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What’s Up in Paris?

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Touch the Soil News #520 Like other global metropolitan areas, Paris is a concrete Jungle. The city proper has a population of 2.3 million. However, the greening bug has hit the city in part thanks to its Mayor – Anne Hidalgo. The Paris city council passed a bold move to invite citizens to come forth with ideas to green (including growing food) on the city’s public places. The plan is to encourage biodiversity and vegetation as much as possible in all possible places – downtown, workplace or in one’s neighborhood. In exchange for accessing public places for greening the city, citizen-gardeners will sign a Charter of re-vegetation. The Charter is…

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France Fires a Shot at the World’s Insecticide Industry

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Touch the Soil News #346 Not a household word, but the term neonicotinoid is the name for a specific neuro-active chemical that kills insects – including bees. So without insects, birds die, bees die and a large portion of food is in peril for lack of pollinating. The world’s largest manufacturers and sellers of neonicotinoids include Bayer CropScience and Syngenta. In the U.S., approximately 95 percent of all corn and canola crops and the majority of cotton, sorghum and sugar beets and half of all soybeans were treated with this chemical. In addition, there has been heavy use on fruits and vegetables including apples, cherries, peaches, oranges, berries, leafy greens,…

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