February 6, 2023

We hope the first stretch of 2023 is going smoothly for you all! 

As mentioned in last month's newsletter, the 2023 Maryland General Assembly, currently in session, is considering a Senate and House bill, SB158/HB319, that would require all pesticides registered in our state for sales and use -- to be free of the "forever chemicals" PFAS. Recent research and testing has found PFAS at shockingly high levels in pesticides. As a lead scientist on this issue recently stated, "If the intent was to spread PFAS contamination across the globe, there would be few more effective methods than lacing pesticides with PFAS." 

PFAS are known as “forever chemicals”— because they do not break down in the environment. These toxic products have already made their way into our water systems, including the Chesapeake Bay and our drinking water, our soil, our food, and consequently, into our bodies.

Take a look at this 'easy to review' factsheet for more information about the health impacts and more.

We need everyone's help to overcome the misinformation legislators are being targeted with by agro-chemical lobbyists. It really takes a village...Please make your voice heard in the next few days to make the impact needed! Let your legislators know you support protecting the health of Marylanders, our waterways, pollinators and -- really all life -- from the adverse impacts caused by PFAS exposure -- made worse by combining PFAS with already toxic pesticides.

For additional information on this campaign, see our Op Ed under PFAS below and farmer Mike Tabor's Letter to the Editor in the Baltimore Sun

Our success these past few years in passing critical pesticide-related state laws are largely made possible by this community -- it is a grassroots effort! Please continue to assist us by first and foremost making your voice heard and to whatever level you can...making a donation to help fund this work. 

Help us eliminate PFAS in pesticides in Maryland! 

Every dollar you donate at this time will be matched by a concerned funder. Thank you!

Vote With Your Wallet, Vote With Your Fork!  GO Organic! How to go organic in all you do – even on a budget! Learn more
MOM's Organic Market is introducing new, sustainable, and organic protein sources via edible insects, joining a broader trend towards more sustainable protein. Learn more

Check out this scorecard from Cornucopia that details the best organic cereal sources. The Cornucopia Institute provides needed information to family farmers, consumers, and other stakeholders in the good food movement. Learn more

Also, check out the rest of the scorecards offered, including eggs, snack bars, soy, and more!

Our friends at Treehugger have yet another list of great sustainability and organic related products - this time with the top 8 compost bins of 2023. Learn more
The vegan industry is projected to double in size by 2027, making sustainable eating easier than ever before as the sector paves the way “for a global transition to a much more just, safe & sustainable food system.”  Learn more
  NEWS and VIEWS  
 News on PFAS, aka Forever Chemicals
MD Pesticide Education Network's Board member, Dr. Anna Rule & Program Director Bonnie Raindrop's Maryland Matters Op Ed calls for passage of a 2023 Maryland bill restricting sales & use of PFAS- containing pesticides (SB 158) Learn more
Michael Tabor, a sustainable farmer upstream from Baltimore, asks the new secretary of agriculture to remain sensitive to the issues of PFAS and endocrine-disrupting chemicals in a new LTE published in the Baltimore Sun. Learn more
The cost of these PFAS pollutants has become clearer in recent years as scientists uncover links to weakened immune systems, cancers, cholesterol, and poor vaccination response. In the United States alone, by one measure, the tally in medical care costs and lost productivity from PFAS exposure linked to 5 medical conditions adds up to at least $5.5 billion annually.  Learn more
Other recent stories/events
Endocrine disruptors, commonly found in pesticides and processed foods and drink, have been linked to “obesity, insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes, PCOS, gestational diabetes, reduced birthweight, reduced semen quality, endometriosis and breast or prostate cancer”, and can be especially harmful when exposed during puberty. To learn more, read this article from Yahoo: Learn more
EPA has failed - yet again - to test for and regulate pesticides with endocrine-disrupting qualities & should be ordered to do so by a court, according to a new lawsuit from the Center for Food Safety Learn more
District of Columbia is suing the chemical manufacturer Velsicol for damages caused by its production of the toxic insecticide chlordane over 30 years after it was banned, as it still contaminates homes, schools, yards, private wells and waterways all throughout the Potomac River watershed.  Learn more
Agrochemical application on flowers can modify behavior in pollinators like bees  –  pollinators are less likely to land on flowers sprayed with fertilizers or pesticides due to how it interferes with the flowers electrical field. Learn more
Harvard School of Public Health researchers find global pollinator losses are so severe they are causing a half-million early deaths of people annually by reducing the amount of healthy foods available to communities. Learn more
  LET'S GET SERIOUS ABOUT SOIL, food security & climate change--yes, they're related!  
Scientists at the University of Wisconsin are studying the flow of PFAS (AKA “Forever Chemicals”) through the ground, so that these harmful contaminants can be tracked and affected communities can be alerted and protected, and so that PFAS spills in the soil can be cleaned up. Learn more
Farmers are scaling up regenerative grazing practices in Maryland, Pennsylvania, & beyond—and it could simultaneously help clean up Chesapeake Bay, mitigate climate change & save small family farms. Learn more

Please help support our work to protect our babies, bees, and the Bay!