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Health and Environmental Impacts of Monsanto's Roundup Pesticide

from http://www.jrussellshealth.com/pests24d.html
A recent study by eminent oncologists Dr. Leonard Hardell and Dr. Mikael Eriksson of Sweden, has revealed clear links between one of the world’s biggest selling herbicide, glyphosate (commonly known as Roundup, marketed by Monsanto), to non-Hodgkins lymphoma, a form of cancer - NHL. There are even requests for permits for higher residues on genetically engineered foods because they are highly resistant to herbicides, instead of reducing herbicide use, glyphosate resistant crops may result in increased residues. They are already on sale. Farmers knowing that their crop will tolerate or resist being killed off by the herbicides will tend to use them more liberally. There have been no risk/benefit analysis carried out, so the regulatory authorities have failed to implement the precautionary principle with respect to GMOs.
(“Herbicide Tolerance,” New Study Links Monsanto’s Roundup to cancer,” www.biotech-info.net/glyphosate_cancer.html - June 2001)


The Women’s Cancer Resource Center (WCRC) and CHOSE (Coalition for a Healthy Oakland School Environment), showed that chemicals such as Round-Up (glyphosate) can result in reproductive damage as well as damage to the kidney and liver, and some studies show a link between the chemical and cancer.
(Chemical Injury Network, June 2001)


Glyphosate (Roundup) is one of the most toxic herbicides, and is the third most commonly reported cause of pesticide related illness among agricultural workers. Products containing glyphosate also contain other compounds, which can be toxic. Glyphosate is technically extremely difficult to measure in environmental samples, which means that data is often lacking on residue levels in food and the environment, and existent data may not be reliable.
(“Greenpeace Report - Not ready for Roundup: Glyphosate Fact Sheet,” greenpeace.org - April 1997)


Glyphosate is found in weed killers and may cause cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, nerve, and respiratory damage.
(“Special Report: what you need to know about pest control,” Natural Health Magazine, May/June 2001)


Roundup: Label - Keep out of reach of children, harmful if swallowed, avoid contact with eyes or prolonged contact with skin. Remove clothing if contaminated. Spray solutions of this product should be mixed, stored and applied only in stainless steel, aluminum, fiberglass, plastic and plastic-lined steel containers. This product or spray solutions of this product react with such containers and tanks to produce hydrogen gas that may form a highly combustible gas mixture. This gas mixture could flash or explode, causing serious personal injury, if ignited by open flame, spark, welder’s torch, lighted cigarette or other ignition source. Avoid direct applications to any body of water. Do not contaminate water by disposal of waste or cleaning of equipment. Avoid contamination of seed, feed, and foodstuffs. Soak up a small amounts of spill with absorbent clay. Do not reuse container for any other purpose.
(Roundup - Label, farmcentral.com - June 2001)


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Monsano’s advertising campaigns have convinced many people that Roundup is safe, but the facts just don’t support this. Independent scientific studies have shown that Roundup is toxic to earthworms, beneficial insects, birds and mammals, plus it destroys the vegetation on which they depend for food and shelter. Although Monsanto claims that Roundup breaks down into harmless substances, it has been found to be extremely persistent, with residue absorbed by subsequent crops over a year after application. Roundup shows adverse effects in all standard categories of toxicological testing, including medium-term toxicity, long-term toxicity, genetic damage, effects on reproduction, and carcinogenicity.


Studies have shown that Roundup’s active ingredient, glyphosate, made bean plants more susceptible to disease, and reduces the growth of beneficial soil-dwelling mycorrhizal fungi. In rabbits exposed to glyphosate, sperm production was diminished by 50%, and caused genetic damage in the livers and kidneys of mice exposed to the herbicide. Monsano does not have to reveal the precise composition of Roundup.
(“Common Weed Killer (Roundup) Shows Evidence of Environmental and Health Problems,” Organic Gardening, July 2000 - in www.chem-tox.com - 2002)


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Pharmacia Corporation owns Monsanto, and Monsanto makes Roundup insecticide. (www.mercola.com - May 2002) The Pharmacia Corporation’s core prescription pharmaceutical business claims to be a good citizen wherever they operate, and they are implementing a new, comprehensive system for managing environmental, safety, and health issues and has adopted a series of ESH standards to guide operations worldwide. (Pharmacia.com - May 2002) Some may question the ownership of a company that produces so many harmful chemicals to people, animals and plants. Roundup accounts for half of Monsano’s corporate profits says Organic Gardening, July 2000.


Dangers that affect children’s progress and interactions at school include learning disabilities and behavior problems. Among the dangerous chemicals is Roundup, which kills all green plants that it touches (users are advised to avoid the area for 24 hours). Another is Diazinon, used for killing insects in lawns (this one has a warning to keep away from edible plants because of its high degree of toxicity). Some schools have opted to pull weeds by hand, thus eliminating the need for spraying.
(“Keep those pests away from school,” Alternative Medicine magazine, March 2002)