Cerrejon is one of the biggest coal mines in the world for energy production, in the middle of indigenous Wayuu territory. Today they suffer from high rates of malnutrition and disease.
Glyphosate has been authorised in the EU for another 5 years
Il glifosato è stato autorizzato per altri cinque anni in Europa. I paesi hanno raggiunto la maggioranza qualificata grazie (o a causa del) al cambio di rotta della Germania.
In the end they made it. The European countries of the Plants, Animals, Food and Feed Committee (PAFF) have reached an agreement and voted to renew the authorisation for glyphosate, the world’s most used herbicide and the primary ingredient in the product Roundup, synthetized by agrochemical giant Monsanto. The original proposal of the European Commission was a 10-year renewal, until 2027.
18 countries voted in favour, 9 against (including Italy and France), while only one abstained. The motion needed the approval of 55 per cent of the 28 member states representing at least 65 per cent of the population.
— BMUB (@bmub) 27 novembre 2017
Germany was the country that played a crucial as it allowed reaching a qualified majority after two years of debate. Germany’s vote, among other things, has divided Berlin’s government as Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks said via Twitter that the vote took place without her consent and in contrast to the deal with Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt.
What the European Parliament wanted on glyphosate
- Ban household use now, agricultural use by end 2022
- Risk assessments by the EU Commission must be made public
- EU countries to vote on renewing glyphosate licence on Wednesday
“Today’s vote shows that when we all want to, we are able to share and accept our collective responsibility in decision making,” said Health Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis.
Today’s vote shows that when we all want and put effort in it, we are able to accept and to share our collective responsibility in decision making.#glyphosate
— Vytenis Andriukaitis (@V_Andriukaitis) 27 novembre 2017
Pro-glyphosate and anti-glyphosate
Commenting the vote, Greenpeace EU Food Policy Director Franziska Achterberg said, “The people who are supposed to protect us from dangerous pesticides have failed to do their jobs and betrayed the trust Europeans place in them. The European Commission and most governments have chosen to ignore the warnings of independent scientists, the demands of the European Parliament and the petition signed by more than one million people calling for a glyphosate ban.”
Francesca Belpoggi, head of the Cesare Maltoni cancer research centre of the Istituto Ramazzini based in Bologna, Italy, suggested to re-authorised glyphosate for no more than five years because at that time “we will have the results of our long-term study” that “will clarify the possible risks” and “if early diseases can be linked to serious diseases like cancer”. Also, “in case of negative results, they will clarify all doubts, debate and criticisms on this chemical product”.
The long-term study, started in 2015, also involves the cancer research institute of Genova, the Istituto Superiore di Sanità, the Mount Sinai School of Medicine of New York and the George Washington University.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) of the United Nations has defined glyphosate “probably carcinogenic” for humans as it found a “positive association between glyphosate and non-Hodgkin lymphoma in laboratory animals”.
The European Commission now has to implement PAFF’s decision to regulate glyphosate ahead of 15 December, when its current authorisation expires.
Tuna recovers while the Komodo dragon falls into the endangered list due to climate change. Sharks and rays are also at risk because of overfishing.
The United States follow the European Union’s example in banning the chlorpyrifos pesticide, a hazardous chemical for the development of children.
Kenya’s first National Wildlife Census reveals that there are dangerously few specimens remaining of several iconic species, including the black rhino.
In northeastern Syria, the Euphrates’ water level is so low that five million people risk being left without drinking water.
On World Elephant Day, we tell the story of the Reteti elephant sanctuary in Kenya, the first community owned and run elephant sanctuary in all of Africa that also is hiring indigenous women to be elephant keepers.
On 9th August, the IPCC presented the first part of its sixth Assessment Report. If we don’t act now against the climate crisis, we’ll be forced to live in a state of constant emergency.
From the Mediterranean to Finland, from Canada to Siberia, wildfires have wiped out thousands of hectares of land. The climate crisis also plays its part.
It may be true that some parts of the Amazon rainforest are slowly being turned into a savannah, but it’s crucial not to throw in the towel.