Con­tro­ver­sial weed-killer gets 18-month EU ex­ten­sion

Daily Trust - - GOLDEN HARVEST -

The Euro­pean Com­mis­sion has de­cided to ex­tend the li­cence of glyphosate, found in Mon­santo’s weed-killer, Roundup, by 18 months. The chem­i­cal’s 15-year li­cence was to ex­pire on June 30 this year.

Glyphosate is used widely in agri­cul­ture, forestry, ur­ban and home ap­pli­ca­tions. Its use has been sur­rounded by much de­bate due to safety con­cerns. The WHO’s In­ter­na­tional Agency for Re­search on Cancer (IARC) has de­clared glyphosate as “prob­a­ble” car­cino­gene to hu­mans.

The com­mis­sion will fol­low our le­gal obli­ga­tion. We know very well that we have a dead­line of June 30. We will adopt an ex­ten­sion for glyphosate of 18 months,” Health Com­mis­sioner Vyte­nis An­driukaitis told a news con­fer­ence.

The Euro­pean Com­mis­sion was left with no op­tion but to ex­tend the li­cence of glyphosate by 18 months af­ter ma­jor mem­ber states-France, Ger­many and Italy-ab­stained from vot­ing on the is­sue. The com­mis­sion had pro­posed to ex­tend the au­tho­ri­sa­tion of glyphosate un­til the Euro­pean Chem­i­cals Agency could present its own as­sess­ment of the ef­fects of the chem­i­cal.

Ger­many ab­stained from vot­ing with its own gov­ern­ment be­ing split over the use of glyphosate. France’s en­vi­ron­ment min­is­ter Sé­golène Royal had openly de­clared that the coun­try would “hold firm against glyphosate”, but stayed away from the vote. Malta was the only coun­try to vote against the pro­posal and those that voted in favour of the ex­ten­sion were not enough to ful­fil the 55 per cent pop­u­la­tion thresh­old. With no clear de­ci­sion, the com­mis­sion had to go ahead with the ex­ten­sion.

Culled from down­

Com­piled by Sa­fina Buhari

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