Image | Rijksmuseum | Portrait-of-Alida-Christina-Assink, Jan-Adam-Kruseman,-1833-Part-Only
Pesticides kill. That’s why we created them. Little combat chemical molecules that wage war on plants, worms, insects, rats or bugs. And the orders are loud and clear – take no prisoners. The amassing of this nanoscopic army of commandos ironically began around the time of the second world war. Today their numbers are so hard to imagine; it would give Einstein’s brain, pause.
This article is the first in a series that both broadly and deeply investigates. How is increasing human exposure to pesticides affecting health (especially children and future generations)? Are current models of pesticide use and production conducive for sustained food production? Is the all-important rich biodiversity of soil microbial life being decimated?
Are regulations that are designed to protect us from harmful toxic chemical exposures adequate? Are current toxicology risk assessment models out of date in the current climate of multiple chemical exposures? And more and more, but most importantly – what can we do as individuals and a community.
We will address these questions and more and seek answers during these narratives.
Telling the Story
To help tell this story we will look at two veterans of this nanoscopic army, currently on trial for causing grievous bodily harm (cancer), but still roaming free. Roundup and its muscular sidekick, glyphosate, have often been vilified in the court of public opinion (commercial herbicide and it’s active ingredient).
However, this is not a Spanish inquisition and to help the public, that’s you and me, better understand the potential dangers of pesticides in general, we will use facts, data and healthy curiosity (aka science) and the whole surreptitious army as subjects to tell this story.
In the meantime, let’s bring the main character on stage. In April 2015, glyphosate was declared a probable human carcinogen by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Since then, a global conflict of biblical proportions has erupted that pits world government authorities against multinational corporations.
Some, like the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), say glyphosate is harmless. The WHO, however, has not backed down and in March 2016 published a Q&A document that further clarified that glyphosate alone is probably carcinogenic to humans (even without the other chemicals also present in Roundup).
Saftey of pesticides now being re-evaluated
Councils and state governments all over the world are now reevaluating public safety as a result. In Australia, the AVPMA decides which pesticides are safe to use as directed and have indicated that they too are reevaluating the risks to the public and will come to a decision around May 2016. That’s more than a year after the WHO cancer warning. (update – 2018 – the APVMA have basically ignored the WHO warning and continue to register and endorse Glyphosate)
Buried deep within this controversy is another layer of drama that unfolds real disregard for human and environmental health using farmer manipulation so as to continue an outdated and non-sustainable food production system for vast financial gain.
We have been researching, interviewing and following events over the past few months in preparation for this investigative series. With global terrorism and bombings tragically taking lives and demanding our attention, it is easy not to notice the assault of the nanoscopic army upon our daily lives. Indications so far are that this stealth pummel is not to be ignored.
The captivating narrative becomes clearer as the series of articles unfold. Follow us on the Toxno facebook page.
How did this toxic mayhem start? Is it affecting my health and my children? What do I need to do about it? You can follow the series by subscribing to our mailing list on the right.