|US: General Electric workers sue Monsanto over PCBs|
by Carey Gillam, Reuters
January 4th, 2006
More than 500 General Electric Co. employees have sued Monsanto Co. along with two related companies, claiming they were exposed to toxic chemicals manufactured for decades by Monsanto, the company said Wednesday.
|US: F.D.A. Puts Restrictions on Guidant |
by Vikas Bajaj, The New York Times
December 28th, 2005
The Food and Drug Administration yesterday released a warning letter it sent to the Guidant Corporation, restricting the ability of the company to win approval for some new medical products. In the letter, sent a week ago, the agency said Guidant, the heart device maker, had not fully responded to its concerns about manufacturing procedures at the company's biggest plant.
|US: Lilly Pleads Guilty to Misdemeanor Violation|
December 21st, 2005
Eli Lilly and Co. said on Wednesday it will plead guilty to a misdemeanor violation as part of a settlement with the government over its marketing and promotional practices for an osteoporosis drug.
|AFRICA: Death By Dilution|
by Robert Cockburn, American Prospect
December 20th, 2005
When fakes of a GlaxoSmithKline anti-malarial drug turned up in Africa, authorities assumed the drug giant would want to know. Instead, they learned about a huge, evil trade in fake drugs -- and about an industry that doesn’t want the truth to get out.
|INDIA: Testing Drugs on India's Poor |
by Scott Carney, Wired
December 19th, 2005
Multinational corporations are riding high on the trend toward globalization by taking advantage of India's educated work force and deep poverty to turn South Asia into the world's largest clinical-testing petri dish.
|UK: Tobacco giants face smuggling fines|
by Tom McGhie and Dan Atkinson, Financial Mail
December 18th, 2005
Giant tobacco firms face punishing fines of more than £350m a year if they fail to help squash a smuggling racket that costs the Treasury billions in lost revenue.
|US: Court reverses Philip Morris verdict|
by Brad Dorfman, Reuters
December 15th, 2005
The Illinois Supreme Court on Thursday reversed a $10.1 billion verdict against Philip Morris USA, ordering a lower court to dismiss the case in which the company was accused of defrauding customers into thinking "light" cigarettes were safer than regular ones.
|US: DuPont fined more than $10M over Teflon|
by Randall Chase, Associated Press
December 14th, 2005
DuPont Co. has agreed to pay $10.25 million in fines and $6.25 million for environmental projects to settle allegations by the Environmental Protection Agency that the company hid information about the dangers of a toxic chemical used to make the non-stick coating Teflon, officials said Wednesday.
|US: Big Tobacco Outspends Stop-Smoking Programs 28 to 1 |
Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
November 30th, 2005
There is a growing gap between the inadequate amounts states are spending on tobacco prevention programs and the record sums the tobacco companies are spending to market cigarettes and other tobacco products, putting at risk the nation's progress in reducing youth smoking, according to a report released today by a coalition of public health organizations.
|US: EPA, DuPont in Settlement Over Chemical|
The Associated Press
November 29th, 2005
Federal regulators have reached an agreement with DuPont to settle allegations the company hid information about the dangers of a toxic chemical known as C8 used in the manufacture of Teflon.
|US: Engineer: DuPont hid facts about paper coating|
by Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY
November 16th, 2005
A former engineer for the DuPont company has accused his ex-employer of concealing test results almost two decades ago that showed toxic chemicals leaching out of a paper coating used to give grease resistance to microwave popcorn bags, fast food and candy wrappers, and pizza box liners.
|INDIA: Health Minister: 'Coke Plant Will Not Be Allowed to Function' |
October 25th, 2005
Health Minister K.K. Ramachandran on Monday said the Government "would not allow the bottling plant of Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Pvt. Ltd. at Plachimada to reopen against the will of the people." (Mr. Ramachandran is the first Minister to have visited Plachimada where the local people have been waging an agitation for the last three years demanding the closure of the company for allegedly exploiting the groundwater, leading to shortage of water for drinking and irrigation purposes.)
|ECUADOR: Amazon Indians say Texaco left damage|
by Gonzalo Solano, Associated Press
October 20th, 2005
About 50 Cofan Indians, some holding handkerchiefs over their faces to fend off an acrid chemical stench, gathered around two contaminated open pits they say were left behind and never adequately cleaned up by the former Texaco Corp.
|US: Smoking the fast-food industry: Fight against warning labels reminiscent of tobacco fray|
by Thomas Kostigen, MarketWatch
October 6th, 2005
The state of California is suing nine top food manufacturers, including Burger King, Heinz and McDonald's, over their reluctance to issue warnings that some of their snacks could contain the potentially cancer-causing chemical acrylamide.
Acrylamide was found to be linked to cancer in 2002. Then, the Swedish Food Administration reported high levels of it in carbohydrate-rich foods, such as french fries and potato chips, cooked at high temperatures. Studies indicated the chemical caused cancer in rats.
|US: F.D.A. Had Report of Short Circuit in Heart Devices|
by Barry Meier, The New York Times
September 12th, 2005
Months before the Food and Drug Administration issued a safety alert in June about problems with Guidant Corporation heart devices, the agency received a report from the company showing that some of those units were short-circuiting, agency records obtained by The New York Times show.
|US: Vioxx Verdict Raises Profile of Texas Lawyer|
by Alex Berenson, The New York Times
August 22nd, 2005
Merck is found liable for the death of Robert C. Ernst, who died in 2001 after taking Merck's painkiller Vioxx for eight months. The jury awarded $253.5 million to Carol Ernst, Mr. Ernst's widow and Mr. Lanier's client, in one of the largest damage awards ever to a single plaintiff.
|US: Drug Industry Creates Voluntary Ad Guidelines|
by Jennifer Corbett Dooren, Dow Jones
August 3rd, 2005
Responding to increased criticism from Congress, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, or PhRMA, announced a set of voluntary guidelines aimed at governing the way drugs are advertised to consumers.
|US: Wal-Mart Is Focal Point Of Democrats' Health Bill|
by By Amy Joyce, Washington Post
June 23rd, 2005
Several congressional Democrats introduced a bill that would force states to report the names of companies that have 50 or more employees who receive government-funded health care, an effort to pressure Wal-Mart Stores Inc. in particular to improve employee health coverage.
|NICARAGUA: Chiquita's Children
by By Nicolas Bérubé and Benoit Aquin, In These Times
May 23rd, 2005
In the ’70s and ’80s, the banana companies Dole, Del Monte and Chiquita used a carcinogenic pesticide, Nemagon, to protect their crops in Nicaragua. Today, the men and women who worked on those plantations suffer from incurable illnesses. Their children are deformed. The companies feign innocence.
|WORLD: The Truth about McDonald's and Children|
by by Morgan Spurlock, Independent
May 22nd, 2005
Obesity rates in American children remained stable throughout the 1960s, but they began to climb in the 1970s. In the past 20 years, the rate of obesity has doubled in children and trebled in teenagers. Kids are starting to clock in as obese as early as the age of two. If we find that surprising, we shouldn't.
|US: Is Fast Food Just What the Doctor Ordered?
by Melanie Warner, New York Times
May 2nd, 2005
In the last two years, at least two dozen leading nutrition scientists and experts have started working for large food companies, either as consultants or as members of health advisory boards. Most do not directly promote products, though Dr. Arthur Agatston, a practicing cardiologist and author of "The South Beach Diet," has a licensing deal with Kraft Foods to sell a line of South Beach foods, which are appearing on supermarket shelves this month.
|LATIN AMERICA: AIDS Patients See Life, Death Issues in Trade Pact
by Marla Dickerson and Evelyn Iritani, LA Times
April 22nd, 2005
Under CAFTA American pharmaceutical giants would gain a five-year edge on the development of new drugs by low-cost competitors. Generic versions of name-brand drugs are the main weapon for battling the AIDS pandemic in the developing world.
|US: Jury Rules for Philip Morris|
by Myron Levin, LA Times
April 22nd, 2005
A Moreno Valley man didn't prove that smoking caused his lung cancer, the panel decides after less than three hours of deliberations.
|LATIN AMERICA: New Gold Rush Runs into Opposition
by Mark Stevenson, Associated Press
April 12th, 2005
A surge in world gold prices is attracting U.S. and Canadian companies eager for another crack at the Latin American lodes that once enriched the Old World. But their modern-day methods -- strip mines and cyanide-based refining -- are meeting fierce resistance.
|SOUTH AFRICA: Durban's Poor Fight For Clean Air |
by Grant Clark, BBC News
December 14th, 2004
If a poor community believes it is being poisoned, how can it find out if its fears are justified? Grant Clark visits South Durban, where outdated government legislation has left locals fighting their own battle for the truth.
|USA: Drug Companies Pushing ADHD Drugs for Children|
by Kelly Hearn, Alternet
November 29th, 2004
As public scrutiny of drug companies grows, so do questions about what critics say is a vast over-prescribing of MPH, especially as more adults are taking other MPH-based medicines such as Concerta. Many in and outside the scientific community suspect the dubious marketing tactics of big drug money have fueled the spiraled use of MPH.
|US: How Schering Manipulated Drug Prices And Medicaid
New York Times
July 31st, 2004
$345.5 million settlement by Schering-Plough to resolve a government Medicaid investigation provides a detailed glimpse into how drug companies can manipulate prices to overcharge state and federal programs.
|US: A Record Year for Shareholder Activism|
by G. Jeffrey MacDonald, Christian Science Monitor
June 28th, 2004
Question: What single force can get Tyco International to strive for cleaner emissions, inspire PepsiCo to study the impact of AIDS in developing nations, and even get Merck & Co. to declare its intentions to not manufacture an abortion pill? Answer: shareholders.
|US: Want Cancer With That?
by Starre Vartan, AlterNet
June 1st, 2004
Carbs have been taking a beating lately, and the news isn't getting any better. A pending lawsuit filed against fast food mega-corps McDonald's and Burger King may leave one of America's most beloved junk foods with a cigarette-like warning label: "May cause cancer."
|US: Health Advocacy Group Warns of Conflicted Science|
by J.R. Pegg, Environment News Service
July 14th, 2003
Powerful corporate interests continue to use science and scientists to manipulate public opinion and influence public policy on health and the environment, experts say. The public may be aware of several prominent examples such as lead, tobacco and asbestos, but the "publicized cases are the tip of the iceberg," said Drummond Rennie, the deputy editor of the "Journal of the American Medical Association."
|INDIA: Holding Corporate Terrorists Accountable|
by Indra Sinha, AlterNet
May 6th, 2003
At noon on May 1, two Indian women, watched by a crowd of sympathizers, seated themselves on the sidewalk under the bull statue on Wall Street to begin "a fast unto death." Rasheeda Bee and Champa Devi Shukla are survivors of what the people of Bhopal still refer to as "that night."
|WORLD: Factory Farms Growing in Developing Nations|
Environmental News Service
April 22nd, 2003
Factory farms are expanding into developing countries, bringing these nations a wealth of environmental and public health concerns, finds a new paper by the Worldwatch Institute.
|South Africa: Indigenous Group Wins Rights to its Healing Herbs|
by Mercedes Sayagues, Inter Press Service
March 28th, 2003
ANDRIESVALE, South Africa, Mar. 28 (IPS) -- In a victory for indigenous groups, a landmark profit-sharing agreement has been signed providing credit and compensation to one of South Africa's oldest groups with extensive traditional knowledge of healing plants and herbs.
|ARGENTINA: Leap in Unsafe Abortions|
by Marcela Valente, Inter Press Service
March 12th, 2003
Hospital admissions arising from unsafe abortions in Argentina rose 50 percent in five years, and multiplied by a factor of 2.5 in some provinces -- a lethal consequence of the economic crisis and soaring poverty.
|USA: Bush Blocks Cheap Drugs for World's Poor|
by Charlotte Denny, Guardian/UK
February 19th, 2003
George Bush's close links with the drugs industry were last night blamed for the failure of talks in Geneva aimed at securing access to cheap medicines for developing countries.
|Brazil: Hopes Lift at WTO Drugs Talks|
by Bayan Rahman, Financial Times
February 17th, 2003
Brazilian proposal at the weekend has raised hopes of a breakthrough in the World Trade Organisation's deadlocked talks on poor ountries' access to essential medicines.
|UN: Water Deemed As Public Good, Human Right|
by Gustavo Capdevila, InterPress Service
November 27th, 2002
The United Nations Committee on Economic, Cultural and Social Rights issued a statement Wednesday declaring access to water a human right and stating that water is a social and cultural good, not merely an economic commodity.
|US: Cosmetics Industry Approves Controversial Chemicals|
by Cat Lazaroff, Environment News Service
November 20th, 2002
The U.S. Cosmetics Ingredients Review panel has approved the continued use of phthalates in cosmetics, concluding that the chemicals are "safe as currently used." Activist groups, noting that the European Union has just ordered the phase out of some phthalates in cosmetics, said the panel's decision leaves U.S. women at risk of exposure to chemicals that some tests suggest may be linked to birth defects.
|Taiwan: Workers Link Cancer to RCA Plant|
by Matthew Yi, San Francisco Chronicle
May 24th, 2002
While many laud the globalization of technology as a positive force that spreads the wealth and helps industry grow, a group of Taiwanese workers came to Silicon Valley Thursday to tell a different story.
|ECUADOR: Amazon Indians Appeal Texaco Case Ruling|
by Gail Appleson, Reuters
March 11th, 2002
Rainforest Indians of Ecuador and Peru urged a U.S. appeals court on Monday to reinstate nine-year-old litigation against Texaco, alleging that toxic dumping devastated their environment and exposed residents to cancer-causing pollutants.
|ECUADOR: Farmers Fight DynCorp's Chemwar on the Amazon|
by Jeffrey St. Clair and Alexander Cockburn, Counterpunch
February 27th, 2002
The International Labor Rights Fund has filed suit in US federal court on behalf of 10,000 Ecuadorian peasant farmers and Amazonian Indians charging DynCorp with torture, infanticide and wrongful death for its role in the aerial spraying of highly toxic pesticides in the Amazonian jungle, along the border of Ecuador and Colombia.
|Bayer Won't Pull Poultry Antibiotics|
November 1st, 2001
Recent threats of bioterrorism have highlighted how important it is to safeguard the effectiveness of America's antibiotics supply. But when the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently proposed a ban on the use of certain antibiotics to treat sick chickens and turkeys, Bayer Corporation refused to comply.
|USA: Crumbling Public Sector Makes Country Vulnerable to Bio-Terrorism|
by Naomi Klein, Toronto Globe & Mail
October 24th, 2001
Only hours after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, Republican Representative Curt Weldon went on CNN and announced that he didn't want to hear anyone talking about funding for schools or hospitals. From here on, it was all about spies, bombs and other manly things.
|TURKEY: Court Bans Cyanide Gold Process Near Ancient Town|
by Jon Gorvett, Environment News Service
January 16th, 2001
Despite an order from the country's Supreme Court backing up environmentalists, the pressure is mounting this week for the reopening of a controversial mine in one of Turkey's most visited tourist areas.
|US: Vermiculite Products Could Expose Consumers to Asbestos|
by Cat Lazaroff, Environment News Service
February 15th, 2000
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is investigating whether products made from vermiculite could expose consumers to asbestos. Preliminary test results on common household products indicate that a particularly lethal form of asbestos fibers contaminates some attic insulation, but researchers do not yet know whether normal use of these products could endanger consumers.
|US: Asbestos Tainted Ore Affected Thousands, Suit Charges|
by Cat Lazaroff, Environment News Service
February 1st, 2000
A class action lawsuit filed Monday seeks cleanup and medical monitoring funds to help more than 26,000 people exposed to asbestos from contaminated vermiculite ore. The suit alleges that decades of unsafe mining operations in Libby, Montana have led to illness and death for thousands of mineworkers, processing plant employees, and Libby residents.
by Traci Griggs and Martha Valds, La Jornada
December 9th, 1998
Non-profit environmental justice groups such as the San Diego-based Environmental Health Coalition (EHC), are trying to remove the rose colored glasses and expose the harsh reality of the U.S/Mexico border in an attempt to protect public and environmental health. EHC's battle against an abandoned maquiladora turned toxic dump, serves as a microcosm of what's wrong with border health and how NAFTA, for the most part, has exacerbated the problem.
|A Movement Blossoms: Cross-Border Activism Picks Up Speed|
by Kent Paterson, Borderlines
October 20th, 1998
In October 1998, after years of protest by an unprecedented bi-national coalition, the proposed Sierra Blanca nuclear waste dump was defeated. The proposed site for the commercial nuclear waste dump was just 16 miles from the Texas-Mexico border.
|Death, Neglect and the Bottom Line|
by William Allen and Kim Bell, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
September 27th, 1998
St. Louis-based Correctional Medical Services leads the expanding field of private companies providing medical care behind bars. The industry tries to keep a low profile, but a five-month investigation by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch found a disturbing pattern of deaths and untreated illnesses behind bars.
|US: Disney Shows Two Worlds|
by Mark Fritz, Associated Press
September 30th, 1996
Because Disney World controls so much of its corporate and municipal universe, it can't help but act in a heavy-handed manner in order to ferociously protect its self-interest.