ngin - Norfolk Genetic Information Network

21 January 2003


Bayer through its purchase of Aventis CropScience owns over half of the GM crop varieties currently seeking approval for commercial growing in the EU. Bayer is also responsible for the majority of GM field trials in the UK. It is also the world's number two pesticide producer (behind Syngenta).

Item 2 indicates the kind of ethical corporation Bayer is while item 3 shows the level of damage caused in just one instance of its corporate activities. The first item is about fellow gene giant Dow and how to take action to protest its corporate indifference to the damage and suffering it is responsible for in India.

Question: Do we really want companies like these in charge of the world's food supply???!

For more on Bayer:

some items shortened:
3.7 million Euro demanded from PCB producers, Bayer & others
4.SAY NO TO WAR IN IRAQ - Greenpeace cyberaction



Dow Chemical seems to think it can safely ignore the suffering of thousands of people in Bhopal who live with the contamination caused by the factory its Union Carbide subsidiary abandoned following the worst industrial accident in history. Despite receiving over 15,000 emails and many thousands of postcards and letters urging it to clean up Bhopal the company still insists the abandoned factory is not its problem. That is why we need your help to call Dow on Wednesday and tell them to clean up Bhopal now!

Dow has an free phone ethics line open 24 hours a day to deal with any ethical concerns you may have about the company.

The free phone number and further details will appear on the Greenpeace front page here:

on Wednesday morning Central European time.

We would love to hear back from as many people as possible about your call to Dow and if you have sound recording equipment an mp3 sound file of your call. You can send your details by replying to the cybercentre article which will appear here on Wednesday morning:

Here are two fun example calls you can listen to:

If you want to find out more before the call visit our section on Bhopal:

Or if you need some motivation see how Dow is suing the Bhopal survivors rather than helping them:



Bayer CropScience, of Monheim, Germany, one of the world's biggest chemicals companies, faces an inquiry after it was found to have  used students to test a "highly hazardous" pesticide linked to serious disorders. The story says that the company paid students, mostly  from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, $1,100 each to consume fruit juice laced with the pesticide.

The project, the fine detail of which is secret, has been condemned in the U.S. as unscientific and unethical. Lawyers point out that the Nuremberg Code, formulated after the Nazis' wartime experiments, bans the use of humans for testing poisonous substances that have no medical application. Bayer is the daughter company of IG Farben, the manufacturer of Zyklon B, the gas used in Nazi extermination camps.

Bayer is using the results of the study, conducted between 1998 and 2000, to support an argument that restrictions on pesticide use should be eased, because no  immediate adverse effects were suffered. The story says that groups of up to 16 volunteers were housed at a privately run research centre in  Edinburgh and fed azinphos-methyl (AM), an organophosphate chemical. The dosages have not been disclosed.

The World Health Organization has classified AM as "highly hazardous." Exposure to it is linked to blood and nervous system problems. The dangers are well documented. Accidental ingestion by 42 Peruvian children last year led to 24 deaths, and recent spillages of the chemical into rivers in Prince Edward Island have killed 15,000 fish.

The story adds that although Bayer has not checked on the subsequent health of its human guinea pigs, it is  using the research to try to persuade the American Environmental Protection Agency to raise the levels of AM it allows farmers to use on crops.

The agency is concerned about the conduct of the studies and has referred them to an expert panel of the respected National Academy of Sciences (NAS). The panel is demanding to know exactly how the unpublished trial was conducted. The agency said last week that  10 of 17 studies it is examining are in Britain and involve Inveresk, a contract research company "The NAS has until December to give  an opinion on whether these human studies are ethically and scientifically valid," an agency spokesman said. Nobody from  Inveresk was available for comment yesterday. Bayer said its studies were performed "in full accordance with national and international regulations and standards."
January 12, 2003, The Ottawa Citizen Lois Rogers, Source: The Times, London

Coalition against BAYER-dangers
Fax: (+49) 211 333 940  Tel: (+49) 211 333 911


3.City of Oslo demands 7 million Euro from PCB producers

From: CBGnetwork
Sent: Tuesday, January 21, 2003 4:21 PM

Press release 21st January 2003

Historic claim against PCB producers
City of Oslo demands 7 million Euro from Bayer AG, Solutia and Kaneka in compensation for harbour clean-up

The City of Oslo, Department of Environment, has directed a claim of 7 million Euros to three multinational chemical companies responsible for severe contamination with Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) in the Oslo fjord. - A historic claim. This is an important step towards establishing the principle of extended producers' responsibility, says Tom Erik Okland (1) of Friends of the Earth Norway. FoEN has advocated the principle for several years.

About half of the PCBs in Oslo harbour have been traced back to German chemical giant Bayer AG. The rest originates from two other producers, Belgium based Solutia (chemical division of multinational Monsanto) and the Japanese Kaneka Corporation. In a letter to Bayer AG the City of Oslo has asked for a compensation of 3.5 million Euro to cover part of the clean-up of heavily contaminated sediments in Oslo harbour. Similar claims have been addressed to the two other companies.

Coalition against BAYER-dangers
Fax: (+49) 211 333 940  Tel: (+49) 211 333 911


4.SAY NO TO WAR IN IRAQ - Greenpeace

Every day brings a new development that seems to bring the world closer to war in Iraq. Surprisingly, one major force for peace could be the United Nations Security Council. Surprisingly, because the Bush administration originally seemed to have little respect or time for the United Nations. However, polls show that the US public, like most people around the world, places more faith in the United Nations than do Bush and his oil industry supporters.

So the Bush administration may need to go back to the UN Security Council before beginning a war in Iraq. If it does, Greenpeace believes that the Security Council should say No to a war in Iraq. There are many reasons for this, but one is that Iraq is not currently threatening the United States, and under international law, the United States cannot claim legitimate self defence.

But will the UN Security Council stand up to the Bush adminstration? In this time of global crisis, please write to the UN ambassadors that sit on the Security Council and ask them to uphold international law and refuse to approve a war in Iraq. You can use this link:

To find more information and more to do, please take a look at this article:

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