MASSPIRG Urges Lawmakers to Ban the Use of Toxic Pesticides

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MASSPIRG testified in support of bills to restrict the use of toxic pesticides including Glyphosate and Noenicitinoids and a bill to reduce the use of rodenticides through promotion of integrated pest management

There are more than 80,000 chemicals on the market in the United States, used in everything from perfumes and household cleaners to fertilizers and industrial solvents. Yet most of them go directly into use without testing their impact on our health, or the long-term consequences for the environment. Given what we know about the potential harm some chemicals can do, we shouldn’t rush a chemical into widespread industrial or commercial use before we know for sure that it’s safe. Certainly, we should stop using the ones we know or suspect are harmful.

“Most of us take it for granted that the food we eat and the fields our children play on at school or  in our own back yards are not putting their  health at risk,” said Deirdre Cummings, Legislative Director, MASSPIRG. “But unfortunately, too often, that is not the case.”

For example, the World Health Organization has warned that the main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, glyphosate, is a probable human carcinogen.  Despite the risks, we spray 26 million pounds of Roundup on public parks, playgrounds, schools and gardens every year. And now studies are finding glyphosate in places it shouldn’t be including cereals, beer, ice cream, and our bodies. MASSPIRG urged the committee to ban the retail and consumer use of glyphosate, and ban the use of the pesticide in pubic land, schools and childcare centers.

MASSPIRG also urged lawmakers to protect pollinators by further restricting the use of “neonicotinoids”, and to protect raptors by restricting rat poisonings. “The passage of these bills will improve our health, the health of wildlife and the health of our environment.”

Please see full testimony here.