Green MEPs 'pissed off'

Published in Poisons Beware

The Green Group of the European Parliament organized urine tests for the herbicide glyphosate on 48 volunteer MEPs. 

Our foodstuffs are inescapably contaminated Our foodstuffs are inescapably contaminated Photo: Vivian Grisogono

The results were announced in a Press Release on May 12th 2016.

Glyphosate showed up in all the samples. Shocking, but not surprising to those who know how widespread the use of glyphosate is.

The average contamination was 1.7 micrograms/litre, which is 17 times higher than the norm for European drinking water. The Croatian MEP tested had the third highest reading of urine glyphosate at 2.46 μg/L, with a Lithuania MEP showing the greatest concetration (2.84 μg/L), followed by a Hungarian MEP with 2.63 μg/L

Perhaps taking the lead from Eco Hvar's article in Total Croatia News entitled 'EU taking the piss', the Green Group announced they were 'pissed off that our governments want to allow this poison for another nine years! No politician should have this in his or her body, and not a single citizen either!'

The Press Release described the multitude of problems associated with glyphosate use, and the alternative techniques which would be safer and better for the environment and human health.

Sadly, the Green Group recognized that the European Commission was resolutely set on driving through renewed approval for glyphosate use in Europe, despite opposition from the informed public and some governments: “in its latest proposal that will be voted next week (19th May) the Commission ploughs ahead with a full-fledged approval of glyphosate's license for nine years. It considers only symbolically if at all the European Parliament's resolution calling for a very limited scope of approval. Responsibility for the protection of operators and for multiple risks is discharged onto Member States in a non-legally binding manner.” The EC had already ridden rough-shod over the Environment Committee's call for a ban on the poison.

To add insult to injury, in advance of a further vote on re-approving glyphosate, yet another supposedly reassuring statement was produced by the United Nations Joint Meeting on Pesticide Residues (JMPR), designed to fool the unwary into thinking that those opposed to glyphosate are simply scaremongering. Experts from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization concluded that glyphosate was “unlikely to pose a carcinogenic risk to humans from exposure through the diet”. Yet another diversionary tactic designed to lull people into a false sense of security. The statement was publicized just a few days in advance of the further vote in the European Parliament.

It is hard to see the point of having such votes. Parliamentarians recommended a ban and several precautionary measures. Their receommendations were ignored, and they were asked to vote on a seven-year re-approval term, which was passed. Yet the next vote was asking for a nine-year approval. It would be the stuff of farce if teh consequences were not so tragic.

It is not the first time that poisons have been approved by the EC in defiance of opposition from governments, scientists and the public. Evidently proof of unacceptable risks cuts no ice with them. The European Parliament is sorely lacking in power, and its democratic processes are in total disarray. So it's down to individual governments and individual food producers and consumers to try to redress the balance as best they can. A stiff challenge - but everything is possible.

© Vivian Grisogono 2016 

You are here: Home poisons be aware Green MEPs 'pissed off'

Eco Environment News feeds

  • Wenlock Edge, Shropshire:A sunbeam bends into a rainbow over the trees, fields and lanes, against the dark-light of cloud

    Sunlight startles trees and lets small birds furtle through the ash crowns shining green-gold. The last beam breaks against a lowering sky to reveal the coming rain that would otherwise slip in through the gloaming.

    In this moment, the sunbeam bends into a rainbow over the trees, fields and lanes, against the dark-light of cloud. The arc passes high overhead through the remains of the day but its feet plunge down into the dark-half, the under-hill, where shadows are superimposed on shadows, where there is an undecipherable plan.

    Continue reading...

  • Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change calls for green recovery from pandemic

    The devastation caused by Covid-19 presents an opportunity for countries to rebuild their economies in a way that is environmentally responsible, researchers say.

    “The only way you can meet the Paris agreement is by taking advantage of this moment … by combining the recovery from Covid-19 with the response to climate change,” said Dr Nick Watts, the chief sustainability officer for the NHS.

    Continue reading...

  • Environment secretary hails ‘Brexit success’ for animal welfare, but poultry to be excluded and Northern Ireland exempted


    Plans to ban the export of live animals for slaughter and fattening are to be unveiled by the UK’s environment secretary, George Eustice, on Thursday.

    The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said the plans were part of a renewed push to strengthen Britain’s position as a world leader on animal welfare.

    Continue reading...

  • António Guterres lists human-inflicted wounds on natural world in stark message

    Humanity is facing a new war, unprecedented in history, the secretary general of the UN has warned, which is in danger of destroying our future before we have fully understood the risk.

    The stark message from António Guterres follows a year of global upheaval, with the coronavirus pandemic causing governments to shut down whole countries for months at a time, while wildfires, hurricanes and powerful storms have scarred the globe.

    Continue reading...

  • Production must fall by 6% a year to avoid ‘severe climate disruption’ but Covid-19 funding is supporting increases

    The world’s governments are “doubling down” on fossil fuels despite the urgent need for cuts in carbon emissions to tackle the climate crisis, a report by the UN and partners has found.

    The researchers say production of coal, oil and gas must fall by 6% a year until 2030 to keep global heating under the 1.5C target agreed in the Paris accord and avoid “severe climate disruption”. But nations are planning production increases of 2% a year and G20 countries are giving 50% more coronavirus recovery funding to fossil fuels than to clean energy.

    Continue reading...

  • The outlook for Australian sites including the Blue Mountains and the Gondwana rainforests has deteriorated, report says

    The outlook for five Australian world heritage sites including the Great Barrier Reef, the Blue Mountains and the Gondwana rainforests, has deteriorated, according to a global report that finds climate change is now the number one threat to the planet’s natural world heritage.

    The International Union for Conservation of Nature, the official advisory body on nature to the Unesco world heritage committee, has found in its world heritage outlook that climate change threatens a third of the world’s natural heritage sites. The outlook has been published every three years since 2014.

    Continue reading...

  • Singapore’s approval of chicken cells grown in bioreactors is seen as landmark moment across industry

    Cultured meat, produced in bioreactors without the slaughter of an animal, has been approved for sale by a regulatory authority for the first time. The development has been hailed as a landmark moment across the meat industry.

    The “chicken bites”, produced by the US company Eat Just, have passed a safety review by the Singapore Food Agency and the approval could open the door to a future when all meat is produced without the killing of livestock, the company said.

    Continue reading...

  • Communities are being asked to bid to host the plant, which a state-backed project plans to build by 2040

    Communities in the UK are being asked to bid to host a prototype nuclear fusion power plant, which a government-backed programme plans to build by 2040.

    The site does not need to be near existing nuclear power stations but will need 100 hectares of land and a plentiful water supply. Ministers say the project would bring thousands of skilled jobs and be part of its planned “green industrial revolution” to tackle the climate crisis.

    Continue reading...

  • Highways England scheme to encourage species-rich grasslands could create hundreds of miles of rare habitats after decades of loss

    Native wildflower meadows will line the verges of all new large-scale road projects under an initiative by Highways England, the Guardian can reveal.

    Nodding blue harebells, clusters of yellow kidney vetch and flashes of bird’s-foot-trefoil could soon become the norm on stretches of the road network in England with the infrastructure provider committing to the creation of biodiverse grasslands as standard on all new major schemes.

    Continue reading...

  • Boris Johnson’s advisers did not understand how vital UN Cop26 talks were, former minister tells MPs

    Boris Johnson’s team had a “cavalier attitude” to hosting a vital UN climate summit in the UK, taking the view “they could wing it with a few press releases and that would all be fine” rather than putting serious work into the talks, the sacked former minister originally in charge has said.

    Claire O’Neill was appointed by Johnson to head the Cop26 summit in September 2019 but was summarily dismissed on the eve of the launch of the UK’s presidency in February this year.

    Continue reading...

Eco Health News feeds

Eco Nature News feeds

Feed not found.