP ads on TV and the other ads promoting how safe fracking and the nation’s pipelines are. Big Oil used to produce ads about how much better its gas was for your car. Now, the ads are nothing more than pure propaganda.

We’ve taken a big step backward. Who would have thought decades ago that Big Coal would be allowed to completely destroy beautiful mountain ranges?

It is Earth Day 2013 and sadly it seems environmental awareness has declined since the era of the first Earth Day, decades ago. Can we effectively battle against the propaganda train? I am holding out hope. I just hope it won’t be too late.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Aerial video of Exxon oil spill in Arkansas

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Once again, we have another environmental disaster. But Big Oil will mark it down as no big deal.

And at some point in the not too distant future, someone will appear on a cable news show to ask – “What spill? We never have spills.”

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

The environmental and animal welfare news out of China only gets worse

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What is going on in China is extremely troubling. The air is bad. The water is polluted. Animals are suffering. And people are suffering. And reports indicate the government is looking the other way.

We’re seeing greed rule the day in China. The only things standing in the way of the US becoming the environmental equivalent of China are the somewhat thin environmental and animal welfare standards that have managed to make their way through the greed in our system.

Yet, we still have a segment of elected officials and pundits who want to gut the regulations we do have. I don’t want to see the US bow completely to the greedy and I don’t want to see the US become the cesspool that China’s environment has become.

We had the news that 16,000 dead pigs have been found in the Haungpu River. And now we have the news that 1,000 dead ducks have been found in the Nanhe River. Officials are swimming around this muck to come up with excuses and to minimize the health implications.

I wanted to look into any recent news about China’s environmental regulations. Maybe things have gotten a little better – and if so, I wanted to know about. It took only one quick search to uncover the troubling status.

The Wall Street Journal reports the regulatory system is a mess there. One sentence in the article tells the tale:

The problems in Nantong are a tale of environmental protection gone seriously wrong in a country where money clearly talks.

The article uses phrases such as “racket” and “scandal” in its reporting. And then we have this description:

… the China Business News argued that rapid economic development had created fertile ground for official corruption and pollution.

This is the door that some politicians want to open – even wider than it is already open – here in the US.

 

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic