Big River Documentary


12/6/09- Last night we viewed Big River the latest documentary from Producer Aaron Wolf. It starts with an interview with Iowa Farmer Chuck Piatt just after the great Midwest soil erosion disaster in Spring of 2008. He confirms that the Corn Belt has lost half its topsoil in the last 50 years. An interview with Yale professor discusses atrazine one of the dominant pesticides used in modern industrial farming and its connection along with other industrial farming chemicals to high incidence of cancer in industrial farming areas. High concentrations of atrazine were also reported in Delmarva waters by USGS in 33circular 1228. Ian and Curt then proceed downstream to the DesMoine water treatment plant which is removing high levels of nitrate particularly dangerous to young children. We eventually arrive at the Gulf where watermen are increasingly dredging up dead species which is putting them out of business. Nancy Rabalias is interviewed. You may remember that she was interviewed by PBS on increasing Gulf Hypoxia due corn/ethanol a tape of this interview can be found archived under the Water Tab. I thought it interesting that delegations of fishermen have reached out to Iowa Farmers for help in stopping the chemicals coming down the Mississippi. Wes Jackson is also interviewed in this film.

Submitted by Donald Kerstetter


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