Monthly Archives: September 2011

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Pesticides, soil, all count in GM crops’ effectiveness, finds study

Download the research article http://www.ias.ac.in/currsci/25sep2011/783.pdf New Delhi: Genetically modified (GM) pest-resistant crops may not be the panacea they are made out to be, a new study shows, with specific reference to Bt cotton. The field trial by scientists in Nagpur shows that the soil the plants are grown in matters almost as much as insect-killing genes and pesticide sprays. The finding could significantly increase the amount of money farmers spend in buying and spraying pesticides. It could also mean lower yields than those promised by manufacturers of GM seeds. The study, published in the peer-reviewed journal Current Science, says that the quantity of toxin exuded within a Bt cotton plant […]

World Disaster Report on Food and Hunger 2011

Please find enclosed the World Disaster Report on Food and Hunger 2011 http://www.ifrc.org/PageFiles/89755/Photos/307000-WDR-2011-FINAL-email-1.pdf

Census findings point to decade of rural distress. P. Sainath

For first time since 1921, India’s urban population goes up by more than its rural Is distress migration on a massive scale responsible for one of the most striking findings of Census 2011: that for the first time since 1921, urban India added more numbers to its population in a decade than rural India did? At 833.1 million, India’s rural population today is 90.6 million higher than it was a decade ago. But the urban population is 91 million higher than it was in 2001. The Census cites three possible causes for the urban population to have risen by more than the rural: ‘migration,’ ‘natural increase’ and ‘inclusion of new […]

30 years farming system study, comparing organic with conventional Ag, Rodale Institute USA

The hallmark of a truly sustainable system is its ability to regenerate itself. When it comes to farming, the key to sustainable agriculture is healthy soil, since this is the foundation for present and future growth. Organic farming is far superior to conventional systems when it comes to building, maintaining and replenishing the health of the soil. For soil health alone, organic agriculture is more sustainable than conventional. When one also considers yields, economic viability, energy usage, and human health, it’s clear that organic farming is sustainable, while current conventional practices are not. As we face uncertain and extreme weather patterns, growing scarcity and expense of oil, lack of water, […]

New initiative to popularise organic farming Neha Madaan

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/pune/New-initiative-to-popularise-organic-farming/articleshow/10109905.cms PUNE: In an initiative implemented by city-based Directorate of Horticulture, around 6,000 hectare of land in the state will be brought under organic farming through 60 projects this year. The initiative aims to increase the area under organic farming by 50,000 hectares, apart from reducing production costs and ensuring good quality produce, free of pesticide residue. The budget earmarked for this is Rs 4.31 crore, which includes cost on components such as vermicompost units, biodynamic compost units, organic farming exhibitions, tours and training, among other things. According to D G Bakwad, director, horticulture department, growers, who want to delve into organic farming, want premium price for their produce. “We […]

Do Seed Companies Control GM Crop Research?

ttp://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=do-seed-companies-control-gm-crop-research Do Seed Companies Control GM Crop Research? Scientists must ask corporations for permission before publishing independent research on genetically modified crops. That restriction must end By The Editors | August 13, 2009 | 37 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN Advances in agricultural technology—including, but not limited to, the genetic modification of food crops—have made fields more productive than ever. Farmers grow more crops and feed more people using less land. They are able to use fewer pesticides and to reduce the amount of tilling that leads to erosion. And within the next two years, agritech com­panies plan to introduce advanced crops that are designed to survive heat waves and droughts, resilient characteristics […]

Bt cotton crop washed away in vidarbha-DNA Reports

Bt Cotton Crop washed away in Vidarbha-DNA DNA / Yogesh Pawar / Sunday, September 25, 2011 8:00 IST Step into the fields with your shoes on and you realise why it makes sense to walk barefoot like Rameshwar Golewar of Kolejhari in Kalam tehsil of Yavatmal district in Vidarbha’s suicide country. Your foot slips till the ankle into the soggy clay-like field. “It has rained so much in the last week that my entire crop is ruined,” points out Golewar as he looks around the wilting cotton crop on his 12 acre field. The rains have brought a double whammy. Not only has the rain halted the flowering midway, but […]

PDS: It just works in TN

ALAMU R., The Hindu, Magazine, September 24, 2011 http://www.thehindu.com/arts/magazine/article2475948.ece A combination of political commitment, awareness and better transparency has ensured that the PDS in Tamil Nadu works as intended, ensuring food security for all. Believe it or not, the Public Distribution System (PDS) is working quite successfully in Tamil Nadu — this is one of the main lessons we have learnt from a recent survey of the PDS in Dindigul and Dharmapuri districts. Be it political commitment that lies behind this success, or people’s enlightened awareness, the Fair Price Shops are open and people get their due. From the survey experience, we feel that certain factors have helped to make […]

Out of the bank, into the money-lender’s trap

“Will you come in now?” screams 50-year-old Tanhibai Kale of Ganeshpur village in Jhari Jhamni tehsil of Yavatmal, the heart of Vidarbha’s suicide country. Lightening streaks across the darkened skies, followed by loud thunder. Her drenched nine-year-old grandson Nandu comes in from the downpour and tries to slink in but not before getting two slaps. “Next, you’ll fall ill and we’ll have to go looking for money to treat you,” the matriarch scolds as he whimpers. The crying seems to spark something. “Why don’t we all die? Then all our problems will be over for good,” she says angrily wiping her own tears. It has been a week since her […]

Dust bowl (1930s) USA video footage

The footages from 1930’s dust bowl 8888888888888888 8888888888888888

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