Germany plans to abstain on vote that could approve growing another genetically engineered crop

Learn more about genetically modified foods so you can make informed, healthy choices

And here I thought that Europeans had a better handle on the hazards of GMO crops than we do.

Yesterday, a government spokesman said that Germany intends to abstain in a European Union vote next Tuesday on the cultivation of a new type of genetically modified maize. Some German opposition politicians said an abstention could lead to the European Commission giving a green light for the maize to be farmed. However diplomats in Brussels said Germany’s move might not be enough to ensure EU approval.

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Painless Green – an easy resource for a greener lifestyle

Adding solar panels is just one way to reduce your energy use and live green

Having a green lifestyle doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. This recurring theme is evident throughout Shel Horowitz’s e-book: “Painless Green: 111 Tips to Help the Environment, Lower Your Carbon Footprint, Cut Your Budget, and Improve Your Quality of Life-With No Negative Impact on Your Lifestyle.

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Safe Omega-3 from the ocean

Approximately 2 million tons of calamari are caught each year to produce calamari rings and fillets for food markets around the world. Almost 200,000 tons of that go unused – either thrown away or used for animal feed.CardioTabs Inc. is turning this massive waste into something healthy and beneficial.

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Beat It! Insect Repellent stops insects naturally

Summer brings out all sorts of creepy, crawly, and/or pesky flying insects. 

In the past, we’d reach for a heavy duty insect repellent for protection. Remember those TV ads with the guy inside a glass cased-room filled with mosquitoes? 

These days, there a number of natural insect repellents on the market. Some work better than others but most have an incredibly strong scent that can knock you back f you’re the least bit sensitive to smell. 

I recently found a natural insect repellent that not only works well, but its scent won’t announce itself from a distance. 

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Innovative Water Wand makes tap water healthier

Water-In-Human-BodyThe human body consists of 75 percent water, though babies are over 90 percent. The amount and quality of the water we drink daily has a profound effect on our health and well-being. 

Over the past 15 years, the purity of the drinking water has improved in the US. But a report by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) shows tap water is getting worse, due in large part to old pipes that can leach contaminants and breed bacteria, weakened legislative water protections. delayed or weakened standards of levels of contaminants and/or the elimination of water protection programs. 

The government allows a percentage of contaminants in our tap water, which almost none of the water filters available on the market today – from the moderately priced to the more expensive ones – completely filter out. 

The Water Wand, a compact personal water filter made of high-grade stainless steel, is about to change that. 

The Water Wand infuses tap water with the best qualities of pure mountain spring water

The Water Wand infuses tap water with the best qualities of pure mountain spring water

 

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Will Mexico's new planned wastewater plant harm lush farmland?

the lush Mezquital Valley, Mexico

the lush Mezquital Valley, Mexico

Sewers of Mexico city  have been spewing “black water” 60 miles downhill to irrigate what is now lush farmland in the Mezquital Valley, in the Mexican state of Hidalgo. Though the stench belies the bucolic view of corn and alfalfa fields, the water is filled with toxins, including chemicals dumped by factories.

Mexico City has flushed its wastewater for the past 100 years to help irrigate this farmland through a series of canals that then trickle out onto the fields. The government recently announced plans to build a giant wastewater treatment plant, the first proactive measure it’s taken to manage flooding wastewater in almost 40 years.

Budgeted to cost $1 billion, the plant will begin operating in 2012 and will clean 60 percent of the city’s wastewater.

Farmers fear the new treatment plant will take away not only the harmful chemicals but also the natural fertilizers thy count on for their crops. Currently, the black water irrigates 350 square miles of the Valley. Because of the toxic brew, government officials direct farmers not to grow crops where the edible part comes into contact with the irrigation water and is eaten raw. This covers vegetables like lettuce, carrots or beets. Spotty enforcement and a flexible interpretation of the regulations often has farmers circumventing these rules.

This leads me to wonder. Having grown up near the southern border of Texas, we were always warned not to eat food from street vendors or risk severe stomach problems – “Pancho Villa’s Revenge”. In light of these farming practices,  the pieces of the puzzle finally fall into place. It’s easy to understand how food there can become contaminated.

Yet long-held beliefs are hard to shake.

A  75-year-old, fifth-generation farmer, Jesús Aldana Ángeles, says “Bad water would never make anything green,” he said. “But here the black waters turn everything green.”