No. 158 - Serving the Vision of a Sustainable Vancouver
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- Middle (225kb)
ORGANIC FOOD AND CANCER
There’s a big surprise brewing. When it breaks, I suspect
it will cause controversy and excitement all over the world. It
is still not proven, and has not been clinically trialed, but it’s
enough for me to say “Listen up!”
All cancer cells appear to contain a certain enzyme called CYP
1B1 which, when triggered, attacks the cancer. Until it is triggered,
the enzyme sits there doing nothing. In almost all cancer patients,
it appears to be inactive, as if waiting for a trigger that never
So what triggers it?
The story goes back to a young boy called Gerry Potter, growing
up in England, whose favorite aunt died in great pain from a combination
of cancer and chemotherapy when he was 4 years old. Gerry made
a vow, then and there, to find a cure for cancer that would not
be so toxic.
Fast forward many years. Gerry has done his studies, and is head
of the School of Pharmacy at De Montford University in Leicester,
England. With Professor Danny Burke at Aberdeen University School
of Medicine, they are working on the development of anti-cancer
They develop a drug that triggers the enzyme, and it is remarkably
effective. They patent it, and it is picked up by a drug company,
where it is undergoing a 16 year period of clinical trials.
If the trigger exists, however, Gerry thought, it must have evolved
in nature. There were no drugs around when the miracle that is
our bodies evolved.
So his team starts searching in nature, and found what they were
looking for: a natural phytoestrogen called resveratrols that exists
in grapes and red wine, that triggers the enzyme to work.
They then looked further afield, and found 50 similar compounds
in ripe fruits and vegetables around the world, which they named
But here’s where it gets interesting. When a fruit or vegetable
is getting ripe, it is prone to attack by fungus. Over millions
of years, plants have evolved a way to fight off the fungus by
generating the salvestrols. When we and other creatures eat the
plants, we eat the salvestrols, which then get to work on any fungus-like
diseases in our own bodies, including cancer cells.
When a farmer or gardener comes along with a can of chemical fungicide,
however, the plants are never exposed to fungus. They shrug their
shoulders and say “Why bother?” When we eat them, therefore,
they do not contain the crucial salvestrols. The enzymes in any
incipient cancer cells sit there idly, and the cells continue to
grow without interruption.
In the 20th century, meanwhile, we have pickled our bodies with
industrial chemicals and radiation. The average new-born baby has
200 industrial chemicals in its umbilical cord the day it is born.
Many of the chemicals are known carcinogens, and yet they are allowed
into the global environment without proper control or oversight.
Meanwhile, we stop growing food organically, and modern farmers
start spraying their crops and fields with fungicides, with no
awareness of what the impacts might be. So much of our modern genius
masks a deep, deep ignorance of nature’s ways.
The causes of cancer are many and complicated. It is not just
a matter of blaming our lifestyle or diet, except for smoking.
There are many doctors, scientists, and cancer specialists who
are looking at the role of toxic chemicals in the air, water, industry,
and household products.
Here in Canada, a new non-profit society is being launched at
the end of April called Prevent Cancer Now. We are holding fund-raising
runs and walks in Windsor, London, Ottawa, and here in Victoria
at the end of May to pay for our staff. If you’d like to
help in any way, please see inside.
But back to the salvestrols. Gerry Potter’s team found that
salvestrols are only found in ripe, organic fruits, herbs and vegetables:
primarily green vegetables, red fruits, and herbs such as basil
and parsley. That means locally grown organic, not shipped in from
California. High levels are also found in traditional medicinal
plants around the world.
As Hippocrates said, “Let food be your medicine, and medicine
So first, eat fresh organic food. Our bodies evolved on an all-organic
diet, and that is what they need.
Second, tell anyone who has cancer about this. Gerry Potter and
his team have developed a salvestrols food supplement, not as a
for-profit enterprise, but simply to make it available for those
who need it. It is undergoing 5-year clinical trials in London,
Dublin, and Malaysia, but the doctor-observed anecdotal results
look very positive for about 50% of the people who take the supplement.
Not all: just 50%, so don’t assume it’s a magic bullet.
And third, speak up for more fresh, locally grown organic food!
monthly newsletter, funded by your donations, that dreams of
a world blessed by the harmony of nature, the pleasures of community, & the
joys of personal fulfillment, protected and guided by active
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* VEGAN HOUSE! Seeking responsible, progressive, positive, eco-friendly
veggie for 5bdrm house in Oak Bay, Apr 15 or May
1st! veganhouse [-at-] gmail.com 598-0194
* Charming guest room, $25/night. Cook St Village, ocean.
* Small house on rural acreage, well and septic. Garden
space, landscaped yard. Semi-furnished, sunroom, skylights, 4-burner
gas stove. Private, quiet, no kids, no pets. $750. 652-2613
* Organic Athletes Wanted! If you're an athlete, and interested
in being on a team that promotes earth-friendly values, see www.OrganicAthlete.org -
In Victoria, contact Dave via http://cycling.thenoisies.com
* EcoNews volunteer running away from home needs to sell as
much stuff as she can to fund her adventure. Go to www.usedvictoria.com and put SZM in the search box to see her ads.
* Courtenay Cohousing Call 250-339-5993 www.creeksidecommons.ca
* Taxes done by financial professional, phone Roxanne Brydges,
CFP, at 704-2778, self-employed people welcome.
* Skipping Stone Beach B&B, Saltspring. Opening special:
$100/nite in April. Retreat to a beautiful new suite on the ocean.
Nora Layard, 537-2158 email@example.com
* For Sale: 1990 Mazda MPV van. $3995. 204,000 km. Runs well.
Sun roof, trailer hitch. Carolyn, 881-1555.
* Agricultural/Permaculture Design Skillbuilder and Natural
Building Skillbuilder residential learning community programs have
some spaces remaining. See www.ourecovillage.org
* Cancer Prevention. Will you join me in Victoria’s
1st Run, Walk and Roll for Cancer Prevention, on May 28th at Elk
Lake, to raise funds for Prevent Cancer Now, Canada’s new
non-profit society? Guy, 881-1304
Elite Earth-Friendly Dry Cleaners
only solvent free dry cleaner
1019 Cook St. 381-2221 Mon-Fri 8-6 Sat
ENERGY ART in ONTARIO
"ART" refers to Advanced Renewable Tariffs, a new policy
for sustainable energy which will send a zip of creativity through
the veins of anyone who wants to use solar or wind energy. ART
has been stunningly successful in Europe.
Under ART, anyone who wants to produce solar, wind, micro-hydro,
or other green energy has guaranteed access to the grid. They receive
a fixed contract for their power, at a rate set to stimulate investment.
In Germany, the policy has led to the development of 110,000 solar
PV systems, 2,000 biomass plants, 6,000 small hydro plants, 16,500
wind turbines, and 135,000 jobs.
Ontario has just adopted the policy (calling it a Standard Offer
Contract) for systems under 10 MW, which will encourage ordinary
people to pool their resources to invest in sustainable energy.
For every kilowatt/hour of wind, biomass or small hydro that they
send to the grid, they will receive 11 cents; for every kilowatt/hour
of solar PV, they will get 42 cents. 10 MW is about enough power
to serve 10,000 homes. The cost is covered by the utility ratepayer.
This is the single most important policy change that has ever happened
in the Canada’s energy history. The BC Sustainable Energy
System is pushing for the same system over here. (See Action of
Hal Hinkle is an American financier and musician who worked at
Goldman Sachs for 22 years, and then branched out on his own, learnt
about global climate change, and became very concerned. He founded
the Hinkle Charitable Foundation, and is putting his efforts behind
a campaign to educate people by six well-researched emails.
"Of all the issues I have ever focused on, I have never
become as concerned or as passionate about any as I am now about
global warming. If you want to get motivated yourself, read my
emails: I suspect you'll be stunned."
For each person who reads his emails, he is donating $100 US to
one of three organizations which provide carbon offsets to reduce
global emissions. This includes the Solar Electric Light Fund (www.self.org),
which I support, as I love their work of putting solar energy into
developing world villages; I use SELF to make my whole life carbon
Will you do the planet a favour? Go to www.thehcf.org,
read Hal’s emails, and click on "Take Advantage of My
Challenge". I’d love it if you ask Hal to send his $100
to SELF, but that’s your call. Please tell your friends about
Looking for a community that cherishes the
challenges the mind, nurtures the spirit? You'll be
Was the 2004 US election rigged? It is a very sensitive question,
when you consider that the US is using its troops,to spread democracy
around the world. In Ohio, where Bush won by just 118,599 votes,
there were many documented anomalies.
But unlike random anomalies, which ought to favour both sides
equally, the Ohio anomalies almost overwhelmingly favoured Bush,
according to Professor Bob Fitrakis of Columbus State Community
College. Of the 5.6 million votes cast in Ohio, 4% (some 224,000
ballots) were not counted for various reasons. Two-thirds came
from urban, heavily Democratic districts. In some heavily Republican
counties, John Kerry received fewer votes than obscure fellow-Democrats
who were running in simultaneous state elections. At a New Life
Church polling site in the predominantly Republican Gahanna county,
a machine recorded 4,258 votes for Bush, when only 638 people cast
Bush needed Ohio’s seats in the Electoral College to win
the Presidency. The CEO of the Diebold Corporation, which operates
many of the electronic voting machines, is the strongly Republican
Wally O’Dell, who wrote to Ohio Republican donors in 2003
saying that he was "committed to helping Ohio deliver its
electoral votes to the President next year."
In California, which has always voted Democratic, partisan Republican
supervisors recently re-certified the Diebold voting machines,
when it was clear that the machines were vulnerable to hacking,
sending an ominous sign that the democracy-hacking forces are intent
on repeating their tricks in the mid-term elections and the 2008
The Garden Path Nursery
Certified Organic Vegetables, Fruits, Seeds, Ornamentals,
Open April 1st to July 3rd Daily
10am to 5:30pm
395 Conway Rd, Victoria 250-881-1555
GREEN BUILDING DIRECTORY
Do you run a business that supplies services or
materials for green, buildings? The BC Sustainable Energy Association
is creating a Green Building Directory for Vancouver Island, in
partnership with Dockside Green. Contact Guy Dauncey, 250-881-1304 firstname.lastname@example.org
The Convention on Biological Diversity is the world’s main
legal forum for agreeing on issues related to global biological
diversity. In March, the 188 nations which have ratified the Convention
met in Curitiba, Brazil (one of the world’s greenest cities),
in one of those huge UN conferences where delegates scurry around
and try to reach agreement by talking late into the night.
One of the hot topics was the proposal by Australia, New Zealand
and Canada, guided by the US and companies like Monsanto and Syngenta,
to lift the moratorium on Terminator Seeds (also known as "suicide
seeds") from plants which have been genetically engineered
so that their seeds do not germinate, except when triggered by
an agent controlled by the biotech companies. This technology,
if allowed, would threaten the ancient tradition whereby farmers
collect and protect their own seeds.
In 2000, the UN adopted a moratorium on the development of Terminator
seeds, but the biotech companies continued on regardless, with
Canada taking a lead role in trying to overturn the moratorium.
The Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Ottawa seems
to have been taken over by the biotech industry, which ought to
be exposed as a piece of major political corruption.
At the time of writing, the working group at the conference had
rejected the call for the moratorium to be lifted, after strenuous
efforts by the African group of nations, Norway, Pakistan, Kenya,
India, Brazil, and the whole European Union, and it is hoped that
this will remain the position at the conference wrap-up. The Terminator
seed companies and their political supporters will doubtless try
again at the next UN meeting in 2008.
Pat Mooney, of the Ban Terminator Campaign, says the real solution
is a permanent ban on the technology once, and that all national
governments should introduce national bans, as Brazil and India
have done. www.banterminator.org
Tre Arrow is an American citizen from Portland who has been imprisoned
in Canada since March 2004. He is currently being held in Victoria’s
Wilkinson Jail, while awaiting a decision on April 4th from
Vic Toews, Canada’s Justice Minister, about his requested
extradition back to the States.
Back in Oregon, Tre was a very prominent activist who worked tirelessly
and courageously with others to save what little is left of the
US northwest’s ancient forests. In particular, he campaigned
to save a chunk of forest known as God’s Valley from being
logged by the quaintly named Christian Futures, an Oregon forestry
In 2001, two logging trucks were destroyed by fire, and the person
arrested, facing an 80-year jail sentence, did a plea bargain with
the FBI to be out of jail in 3.5 years, and named Tre Arrow as
the organizer. Fearing a set-up by the FBI, Tre fled to Canada,
where he was arrested in 2004.
Tre follows a raw-food vegan diet, but the Canadian prison service
refused to let him eat what he needed. Only after a 44 day fast,
when his weight fell to 81 pounds, and only after the prison doctors
insisted that he be allowed to have raw food, did he return to
Starting on March 13th, Tre is now on a 24 day hunger
strike to protest the US government, the FBI, and the Canadian
government for denying him bail for two years except with a surety
of $300,000, despite his emphatic declaration of innocence.
Tre says: "I am an innocent man being targeted, framed and
persecuted not because I am guilty of arson, but because I am an
To contact Tre’s Defense Committee, email email@example.com .
To send a message to Tre call Dani Rubin 250-818-6305. See www3.telus.net/public/trearrow .
Langford is about to announce a major new initiative to develop
a large-scale green, sustainable neighbourhood of up to 5,000 homes,
following new LEED guidelines. LEED stands for "Leadership
in Energy and Environmental Design", and is applied on a voluntary
basis to commercial buildings. As such, it has been enormously
successful, and is causing a small revolution in the building industry.
The Canada Green Building Council has been working on a "LEED
for Neighbourhoods", and Langford has been chosen to pioneer
the new approach on land on either side of the railway line between
Humpback and Jacklin Roads, allowing for a railway connection to
downtown Victoria. The full details are to be unveiled on April
19th, just in time for Earth Week. Congratulations,
Wearing a far, far less green hat, Langford is encouraging every
landowner with land in the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) to join
a shared effort to ask for it to be removed from the ALR. In 2003,
Langford had 170 hectares in the ALR, which was created to protect
the province’s best farmland so that we can use it to grow
THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF WEB
Some sites that have passed my way:
APRIL IS EARTH MONTH
Treat yourself to one of the many nature trips to see the incredible
displays of wildflower. Come and join the big the Earth Walk on
April 22nd. Join the "Garbage to Gold" field
trip on Tue 4th, or the Easter Monday Pilgrimage on
the 17th. There’s lots happening: join in!
ACTION OF THE MONTH: ENERGY POLICY IN BC
See "Energy Art in Ontario" story
Action: Please write to the Premier, and ask that a policy similar
to Ontario’s Standard Offer Contract for alternative, sustainable
energy be introduced in BC.
Rt Hon Gordon Campbell, Legislative Assembly, Victoria V8V 1X4.
Fax: 250-387-0087 firstname.lastname@example.org
To send a copy to every BC MLA, see: www.legis.gov.bc.ca/mla/3-1-7.htm
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395 Conway Road, Victoria V9E
Tel/Fax (250) 881-1304
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