The Level of Pesticide Use by GMO Companies on Kaua'i is Unprecedented.
From 2010-2012 approximately 18 tons per year of "Restricted Use" Pesticides have been used on Kaua'i lands. These figures are the highly concentrated, pre-dilution amounts that can generate sprayable pesticide by factors as high as 1:80 or more. (Sources: Restricted Use Pesticides Sold on Kaua'i - 2010-2012; See, for example, the dilution rate for the restricted use pesticide Lorsban Advanced).
Since GE testing began, over 3,000 permits have been granted by USDA for field trials of GE crops in Hawai’i, more than any other state in the nation. In 2012 alone, there were 160 such permits issued on 740 sites. (Source: http://www.isb.vt.edu/locations-by-years.aspx) BASF, Dow, Pioneer DuPont, Monsanto, and Syngenta are using the Hawaiian islands as test sites for their genetically engineered crops and pesticides.
Over the past three years, Pioneer (a subsidiary of DuPont) applied pesticides on their west Kaua'i fields 67% of all days. Pioneer is one of four GMO companies testing seed and spraying pesticides on a daily basis in west Kaua'i. (Source: Civil Case # 11-1-0356 Waimea Residents v. Pioneer Hi-Bred International et al., Fifth Circuit Court, State of Hawaii, December 13, 2011, Fn 5).
Syngenta, BASF, Pioneer DuPont and Dow occupy nearly all of the leased agricultural lands in west Kaua'i - over 12,000 acres in close proximity to schools, residences, churches, and hospitals. (Source: Public document requests: Kaua'i County Tax Assessor and Hawaii Department of Agriculture).
GMO activities alone accounted for an increase in pesticide use by an estimated 404 million pounds between 1996 and 2011, or about 7% of total pesticide use. Without GMO activity, our communities would have experienced 404 million pounds less of pesticides during that period. (Benbrook: Impacts of Genetically Engineered Crops on Pesticide Use in the U.S. -- The First Sixteen Years, based on USDA data, 2012).
If new genetically engineered forms of corn and soybeans tolerant of 2,4-D are approved, the volume of 2,4-D sprayed could drive herbicide usage upward by another approximate 50%. (Benbrook: Impacts of Genetically Engineered Crops on Pesticide Use in the U.S. -- The First Sixteen Years, based on USDA data, 2012).
Children Are More Vulnerable to the Health Impacts of Pesticides.
A recent study has linked parental exposure to pesticides with an increased risk of brain cancer in children. The study found that parental exposures before the child’s conception and during gestation increases the risk of child cancer. (Source: Parental occupational exposure to pesticides as risk factor for brain tumors in children and young adults: A systematic review and meta-analysis, Van Maele-Fabry, Hoet, Lison; Louvain Center for Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, 2013).
Generations In Jeopardy: How Pesticides are Undermining our Children's Health and Intelligence (2013, Kristen Schafer and Emily Marquez: Pesticide Action Network) reports that:
Neurotoxic pesticides are clearly implicated as contributors to the rising rates of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism, widespread declines in IQ and other measures of cognitive function.
Pesticide exposure contributes to a number of increasingly common health outcomes for children, including cancer, birth defects and early puberty. Evidence of links to certain childhood cancers is particularly strong.
Emerging science suggests that pesticides may be important contributors to the current epidemic of childhood asthma, obesity and diabetes.
Extremely low levels of pesticide exposure can cause significant health harms, particularly during pregnancy and early childhood.
Kaua'i Families Are Suffering from Pesticide Exposure.
In December 13, 2011 residents of the west Kaua'i town of Waimea filed suit against Pioneer Hi-Bred International (a DuPont affiliate) citing multiple violations of law in pesticide and land management of Pioneer's test corn fields upwind of residential homes and schools.
Huffington Post: GMO Pesticides in Kauai: The Poisoning of Paradise (7/2/13)
Reports on GMO's Generally
Why GMO's Do Not Feed the World:
Failure to Yield: Evaluating the Yield of Genetically Engineered Crops (Union of Concerned Scientists, 2009).