Tag Archives: EDO.herbicide free future for Huonbrook

From PAN. Pesticide Action Network.


Roundup is in the news quite a lot these days. 

Earlier this month, Miami banned use of the herbicide, joining dozens of other municipalities across the USA – from Santa Rosa, California to Portland, Maine – they are taking action as concerns continue to mount around the chemical’s impact on public health.

And its not before time. Back in 2015, cancer scientists and experts at the World Health Organization found that glyphosate- the active ingredient  in Roundup-was a “probable” cause of cancer in humans. Roundup’s maker, Monsanto (recently acquired by Bayer) then launched an all out offensive to discredit the scientists involved in this finding.

But the cat is out of the bag. Not only is evidence of cancer and additional health effects mounting, it is also increasingly clear that for years, then Monsanto officials were hard at work suppressing science linking their very profitable product  that linked their flagship herbicide with health impacts. 

As journalist Carey Gillam documents in her powerful expose WHITEWASH, they waged an aggressive-and successful-campaign to convince the USA’s EPA ( environmental protection agency) regulators to look the other way.

Read more at panna.org. 

Our only memorials
should be the trees
that we planted.

Turn camphor patches into rainforest without herbicides



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EDO worth supporting.

A global crash in insect populations has found its way to Australia, with entomologists across the country reporting lower than average numbers of wild insects.
University of Sydney entomologist Dr Cameron Webb said researchers around the world widely acknowledge that insect populations are in decline, but are at a loss to determine the cause.
“On one hand it might be the widespread use of insecticides, on the other hand it might be urbanisation and the fact that we’re eliminating some of the plants where it’s really critical that these insects complete their development,” Dr Webb said.
“Add in to the mix climate change and sea level rise and it’s incredibly difficult to predict exactly what it is.”
‘It’s left me dumbfounded’
Entomologist and owner of the Australian Insect Farm, near Innisfail in far north Queensland, Jack Hasenpusch is usually able to collect swarms of wild insects at this time of year.
“I’ve been wondering for the last few years why some of the insects have been dropping off and put it down to lack of rainfall,” Mr Hasenpusch said.


Dear Don,
Well it’s been a huge week for everyone at EDO, and our clients across NSW.
Firstly we had the report from the SA Royal Commission into the Murray-Darling Basin, which validated the legal advice and submissions we’ve made over the past several years and reinforced the pressing need for the policy changes our expert staff are recommending.

Then we had Friday’s fantastic win on our Rocky Hill case in the Land and Environment Court – a wonderful result for the community of Gloucester, a testament to our Barrister, Robert White, expert witnesses Emeritus Professor Dr Will Steffen, energy analyst Tim Buckley, acoustics expert Stephen Gauld and anthropologist Dr Hedda Askland, and a hugely important judgment in Australian climate litigation. THANK YOU to everyone who supported us while we built and argued our case – we could not have done it without you!

Chief Justice Brian Preston SC handed down his judgment in our landmark case, refusing approval of a new coal mine to be built just outside of the small town of Gloucester. This is the first time an Australian court has refused consent for a coal mine on the basis of its climate change impacts. The judgment poses a foundational question for all future fossil fuel projects: “the wrong time” test.

The Court accepted our scientific evidence and the concept of a global carbon budget. In the face of that acceptance, the judgment presents a foundational question for all decision makers on fossil fuel projects: given that, if we are to remain within the global carbon budget, only a finite amount of additional carbon can be burned, and that existing approvals already exhaust that budget, why should this particular project be prioritised over any other, or displace an existing approval? That is ‘the wrong time’ test, and I believe it will prove an insurmountable barrier for many projects going forward.

As you know, we argued on behalf of Groundswell Gloucester that the proposed mine was contrary to the public interest and principles of ecologically sustainable development because of its significant social and climate change impacts. The Court accepted those arguments in deciding to refuse approval for the mine, finding that carbon emissions from the mine will contribute to global warming, and approving it will not assist in achieving the rapid and deep reductions in emissions needed in order to meet Australia’s Paris targets.

Significantly, the Court held that it was not important that emissions from the mine would be a fraction of global total emissions, noting that the global problem of climate change needs to be addressed by multiple local actions to mitigate emissions. The Court also found that the mine’s economic benefits had been substantially overstated.

Importantly, the Court found that the Rocky Hill coal project will cause a variety of serious negative social impacts to the Gloucester community, including visual, noise and dust impacts, and significant impacts to Aboriginal Cultural Heritage, stating that the mine will severely impact on people’s sense of place – especially damaging to local Aboriginal people and their connection to Country.

In summing up his judgment, Chief Justice Preston SC said: “In short, an open cut coal mine in this part of the Gloucester valley would be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Wrong place because an open cut coal mine in this scenic and cultural landscape, proximate to many people’s homes and farms, will cause significant planning, amenity, visual and social impacts. Wrong time because the greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) of the coal mine and its product will increase global total concentrations of GHGs at a time when what is now urgently needed, in order to meet generally agreed climate targets, is a rapid and deep decrease in GHG emissions. These dire consequences should be avoided. The Project should be refused.”

This landmark case is a seminal moment in the development of climate litigation in Australia and well and truly puts us on the map in terms of international climate change litigation. EDO’s public interest environmental lawyers are at the forefront of using the law to protect our climate and nature for current and future generations.

Donate to build the EDO’s Environmental Defence Fund

From sharp stones to smart phones

we are victims of our technologies
– but the planet a million times more so.


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Live animal trade.

Excellent morning with a 6 am start. Cool as the soft light of the rising sun glowed the myriad of greens amongst the trees. The wallabies scurrying into the forest as we tramped our way up hill. Scores of birds calling as they sort out their boundaries.

Mike ( a volunteer) wanted to come and work in a follow up area where we hand pulled lots of wild tobacco and scotch thistles. I am not one to say no to an interested person who is keen the see a herbicide free working site.

A great 2 hours where we hand weeded around pencil cedars, red and white cedars, native tamarinds, celerywood , bobble nuts, bangalow palms and numerous others. Its very satisfying work at ground level and as the soil is moist, easy pulling. A new forest already emerging.

Great work Mike, thank you. Shame you won’t be around until mid next year.

3 more Christmas cakes out of the oven. First Christmas breakfast in Mullumbimby in the morning.https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/dec/11/we-could-smell-the-boat-approaching-grim-truth-animal-exports-israel-haifa

PALM OIL………SCIENCE ON RADIO NATIONAL.Saturday 8 December 2018 12:33PM (view full episode)

The warnings are becoming more urgent. Time is running out to avoid breaching a 1.5-degree rise in global temperatures, which would see irreparable damage to entire ecosystems and society. So far, our efforts have been insufficient. Emissions continue to rise. Natural forests, especially those in the tropics play a key role in climate stabilization and maintaining biodiversity. But in Southest Asia, in recent years, forests and peatlands have been cleared for palm oil, with production rising from 3 million tonnes in 1970 to 70 million tonnes in 2017. The paradox lies in palm oil being a very efficient crop. It is six times more productive than its nearest vegetable rival oil using less land and growing faster. In addition, more than half the imports to the EU are used for biodiesel, replacing diesel from fossil fuels. Brendan May outlines the dilemma of palm oil and calls for action from various quarters.


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Saturday, working volunteer morning.

8 am meeting at Mill Road Huonbrook Herbicide Free Volunteers will follow up to remove Jump-seed from the road verges. 

Our 4 year effort has seen a dramatic reduction with the plant reseeding in patches which we will remove on Saturday.

Our original volunteer mornings  begun when council sent contractors to spray the drain with glyphosate  where Jump-seed had established itself.

The spraying was instigated by Wilson Creek Land-care.

Wear bright covering clothing, sensible sturdy shoes or boots, work gloves and hat.

Bring drinking water too.

Estimated 10 30 am finish.

Byron Shire Chemical Free Landcare next working bee will be on Saturday the 1st December, from 9 am until 1 pm, at New Brighton chemical free site. We will be there removing Glory lily, Bitou bush and Ground asparagus seedlings. We are specially looking forward to meet Ocean Shores locals, that would like to help with this project. Please meet us at the first curve, on the left, at North Head Road. Park your car and walk into the beach. The site is towards the south directions and you will see us on the dunes. This is a short strip of land, between the ocean and the back of the houses. Please wear boots, long sleeve shirt and long pants, a hat, gloves and bring water. Tools and first aid kit will be provided, however if you have a serrated knife, that you don’t mind to be used on the send, it will be great to bring for the Asparagus removal.


BSCFL is a project of Mullum Seed

Mullumbimby Sustainability Education and Enterprise Development Incorporated

Nadia de Souza Pietramale

Project Coordinator

0478 272 300

This is Australia in 2018.



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Extraordinary week within Australian politics with the climate change deniers now in place to take over our Government.




Great news, however we already know it is danger, how are we going to convince locals that it is danger to use it, until it becomes prohibited?

BSCFL is a project of Mullum Seed
Mullumbimby Sustainability Education and Enterprise Development Incorporated

Nadia de Souza Pietramale
Project Coordinator
0478 272 300

Tragedy is land-care and other Herbicide users still have not listened to the readily available science.

Byron Shire Chemical Free Landcare next fortnightly working bee will be on Saturday, the 25th of August, from 9 am to 1 pm, at Brunswick Heads Crown Land Reserve site. Meet at the end of South Beach Road fire track gate, not far from the Surf Club. Please wear boots, long sleeve shirt and long pants, a hat, gloves and bring water, and some morning tea. Tools and first aid kit will be provided.

The great news is that we have completed all Bitou Bush primary work. Well done and thank you all who have offered a hand for the last 8 years.

Although the south east corner was sprayed, a patch was left in the middle, so at our last working bee on Saturday the 11th of August the remaining plants were cut and crowned. Unfortunately we haven’t heard back from Crown Lands about who did the spraying.

Sadly we have documented the deaths of juvenile Coastal Banksias that were sprayed while the unknown contractors were spraying solitary Bitou seedlings. There was not many seedlings to spray as we do regular follow ups and the ones left would not produce seeds for another 2 years, so the spray was totally unnecessary, disrespectful, uneconomic, and inefficient.

Illegal camping is still our biggest challenge. One local camper, as I documented on Saturday the 11th, has just burnt a patch of regeneration to place his tent, a highly dangerous approach, as it is very dry and can lead to wild fires.

We already had 3 acres burnt recently, caused by illegal camping. I have asked several times for help from the police and Crown Lands regarding illegal camping, however we have been ignored. As if the fact that it is very costly to put a fire out isn’t enough, it is life threatening if it goes wild toward Brunswick or Tyagarah. So I need your help with letter writing. Can you write to Byron Shire Council, Police and Crown Lands requesting urgent action to better manage this matter. Our site is under Crown Lands management, Lot 428.

I have checked the New Brighton site and it is still too early for us to work there – we need to wait for the Bitou Bush to grow larger before we can start to pull all seedlings.

The next working bee task will be to follow up Bitou bush seedlings and Tea tree, starting from the North boundary and heading South.

Looking forward to seeing you on Saturday.

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Monsanto( Bayer) faces masses lawsuit action over its weed killer Round-up.

Headlines in our local paper and an editorial on Pesticide use in our Byron Shire. As we see an increase of herbicide use through out the Shire. From large stands of Camphor and Coral to drain and creek edge spraying with Round-up.

Investigative Journalist, Cary Gillam will be a guest speaker at the Byron Writers Festival from August 3 to the 5th.


Its hard to avoid plastic, even for me living here. I take bags to the health food shop and the market. But invariably plastic creeps in. Luckily very little but I still have to hand carry it out to the recycled bins now placed around Mullumbimby streets. I pick up too from the road sides when I walk out. Mostly the lined crisp bags, coffee takeaway containers, the odd beer can ( I remember first arriving in Australia in the 60s as a teenager and hitching over most of the east coast, being horrified at the amount of broken beer bottles and general rubbish along the sides of the roads.)


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Humans have been farming for 10,000 years. It was just about 60 years ago that humans started industrializing agriculture in the U.S. and around the world. After World War II, chemical companies needed a market for wartime inventions and pesticides were put to work in the fields. In the decades that followed, trade and development policy — coupled with savvy marketing by chemical companies — effectively developed an entire model of industrial agriculture.
Today, pesticides touch every aspect of our lives, from residues on our produce to increased chronic disease to biodiversity loss. It’s time for a dramatic shift in our food and farming system.

Here in our once beautiful valley the creep of dying and dead camphor and coral trees are becoming more visible by the week.

I think my current pessimism is fueled by viewing this and with the local community meetings, who are proclaiming a Telstra tower and the resulting radiation will kill bio-diversity with no mention of the increasing herbicide use.

Reality indicates our copper land-lines will no longer operate after 2020? With no maintenance and my December 2017 experience with no phone for 26 days, we have to be realistic and connect to the satellite . The Telstra tower seems irrelevant already.

While all around us 100s of litres of herbicides are being used to poison the so called flora intruders.  No mention of the proven 100s of insects and 4 butterfly species that have adapted to the camphor tree.

From the Chairman at The East London Garden Society

France the latest country to ban the product, a European Parliament ban on retail sales. Why do local authorities still use it?
1,200 Percent Increase of Weed Killer in Your Body
• Researchers tested urine levels of glyphosate and its metabolite aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) among 100 people living in Southern California over a period of 23 years — from 1993 to 2016
• The prevalence of human exposure to glyphosate increased by 500 percent during the study period while actual levels of the chemical, in ug/ml, increased by a shocking 1,208 percent.
Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, is the most heavily used agricultural chemical of all time. It’s a mind-boggling amount of usage for one agricultural chemical, and it was only a matter of time before the wide-reaching environmental and public health implications became apparent.
Monsanto advertised Roundup as “biodegradable” and “environmentally friendly,” even going so far as to claim it “left the soil clean” — until they were found guilty of false advertising. Now It’s showing up in people, at alarming levels, with unknown effects on human health.
Study Reveals 1,200 Percent Increase in Glyphosate Levels
Researchers from University of California San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine tested urine levels of glyphosate and its metabolite aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) among 100 people living in Southern California over a period of 23 years — from 1993 to 2016. The starting year is 1994 genetically engineered (GE) crops were introduced in the U.S.
Glyphosate is used in large quantities on GE glyphosate-tolerant, and its use increased nearly fifteen fold since 1996. Glyphosate is also a popular tool for desiccating (or accelerating the drying out) of crops like wheat and oats, with the UCSD researchers noting in JAMA that Roundup is “applied as a desiccant to most small non-genetically modified grains.” So for both the GE crops and non-GE grains, glyphosate “is found in these crops at harvest.”
At the start of the study, Paul Mills, professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California San Diego, stated that very few of the participants had detectable levels of glyphosate in their urine, but by 2016, 70 percent of them did. Overall, the prevalence of human exposure to glyphosate increased by 500 percent during the study period while actual levels of the chemical, in ug/ml, increased by a shocking 1,208 percent.
It’s unknown what this means for human health but, in 2017, separate research revealed that daily exposure to ultra-low levels of glyphosate for two years led to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in rats.7 Mills stated that the glyphosate levels revealed by their JAMA study were 100-fold greater than those detected in the rat study.
In response to the featured study, Monsanto was quick to say that the amounts reported “do not raise health concerns,” and that the fact that the chemical is detected in urine is just “one way our bodies get rid of nonessential substances.” Speaking to GM Watch, Michael Antoniou of King’s College London had another take on the matter:
“This is the first study to longitudinally track urine levels of glyphosate over a period before and after the introduction of GM glyphosate-tolerant crops. It is yet another example illustrating that the vast majority of present-day Americans have readily detectable levels of glyphosate in their urine, ranging from 0.3 parts per billion, as in this study, to ten times higher – 3 or more parts per billion – detected by others.
These results are worrying because there is increasing evidence to show that exposure to glyphosate-based herbicides below regulatory safety limits can be harmful.”
Concerns over glyphosate’s toxicity have been mounting since the International Agency for Research on Cancer’s (IARC) 2015 determination that glyphosate is a “probable carcinogen.” As of July 2017, California’s Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment also listed glyphosate as a chemical known to cause cancer under Proposition 65, which requires consumer products with potential cancer-causing ingredients to bear warning labels.
Meanwhile, in the EU, European Commission leaders met in March 2016 to vote on whether to renew a 15-year license for glyphosate, which was set to expire in June of that year. The decision was tabled amid mounting opposition, as more than 180,000 Europeans signed a petition calling for glyphosate to be banned outright. Ultimately, more than 2 million signatures were collected against relicensing the chemical.
The European Parliament voted in favour of phasing out glyphosate over the next five years and immediately banned it for household use. As EcoWatch reported, Nathan Donley, a senior scientist with the Center for Biological Diversity noted:
“This wasn’t just a vote against glyphosate. This was a vote supporting independent science and a vote against an industry that has manipulated, coerced and otherwise soiled independent decision-making in Europe and the rest of the world.”

Another dead end inquiry.


$0 for Adani’s coal train. $516,000,000 for renewables
Malcolm Turnbull’s plan to give Adani $1 billion in public cash via NAIF (the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility) could have been the mining giant’s golden ticket to building their monster coal mine.

But Malcolm Turnbull and Adani weren’t ready for the enormous people-powered backlash to this ludicrous handout.

GetUp members and our friends helped turn Adani’s loan into the defining issue of the Queensland State election, resulting in Adani’s handout being scrapped on the new Queensland Government’s first day in power. And over 5,000 GetUp members contacted the board of NAIF, asking them to put Adani’s request in the bin, and invest in renewable energy and other sustainable, long-term industries that won’t wreck our climate.

NAIF appear to have got the message. This week clean energy company Genex announced NAIF are investing $516M in their massive Kidston solar and hydro project — a cutting-edge renewables hub that will create work for 500 people in North Queensland.2

Large-scale renewables like this are creating better jobs for the future while helping preserve our most precious natural resources. The Turnbull Government, however, are still desperately trying to fund Adani’s Reef-killing, water-guzzling coal mine. They’ve changed the rules of Government credit agency EFIC so they can fund Adani through the backdoor by handing over money to the mining giant’s suppliers.3

We’ve landed some mighty blows against Adani, but the fight’s not over yet.

Sign the petition against any public money for Adani.

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A busy, mostly sunny week.

Whirl wind of business is slowing down after 2 farewell dinners.  Sunny days and cool for here, nights.

Best to Grant and Stephen who are relocating permanently to Napier in New Zealand.

Lil gone to Griffith to work in a packing shed for citrus harvest. She lives there in a comfortable shipping container.

Busy week too working slowly up the valley. Good progress as the soil is damp. Eye sight sharpened when an emerging rain forest seedling shows its first leaves. Pencil, white and red cedar sprouting in clusters which a trowel dig transplants further up. Bird life abundant in the higher vine covered canopies.

New growth through the lantana mulch.

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EDO………………needs our support.EDO

eBulletin <edo.nsw@edonsw.org.au>

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Autumn winter work schedule underway.

Busy 3 days with lantana slash pull, layer and mulch.

Its exciting as we head further up the steep banks and discover emerging rain forest seedlings as we go.

Yacon flower…………….Andes Apple……………..delicious eaten direct from the soil. Roasted or chopped into stir fry. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yac%C3%B3n

I have kilos available? Also turmeric, ginger, galangal and arrowroot. Message me.



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