Presented below are ten sobering facts about Glyphosate (the key ingredient in Monsanto’s RoundUp weedkiller, which the majority of Monsanto’s seeds are genetically engineered to withstand):
1) Glyphosate causes disease and biological / physiological disorders in crops
Fifteen years of research by the USDA indicates that the chemical glyphosate, the key ingredient in RoundUp herbicide, is linked to fungal root disease in plants.
Purdue Report about biological/physiological disorders: http://www.btny.purdue.edu/weedscience/2011/GlyphosatesImpact11.html
2) Glyphosate is no longer effective at killing weeds
Article about Superweeds: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/04/business/energy-environment/04weed.html
International Database on Glycines (Glyphosate family):http://www.weedscience.com/summary/MOA.aspx?MOAID=12
Iowa State: http://www.extension.iastate.edu/CropNews/2011/0120hartzler.htm
University of Arkansas: http://bumperscollege.uark.edu/test_cses2012/1946.php
National Academy of Sciences Report: http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=12804
3) Glyphosate use is increasing steadily
According to the USGS, more than 88,000 tons of glyphosate were used in the United States in 2007, up from 11,000 tons in 1992. Since the advent of “super weeds,” the use of glyphosate (and other even stronger weed killers) has risen significantly.
4) Glyphosate is not breaking down as promised
In 1996, New York’s attorney general sued Monsanto over the company’s use of “false and misleading advertising” about RoundUp. That case ended with Monsanto agreeing to stop calling Roundup “biodegradable,” and to pull ads claiming that Roundup was “safer than table salt,” “practically nontoxic,” and ”stayed where you put it.”
Two decades after the advent of “RoundUp Ready” crops and their dominance in the agricultural marketplace, the evidence of their falsehoods abound: multiple studies have found significant levels of glyphosate in streams, soil, air, rainwater, and groundwater:
Rain and Streams: http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=2909
Soil: http://www.docstoc.com/docs/124999079/Effects-of-Glyphosate-and-Foliar-Amendments-on-Soil-Microorganisms (slideshow; see presentation here; view reporthere)
Atmosphere, Soil and Surface Water: http://environment.gov.ab.ca/info/library/6444.pdf
Mississippi and Iowa Streams: https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/abstract_162346.htm
Glyphosate residues are also found in our food: a recent study found that Glyphosate residues in the main foods of the Western diet – sugar, wheat, and genetically modified corn and soy – inhibit critical enzymes in mammals [which] manifests slowly over time, as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the body.Source: http://www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/15/4/1416
No surprise, a study done in Germany in 2012 found glyphosate in all of the urine samples it took from non-agricultural workers in Berlin, at levels 5-20 times the limit for drinking water. Source: http://www.ithaka-journal.net/herbizide-im-urin?lang=en
5) Glyphosate causes birth defects and tumors in animals, and sharp declines in beneficial insects
And often at dilutions far lower than the concentrations used in agricultural and even home garden spraying…
A June 2011 report assembled by an international team of scientists revealed that studies done as early as the 1980s by biotech and ag-industry corporations (including Monsanto) all showed that Roundup’s active ingredient glyphosate causes birth defects in laboratory animals… again, at very low exposures. Read a related article here.
6) Glyphosate is a genotoxic endocrine disruptor to human cells
Glyphosate is the key ingredient in Monsanto’s RoundUp weedkiller, along with other “inert” ingredients that are potentially even more dangerous. Use vinegar instead!
7) Glyphosate is linked to cancer
Three studies have linked glyphosate exposure with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma:
8) Glyphosate causes DNA damage
Inhalation of glyphosate was observed to cause DNA damage after short exposure to concentrations that correspond to the 450-fold dilution of spraying most commonly used in agriculture:
9) The EPA is still working on Glyphosate’s human risk assessment
Although the EPA has found the time to establish a National Acceptable Daily Intake of glyphosate (5.5% per day; as cited in the study done on pregnant women), long-term human risk assessment studies are slow to emerge.
Glyphosate Detected in Pregnant Women:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22261298
EPA Study Outline and Schedule: http://pesticidetruths.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/Reference-glyphosate-2009-12-00-Final-Work-Plan-EPA.pdf
10) Glyphosate resistance is the primary purpose of genetic crop engineering
GM crops have been responsible for a 527 million pound increase in herbicide use in the United States over the first 16 years of commercial use of GM crops (1996 – 20011).
Article containing multiple source links:http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/sis5219
Article compiling facts researched by Nature Magazine: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/05/01/the-rise-of-genetically-modified-crops-in-two-charts/
Study: Benbrook, C. 2009. Impacts of Genetically Engineered Crops on Pesticide Use: The First Thirteen Years
Glyphosate-resistant giant ragweed infesting RoundUp Ready corn; photo by Dr. Bill Johnson
Additional Sources and Studies about Glyphosate:
For those who want as many scientific references, peer-reviewed studies, and reports as possible…
Why Glyphosate Should be Banned
A Review of its Hazards to Health and the Environment
Sirinathsinghji, E., Ho, Mae-Wan
Full Report (ISIS Members only): http://www.i-sis.org.uk/error/login_error.php?location=Why_Glyphosate_Should_be_Banned.php
Glyphosate Fact Sheet from Beyond Pesticides
Glyphosate Fact Sheet from Pesticide.org
Glyphosate Fact Sheet from Mindfully.Org
Caroline Cox. Journal of Pesticide Reform, Volume 15, Number 3, Fall 1995. Northwest Coalition for Alternatives to Pesticides, Eugene, OR.