Archive for the ‘environmental toxins’ Category
FLORIDA FOREST TO BE DESTROYED FOR BIO-TECH CITY
February 14, 2011: Two FAU Alumni go to great heights to defend Endangered Species in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida suspend themselves 30 feet from the ground in the pine trees of the Briger Tract Forest in protest of the FAU/Scripps Bio-tech City plan.
Tree-sitters display banner reading “Defend These Forests”, visible to all Northbound I-95 traffic.
- Tree-sitters on Briger Tract site (561) 324-1033
- Ana Rodriguez, on site at FAU Campus Protest: (561) 374-3268
- Maya, on site at FAU Campus Protest: (413) 695-2249
Two “Tree-sitters” on the Briger Tract Forest in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida suspend 30 feet in the air holding a banner reading to all of northbound traffic on Florida Interstate I-95 to highlight their concerns regarding the FAU Scripps Bio-technology.
Law Enforcement with the Florida Department of Transportation and City of Palm Beach Gardens arrived at approximately 9 am to the site located on the northbound side of I-95 just south of the Donald Ross exit.
FDOT and PBG Gardens police have told the FAU Alumni “tree-sitters” to leave the site or risk imminent arrest. The two FAU Alumni remain suspended 30 foot high from pine trees, holding a banner that reads “Defend These Forests”.
The tree-sitters sited on-going concerns about the proposed development which their group, Everglades Earth First, has been voicing at City and County public meetings over the past year.
One tree-sitter commented “As an FAU Graduate and Palm Beach County resident I am dismayed at the lack of protection for the Endangered Species on the FAU Scripps development site. The Scripps “bio-tech city” plan promotes sprawl and will destroy endangered species located on the Briger Tract Forest. We have tried legal means to protect the site, but the developers and politicians have ignored our concerns. If the state and county refuse to protect endangered species then we must take action to preserve the remaining natural beauty of Florida.”
Further comment from the tree-sitters is available through the media contact. The tree-sitters and their banner are visible from Northbound I-95, at the Donald Ross exit adjacent to proposed “biotech city” of the Scripps Research Institute.
In conjunction with the tree-sit, forty protesters are currently converged at the existing FAU/Scripps Florida building located at 120 Scripps Way on the FAU Honors Campus. City of Jupiter police and FAU campus police are on site at the protest and have briefly detained at least one person.
“The Scripps Bio-tech City development violates the Palm Beach Gardens Comprehensive Plan. said Ana Rodriguez on-site at the FAU/Scripps protest. The government’s approval of Scripps’ Bio-tech city demonstrates that they are unwilling to protect critical habitat for Endangered Species. We are concerned about the environmental impacts of the development and the hazards of bio-technology. With bio-technology comes genetic engineering, infectious diseases and animal testing in our backyard.”
Bio-technology has been a controversial science receiving critique from farmers, the scientific community and residents globally.
The group says that the action marks the beginning of a collaborative campaign to stop the clearing of the Briger Forest, on the ground and in the treetops. Earth First! activists plan to maintain a presence on the site to ensure no endangered species habitat is destroyed, and no animals are abused in the proposed vivisection labs.
I totally forgot about my Tuesday’s ritual in all the excitement of having a fondue party at home with my friends, so today I give you TWO women, both featured in Yes! Magazine. The first is Otana Jakpor from California and the second is Lorraine Kerwood from Oregon:
She found that just two hours’ exposure to an indoor air purifier diminishes lung function. The board added her research to its evidence, and approved regulations making California the first state to restrict ozone emissions from indoor purifiers.
Otana, now 15, attributes her interest to her mother, a severe asthmatic. Since she was a child, Otana has helped her mother and tried to figure out the causes of her condition. Today, Otana works for environmental justice and awareness.
Otana has presented her research at conferences as a spokesperson for the American Lung Association, and she’s met with the head of the EPA and congressional officials to advocate national regulations for ozone emissions.
Lorraine Kerwood turned a computer-repair hobby into a community endeavor. She is executive director of Oregon-based NextStep Recycling, which provides computers and job training to disadvantaged and special-needs people, and sells refurbished computers and other electronics at two ReUse stores.
Diagnosed with autism in her youth, Kerwood taught herself how to fix computers in college. While a social worker for the Oregon Department of Child Welfare, she began refurbishing old computers for people who couldn’t afford them, mainly her clients.
Demand was so high that in 2004 Kerwood quit her job and expanded her computer operation to a warehouse. NextStep refurbished 700 tons of electronics in 2008 and expects a 34 percent increase this year.
Every week I will post a short biography from The United Nations Who’s Who of Women and the Environment. This week is featuring Kaisha Atakhanova from the Repulic of Kazakhstan:
Kaisha Atakhanova, 47, is leading the campaign to prevent nuclear waste from being commercially imported into the Republic of Kazakhstan. A biologist specializing in the genetic effects of nuclear radiation, Atakhanova founded and directs the Karaganda Ecological Center (known as EcoCenter), which promotes grassroots democracy-building and environmental protection within government and civil society.
Atakhanova recently helped defeat legislation that would have allowed even more nuclear waste to be commercially imported into the country. She and her allies argued that Kazakhstan’s mineral wealth made it unnecessary for the country to earn money from waste disposal, and pointed out that contamination would discourage international tourism.
EcoCenter’s broad and well-orchestrated campaign led the national parliament to drop the legislation in late 2003, and the victory has encouraged the growth of a grassroots environmental movement in Kazakhstan. Atakhanova, 47, continues to direct the EcoCenter, and has helped to develop a nationwide network of more than 100 activist groups.
Kaisha Atakhanova was awarded one of six 2005 Goldman Environmental Prizes in a ceremony in San Francisco on April 18. Atakhanova plans to invest her $125,000 prize in educational and environmental projects in Kazakhstan. She spoke to Grist through a translator.
Two years ago Anajai Calcano gave birth to a baby with no arms
She lives in a small wooden house with no indoor plumbing in a rural village in northern Dominican Republic, not far from where coal ash generated by Virginia-based AES Corp. wound up at the edge of the sea. More than 50,000 tons of coal ash laden with heavy metals was left at a port abutting local homes for years while the company, politicians, prosecutors, environmental activists and bureaucrats argued — and residents got sick.
Roger C. Fine, the man responsible for bringing the ash into the country, says it was only supposed to be there 90 days, but when officials shut down the operation, it ended up sitting for over 2 years.
Robert Vance, who filed the suit with Steve Phillips of Levy Phillips & Konigsberg in New York and Ian Conat of the Bifferato law firm in Wilmington, Del., sent medical experts to the town.
“Over 1,000 people got sick,” said Vance, who accompanied The Miami Herald on a visit to the area. “We tested 42 people, and more than half of those tested had abnormal, unsafe levels of arsenic in their blood.”
Read the full story on Common Dreams