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Originally published June 21 2014

Agricultural chemical companies transform Kaua'i from paradise to toxic nightmare

by L.J. Devon, Staff Writer

(NaturalNews) The colors of nature really stand out in the paradise of Kaua'i, Hawai'i. Sandy beaches embrace the waves of crystal blue water rushing ashore. The ocean waves nip peacefully at the base of the luscious, volcanic mountains, kissing the landscape in a fusion of awe and inspiration.

But just beyond the natural beauty, harmony and flow is a new wave of chemical destruction ravaging the soil, dusting through the air. The island has recently become a test field for some of the biggest names in agriculture, who are now moving stealthily onto the island and threatening the very peace and the nourishment of the soils.

Pesticide manufacturers conducting field tests on Kaua'i, increasing pesticide use

Four transnational agribusinesses are indeed ravaging the land as they experiment with their genetically altered crops and mass application of pesticides. Syngenta, BASF Plant Science, DuPont Pioneer and Dow AgroSciences have transformed part of the island into a synthetic wasteland, a toxic chemical environment.

With pesticides salivating from their greedy fangs, these vampire chemical companies are sucking the life blood right out of the beautiful soil and landscape of Kaua'i. In fact, their usage of "restricted use pesticides" in Kaua'i tops the nation, unleashing alachlor, atrazine, chlorpyrifos, methomyl, metolachlor, permethrin and paraquat onto the land.

After comparing 2009 pesticide usage data from a US Geological Survey database with amounts registered with the Hawai'i Department of Agriculture, it was found out that Kaua'i was being inundated with higher concentrations of pesticides than any other region in the US.

In fact, the amount of pesticides being blasted on the island is greater than amounts used in California and over 10 times greater than the national average!

The nerve of these pesticide manufacturers is downright chilling. To conduct such heinous environmental experiments on such a tranquil island without batting an eye is downright appalling and void of soul.

Strangely, the increased pesticide usage has the EPA's stamp of approval and is supervised by the USDA. The government branches are not providing accountability but are instead enabling environmental experiments, turning a blind eye to consequences of the pesticide applications.

Kaua'i County Council enacts Ordinance 960 to protect the people of the island

As the chemicals are blasted into the land at unprecedented rates, the healing environment of the island is being transformed into a diseased swamp, since these pesticides have been linked to cancers and cognitive disorders in children.

To combat the madness, the Kaua'i County Council enacted the new Ordinance 960 last autumn. The law is the first of its kind regulating the cultivation of existing GMO crops. It quickly received backlash from the big pesticide manufacturers.

Kaua'i County is taking the job of accountability upon themselves, after realizing that the federal "protection" agencies are ignoring the health impacts of these ramped-up pesticide field tests. They contend that the corporations are being allowed to roam freely for profit, while putting human livelihood at risk.

In Ordinance 960, a no-spray buffer was sanctioned around schools and other buildings where people live, work or receive medical care. The ordinance does not ban the genetically modified crops from the island but keeps the pesticides out of close proximity to people.

The people of the island are hoping to take the ordinance a step further and ban all GMO cultivation form the island until third-party safety tests on the pesticides can prove that the chemicals pose no harm to human health.

One resident of the island, Klayton Kubo, who lives on the east end of Waimea, reports on what he calls "poison valley." He often has to wash off his window screens when they become clogged up with red pesticide dust. He can smell the chemical odors and toxic vapors emanating from the test fields.

Pesticide manufacturers bracing for a fight

With deep pockets and arrogant clout, the big agribusinesses have teamed up. In January 2014, they filed suit against Ordinance 960. A ruling is expected to take place in August. The chemical conglomerates are already preparing for a political fight and are beginning to support a slate of GMO-friendly candidates for the November election.

Gary Hooser, author of Ordinance 960, and a member of the Kaua'i County Council sees right through big agribusinesses tactics and is prepared to take them on: "Kaua'i is Ground Zero for the testing of GMO crops. It is also Ground Zero for democracy in action."

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