Before we get to the update on the 2014 Farm Bill, there is some good news to report from around the United States and Ireland:
Latest Fluoride-Free Victories:
- Wellington, Florida – Council members voted 3-2 on January 28 to end fourteen years of fluoridation. The decision came after hours of debate and testimony from medical experts and residents. Ultimately, a majority of councilors agreed that citizens shouldn’t be forced to ingest an unnecessary chemical in the public drinking water supply. While fluoridation has ended for now in Wellington, a number of pro-fluoride dentists from the region are working to overturn the council’s vote with the help of the Palm Beach Post newspaper.
- Amherst County, Virginia – The Service Authority Board voted 3-2 in January to discontinue fluoridation due to conflicting opinions on what levels of fluoride really are “optimal.” Several Board Supervisors felt that the additive was unnecessary and a waste of resources. The board is currently being attacked for their decision by the local newspaper and some regional dentists and health officials.
- Woodsville, Oregon – In January the Woodsville City Council considered the idea of adding fluoride to the drinking water. Prior to making a decision the council polled the residents and the response was overwhelming with 100% of respondents voting no to fluoridation. According to the City Administrator, “what public response we had was overwhelmingly negative,” which resulted in the council ending their fluoridation discussions. Despite the unanimous vote from residents in opposition, the Oregonian newspaper (which endorsed efforts to fluoridation Portland) wrote a misleading article on the vote entitled, “Wood Village Leaders Give Up on Fluoride After Vocal, If Small, Opposition From Residents.”
- Sebastopol, California – City Councilors voted unanimously (5-0) on February 4 to oppose the fluoridation of Sonoma County’s drinking water. Even though the city would not be directly affected by fluoridation in the county, there was a concern that fluoride could eventually leach into their groundwater from surrounding communities putting residents at risk.
- Bantry, Ireland – Town Councilors voted unanimously to call for an immediate end to fluoridation throughout Ireland. Skibbereen and Clonakitty also passed similar motions last year. Support for this historic vote was provided by the local group West Cork Fluoride Free.
Sulfuryl Fluoride – Farm Bill Update
On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate voted 68-32 to pass the Agricultural Act of 2014, also known as the “Farm Bill.” Today, President Obama signed the bill into law. As we explained before, the following language, which reverses the EPA’s proposed phase-out of the neurotoxic fumigant sulfuryl fluoride, was added at the eleventh hour in conference committee last week after intense lobbying by the National Pest Management Association and Dow AgroSciences:
Agricultural Act of 2014 – Sec. 10015 Regulation of sulfuryl fluoride.
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency shall exclude non-pesticideal sources of fluoride from any aggregate exposure assessment required under section 408 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 346a) when assessing tolerances associated with residues from the pesticide. (PAGE 806 at http://www.agri-pulse.com/
Legislative leaders in the Senate quickly scheduled a vote on the 1,000 page bill only days after the House of Representatives voted 251-166 in favor of the legislation (see FAN’s press release / see Beyond Pesticide’s press release).
The U.S. will now remain one of only two countries in the world that allows this highly toxic fumigant to be sprayed directly on food, leaving unsafe levels of fluoride residue to be eaten by consumers and putting infants and children at risk of exceeding the EPA’s own reference dose for fluoride.
Please take a few moments to use our automated system to send a letter to the editor of your local newspaper educating your neighbors about the terrible sulfuryl fluoride provision in the farm bill. We should at least warn everyone, and use this opportunity to call for an end to fluoridation:
International Fluoride-Free Teleconference
Register today for this month’s International Fluoride Free Teleconference. The call will be this Sunday, February 9 at 5pm (eastern time), and will be on the issue of Infant Exposure to Fluoride. Dr. David Kennedy and Dr. Bill Osmunson will cover the latest science and research on fluoride’s impact on infants, and I will explain how you can take action to implement infant warnings in your community.
To learn more about fluoride’s impact on our most vulnerable citizens, please visit our web page on infant exposure. To hear directly from the experts, please join us on the call this Sunday by clicking the link below:
On Monday, January 27, legendary folk-artist and activist Peter “Pete” Seeger passed away at the age of 94. While many are familiar with Seeger’s songs and involvement in the civil rights and anti-war campaigns of the 60’s, less are aware of his opposition to fluoridation. Pete Seeger was a FAN member and signer of our Statement to Congress calling for an end to fluoridation in the U.S.
He was an artist, a leader, a champion for social change, and an opponent to fluoridation. He will be missed.
Fluoride Action Network
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