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</P> Company Sales 2002 Sales 2001 Change (US billions) (US billions) 1. Syngenta 5.260 5.385 -2.3% 2. Bayer 3.775 3.978 -5.1% 3. Monsanto 3.088 3.755 -17.8% 4. BASF 2.787 3.105 10.2% 5. Dow 2.717 2.612 4..

Top Six Agro-Chemical Giants

Company Sales 2002 Sales 2001 Change
(US billions) (US billions)

1. Syngenta 5.260 5.385 -2.3%
2. Bayer 3.775 3.978 -5.1%
3. Monsanto 3.088 3.755 -17.8%
4. BASF 2.787 3.105 10.2%
5. Dow 2.717 2.612 4.0%
6. DuPont 1.793 1.814 -1.2%

Agricultural Chemical Sales Drop

Could it be that consumer demand for toxic-free foods and the rising interest in environmental sustainability are having an effect on the chemical industry? Agrow World Crop Protection News says that international agro-chemical sales-including pesticides, herbicides and fungicides-fell 1.5 per cent in 2002 to US $27.7 billion.

In the past five years, global sales have declined 12 per cent. Industry experts expect another drop in 2003, followed by 0.4 per cent increases over the next four years. To keep chemical sales sliding, do your part by purchasing organic and earth-friendly foods (, and by practising safer yard care (

Latest Pollution Stats "Stinky"

The latest toxic pollution statistics may have some Canadians holding their noses. Domestic industrial air emissions rose seven per cent from 1998 to 2000, while US emissions dropped eight per cent.

According to NAFTA's Commission for Environmental Cooperation in its annual "Taking Stock" report, a total of 3.2 million tonnes of 26 chemicals were released or slotted for disposal in 2000, including many known toxins linked to cancer and birth defects. Overall, the figure dropped four per cent since 1998 (3.43 million tonnes).

Ontario was the third-worst polluting area in both countries. The province's coal-fired, electric power plant in Nanticoke caused half of Canada's increase.

"Small polluters," with emissions from 10 to 100 tonnes, accounted for a large rise in emissions-66 per cent in Canada versus only 29 per cent in the US. Although the more publicized industry giants pollute the most, smaller companies-local food processors, lumber mills, metal factories and the like-should nevertheless be equally monitored, according to the report's authors.

Halifax Group Spearheads Safer Schools

Is your child's school "sick?" Many serious health problems-in children and adults-result from aging schools with poor indoor air quality, lead-based paints, mold overgrowth, eroded piping and chemical-laced building materials. But one Halifax group, Citizens for a Safe Learning Environment, hopes to raise awareness about this often overlooked source of toxic exposure.

The focus of this nine-year-old registered charity is ensuring Nova Scotia's schools are safe places for attendees and staff. One of their recent successes involved the re-opening of Halifax West High School, which closed in August 2000 for safety reasons. With the support of the Department of Education's Healthy School Construction Committee, the new facilities were carefully created, resulting in a healthy environment at the forefront of school design.

Among its many accomplishments: The Halifax West High School has a water-pump (not oil-based) heating system. The chemistry lab boasts a special ventilation system, while the school's entire ventilation system exceeds industry standards. The gym floors were finished months in advance to reduce emissions. Fewer toxic building materials and equipment were chosen. Pesticides were avoided during and after landscaping.

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