Reprinted from the pages of the PPJ Gazette
“If Callie Hendrickson is so worried about conservation, why didn’t she bust a gut talking about the “degraded resources for all” caused by Monsanto and the other sponsors of the NACD annual meeting?”
When representatives of Conservation Districts with ties to Monsanto attended the last Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board meeting, they not only pushed for the roundup of wild horses & burros, they pushed to have the wild horses & burros sold for slaughter.
Wait a minute, these organizations have the word “conservation” in their titles, don’t they? So what’s going on?
Right before the last Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board meeting in Reno, theNational Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) had their big annual meeting in Las Vegas. The NACD meeting was sponsored by Monsanto, Bayer Crop Science, DuPont, Sygenta and Pioneer, the biggest producers of thegenetically engineered crops on the planet.
At NACD’s meeting, Monsanto sponsored a radio broadcast on Agritalk and NACD President Gene Schmidt and First Vice President Earl Garber were interviewed. (So was Rick Cole, Director of Weed Resistance for Monsanto.)
For NACD’s live auction, Monsanto donated four 30-gallon containers of Roundup Power Max.
At the NACD meeting, Callie Hendrickson, appointed by Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar to represent the general public (is Monsanto the general public?) on the National Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board, gave a presentation. She madeunsubstantiated claims regarding wild horses & burros, including the statement that wild horses “degraded resources for all.”
If Callie is so worried about conservation, why didn’t she bust a gut talking about the “degraded resources for all” caused by Monsanto and the other sponsors of the NACD annual meeting?
In 1995, Monsanto ranked fifth among U.S. corporations in EPA’s Toxic Release Inventory, having discharged 37 million pounds of toxic chemicals into the air, land, water and underground.
In Anniston, Alabama, “for nearly 40 years, while producing the now-banned industrial coolants known a PCBs at a local factory, Monsanto Co. routinely discharged toxic waste into a west Anniston creek and dumped millions of pounds of PCBs into oozing open-pit landfills.”
In Sauget (originally named Monsanto), Illinois, near the Mississippi River, the Monsanto plant was the nation’s largest producer of PCBs. Production of PCBs was banned in 1977, but they remained part of a “noxious chemical stew” at an EPA Superfund site in Sauget.
In a Post-Gazette story, Richard Karl, director of the EPA’s Superfund Division, Region 5 stated: “It’s basically a soup of different chemicals,” including PCBs, benzene, toluene, and dioxin and organic solvents. Heavy-metal pollutants include cadmium, silver, selenium and zinc. So far, the agency has spent tens of millions of dollars to clean up the area.”
Times Beach, Missouri was found in 1982 to be so thoroughly contaminated with dioxin, a by-product of PCB manufacturing, that the government ordered it evacuated. Dioxins are endocrine and immune system disruptors, cause congenital birth defects, reproductive and developmental problems, and increase the incidence of cancer, heart disease and diabetes in laboratory animals.
It seems the National Association of Conservation Districts apparently aligns itself proudly with, and has no problems taking donations from, this corporation.
What about NACD’s other sponsors?
Was No. 4 on a Mother Jones list of the Top 20 polluters of 2010 for dumping over 5,000,000 pounds of toxic chemicals into New Jersey and Delaware waterways.
Is a DuPont company, and a lawsuit was filed against this company in Hawaii this year by Waimea residents. The suit claims that Pioneer has failed to control dust, and is “transporting toxic chemicals used on a daily basis and that Pioneer Hi-Bred is conducting open-air testing of genetically modified crops at its Waimea Research Center.” It claims “
fugitive airborne dust exposure from restricted-use pesticides presents unreasonable environmental risks including human health, the Waimea River, the coastline and coral reef.”
Was at the center of a recent class-action lawsuit because hundreds of community water systems across the United States were contaminated by the company’s atrazine weed killer. For decades, communities in at least 45 states had their water supply contaminated by atrazine and had to spend millions of dollars to filter out the poison.
Bayer Crop Science
Responsible for the contamination of the U.S. long grain rice supply in 2006 with their experimental and unapproved genetically modified Liberty Link variety that had not received approval for human consumption.
And since we’re on the subject of environmental contamination,
“has Callie written any letters protesting the 2, 4-D that the BLM is spraying, including planned spraying for the Desatoya Mountains Habitat Resiliency, Health & Restoration Project? ”
Yet, Callie and these Conservation Districts focus blame on wild horses & burros for “degrading the resources.” More inaccuracies about wild horses & burros were published in NACD’s newletter, The Resource.
There are about 3,000 conservation districts in the U.S., and since they’re established under state law, they vary in what they’re called and how they’re funded. There are elected and appointed positions on governing boards. Their partners include the Department of Interior (BLM, Bureau of Reclamation, Fish & Wildlife Service) and USDA (Forest Service, Farm Service Agency).
Considering this, keep an eye on the ball for appointed officials on various Boards of Directors, with overlapping duties, like Callie Hendrickson.
Callie is the Executive Director for the White River Conservation District in Colorado. She has also served as the Vice President of the National Association of Conservation Districts, and was a registered lobbyist in Colorado for the Colorado Association of Conservation Districts.
After the big NACD annual meeting in Las Vegas, Callie went up to Reno and took her seat for the first time on the Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board. Gary Moyer and Neil Brennan, who are on the Board of Supervisors for the White River Conservation District and work with Callie, came to this meeting. (Gary Moyer is also on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Conservation Districts and the Colorado Association of Conservation Districts). Chris Freeman was there to represent the NACD.
They all pushed for the roundup and slaughter of wild horses & burros.
The Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board, but the BLM, can claim they are listening to the public. But, there is more than just an appearance of undue influence. ThereIS undue influence. These people are on the Boards of Directors of Associationspartnering with the BLM. They have Memorandums of Understanding toSUPPORT each other’s interests. Appointed advisory boards are gaining more and more influence over land use decisions. Meanwhile, the BLM continues to turn a deaf ear to public outcry by American taxpayers and acts with impunity.
Things get a little more interesting
The White River and Douglas Creek Conservation Districts own and operate theUpper Colorado Environmental Plant Center in Meeker, Colorado.
Gary Moyer and Neil Brennan are on the Board of Directors.
The USDA states about this plant center “National interest in significant deposits of oil-bearing shales, the economical recovery of that oil, and the successful revegetation of the disturbed sites related to oil extraction were the primary factors leading to the establishment of the Center. The Center is located adjacent to the world’s largest known deposit of these oil bearing shales.”
So, looking at vast areas of land being drilled, there will be a big need for “revegetation” and for the reclamation of these areas in the future. The White River Conservation District buys trees to resell to producers (would this be the oil companies?) in that area. I wonder if the Conservation District will buy any trees from White River Trees in Meeker, CO, owned by Gary Moyer.
This area is also near Herd Management Areas where the BLM has been pushing, for years, to completely remove wild horses. While the BLM continues a shell game driving the extinction of wild horses & burros in the very near future, we see wolves in sheep’s clothing hiding behind the words conservation and environment.
To learn more: