Paul Tullis's Grim Tidings

Bitter musings on politics and policy

Monsanto's version of environmental stewardship

with 3 comments

The company whose public radio spots claim it helps the environment has been illegally dumping heavy metals in Idaho:

Federal regulators said Thursday an Idaho mine that Monsanto Co. depends on to make its Roundup weed killer has violated federal and state water quality laws almost since it opened, sending selenium and other heavy metals into the region’s waterways.

Apparently the Bureau of Land Management, which with the EPA is part of the Dept. of Interior, has been somewhat complicit in this:

…the mine has been unable to stop discharges of heavy metal-laden water from a waste dump, despite BLM conclusions nearly a decade ago that precautions wouldn’t “allow selenium or other contaminants to migrate…”

This has real implications for the lives of animals and the welfare of ranchers in the area:

In the 1990s, sheep and horses died from selenium poisoning related to mining elsewhere in southeastern Idaho’s rich phosphate belt.

Read more about Monsanto’s ugly history here.

EPA says Monsanto mine violates law.

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Written by ptullis

June 29, 2009 at 4:38 pm

3 Responses

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  1. Monsanto’s been on sort of a bender of embarrassing publicity for it’s not-so-green way: the big bully of Food Inc., the greenwashing, and last week’s U.S. Appeals Court ruling against its alfafa seeds. (I just happened to post on this on Cult of Green http://cultofgreen.com/2009/06/29/monsanto-image-takes-a-beating/)

    kenedelstein

    June 29, 2009 at 5:33 pm

  2. And the mining companies say that Pebble Mine will be clean (once it’s built; pray, never). Where’s the precedent to trust them on their schemes and promises to retain and secure the toxic waste major operations?

    Scott Bowen

    June 29, 2009 at 10:20 pm

  3. That is such a great point! Why do they get the benefit of the doubt? In Europe companies have to prove the safety of products before they’re introduced; here, we sue after the damage is done.

    Paul Tullis

    June 30, 2009 at 2:14 pm


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