In the News

The Future of Food

Can we always count on access to good food in North America?

Scott James posts on the CSR Blog on September 28th 2010.

Threats to the world’s plants assessed

Habitat loss is the biggest hazard to plant biodiversity.

28th September 2010. Natasha Gilbert reports for Nature News.

Malta food safety notifications down last year.

The Times of Malta’s correspondent Ivan Camilleri reports from Brussels on

September 13th 2010.

Malta’s Food Safety Commission last year informed the EU of 18 notifications on bad food found on the local market and said that in some cases it had to refuse the importation of foodstuffs.

In Malta: Fire Breaks Out in Bahrija Valley

Great damage done to one of Malta’s most precious natural reserve.

The flames that flared up on the 21st August 2010, has ravaged the flora and fauna of this conservation area.

Local authorities are asked to revise our environmental and ecological conservation legal system and enforce ‘Fire Bans’ during times of drought.

Maltese Traditional Agriculture and Crafts Festival

Lejla Mgarrija: 8th August 2010.

The premium Agri-Tourism Event in Malta. This year’s Lejla Mgarrija will be held on Sunday 8th of August, at the Mgarr square, from 7:30pm till late. The event includes display of fruit, vegetables, photography, flower arrangements, wines, decorated carts, and music.

Chernobyl Zone show decline in Biodiversity

Victoria Gill, Science reporter for BBC News writes on July 30th 2010.

The largest wildlife census of its kind conducted in Chernobyl has revealed that mammals are declining in the exclusion zone surrounding the nuclear power plant.

Biodiversity Group Sues BLM to stop controversial Ruby Pipeline

by R.T. Fitch on July 31st 2010

HOUSTON (SFTHH) – The controversial $3 billion gas pipeline from Wyoming to Oregon faces yet another law suit, filed by the Center for Biological Diversity on Friday.

Coffee Farms support biodiversity in some tropical regions reports on July 29th 2010:

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—Shade-grown coffee farms support native bees that help maintain the health of some of the world’s most biodiverse tropical regions, according to a study by a University of Michigan biologist and a colleague at the University of California, Berkeley.

Steady temperatures linked to Biodiversity

According to the conclusions of a new scientific investigation, it would appear that one of the main reasons why such biodiversity is present in tropical regions is the fact that these areas benefit from around-the-year constant temperatures. Experts believe that this is the main factor promoting the emergence of new species, allowing for thousands upon thousands of animals and plants to share the same habitats. The new work sheds doubts on previous ideas, which held that intense sunlight and high temperatures were the main promoters of biodiversity, LiveScience reports.

Biodiversity loss a Significant Business Risk

Environmental Leader website reports on July 13th 2010:

The loss of biodiversity through the extinction of species poses a significant risk to business profits, according to a recent survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Biodiversity Is Climbing The Corporate Agenda

Business leaders in biodiversity-rich developing economies are concerned about losses of ‘natural capital’, a new report highlights.

by Staff Writers
Berlin, Germany (SPX) Jul 14, 2010

US Critical of EU Commissioner’s approach on GMO

3rd  August 2010: The Times of Malta reports

European Commissioner’s position on the future of genetically modified crops is drawing increasingly widespread criticism, casting serious doubts on whether he will manage to get the green light.

Trees a low cost solution to air pollution:

2nd July 2010 reports:

Native woods and trees in urban areas, including gardens, provide haven for wildlife, reduce air pollution, surface run-off and flooding.

Reversing the declining numbers of native trees and woods in cities would provide numerous benefits at ‘relatively little cost’, says a report from the Woodland Trust. Global Fresh Produce and Banana News:

14th June 2010 talks about Organic Farming as a way forward for farmers on the Maltese archipelago.

New farmers market Malta

The Times of Malta reports on 19th July 2010, that a new fruit and vegetable market that will open this October will give customers the opportunity to buy fresh produce directly from farmers, bypassing the Pitkali vegetable market, blamed by different quarters of inflating prices.

Map of Pitkali Vegetable Market

2 Valleys in Mellieha on the natural scheduled sites list.

16th July 2010. The Times of Malta reports.

In a step to safeguard and protect Malta’s biodiversity and natural heritage, the Malta Environment and Planning Authority (MEPA) added two Mellieha valleys to the growing list of natural scheduled sites.

EU member’s right to decide on GMO

14th July 2010. The Times of Malta reports.

Plans to give individual EU member states the right to allow, restrict or ban the cultivation of genetically modified organisms were unveiled by Health and Consumer Affairs Commissioner John Dalli.

France Opposes to Dalli’s GMO Proposals

France said today that is disagreed with proposals by Commissioner John Dalli to open the EU market to GMO cultivation by allowing member states to decide individually on the issue.

Related news here, as the EU seeks a clear way for GMO crops.

A GMO Hot-Potato

7th March 2010: reports

EU approves a genetically modified crop, insists it is safe.

New EU Organic Logo

8th July 2010, The Times of Malta reports that new EU rules on organic food labeling have entered into force. This would include the requirement to display the new EU organic logo, the so-called “Euro-Leaf”, on pre-packaged organic food products that have been produced in any of EU member states and meet the necessary standards.

Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) for Small Islands

Times of Malta reports on 20th June 2010.

Rural development policy has become extremely complex for national authorities to administer and implement, and for farmers to understand.

Agriculture Commissioner rejects fund Cuts

1 July 2010 RTE reports.

European Union Agriculture Commissioner Dacian Ciolos has dismissed calls to lower farm spending in the face of the current debt crisis, insisting it was already low enough.

Report on Growth Potential for EU Agri-sector

RTE news: 19th July 2010

The farm, food and fisheries industry has the potential to grow by up to a third over the next decade, according to a new report.

The report on the medium term development of the sector says that while it faced challenges over the next decade, the most compelling picture emerging was one of opportunity.

Survey: 48% of Irish Say Agriculture Important

31st March 2010, RTE News reports that an EU survey has found that 48% of Irish people believe the agricultural sector is very important to the country’s future, an increase of 10% over the last two years.

Documentary on caring for the sea and its resources

On June 8, World Environment Day, the RAI educational channel screened a documentary about the drying up of the Aral Sea in Russia through over-exploitation and how this has contributed some 10 per cent of dust particles in the air all over the world.

23rd September 2007, RTE News report:

In the UK, the Department of Agriculture has asked for caution after insect-borne Bluetongue Disease was confirmed at a Suffolk farm. This was Britain’s first ever case of disease, which the Telegraph, back then coined as a ‘potential killer in the countryside’. In North Wales it was confirmed in imported cattle.

Alternative Spring Break Volunteer Travel:


Experience biodiversity in South Africa, through volunteer and travel.

Story on Princeton University’s Website Posted on May 7th 2008:

Researchers at Princeton have come up with a method for assessing fish biodiversity from simple data about rainfall and river networks. This provides for better prediction of the effects of climate change and the ecological impact of man-made structures like dams.

3 Responses to In the News

  1. Philip Mizzi says:

    Interesting & Informative. Facts one should know…an eye opener.

  2. Censor Fortress says:

    This week, all European Eyes will be on EU Commissioner John Dalli as he officially presents new proposals to facilitate the introduction of more genetically modified (GM) crops into the EU.

    What say that GMOs will be introduced to Malta? This would have massive repercussions to the Maltese Fauna and Flora!! So, as much as the Maltese have the advantage to enjoy freshly grown food, our politicians are ignoring what’s good for us health wise and moving on to the industrial grown crop as if business is more important the healthy living of the Europeans.

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