I once read an interview with legendary fiction writer Stephen King in which he told the interviewer that he simply reads the newspaper to get ideas for his novels, declaring that truth was far scarier than fiction. After reading about the latest development in the lawsuits against Monsanto, I’m inclined to agree with him.
As part of the 3rd cancer trial facing Monsanto (now owned by Bayer AG), new emails were released that showed Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials may have colluded with Monsanto to help slow the release of the dangers of the pesticide from the public. According to the documents and testimony, Monsanto apparently asked the government agency to slow down their safety review of the company’s top-selling herbicide, RoundUp. According to the documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, not only did the government agree to slow the safety review, EPA officials also helped the company by giving them consistent updates.
In early 2015, the government agency seems to have started working in conjunction with Monsanto to stall toxicology tests on glyphosate (the main ingredient in RoundUp) conducted by a unit of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
This isn’t the first time that the EPA may have thwarted efforts to keep the public safe from toxic glyphosate and other harmful pesticides. An earlier court case against Monsanto revealed evidence that the Environmental Protection Agency knew glyphosate was a probable carcinogen nearly thirty-five years ago but approved it for use anyway.
Even outside of the alleged collusion, there has been doubt as to whether the EPA has actually been doing enough to protect the public from the chemical that has been dubbed a “probable carcinogen” by the World Health Organization.
That’s because a recent study called The Global Glyphosate Study, found that the so-called “safe” amounts of glyphosate set by the United States government agency aren’t actually safe at all. Instead the EPA’s “safe” levels were found to damage genetic material and cause harmful imbalances in the microbiome, according to the study authors: Italy’s Ramazzini Institute in partnership with the University of Bologna, the Genoa Hospital San Martino, the Italian National Institue of Health, Mount Sinai in New York and George Washington University.
The term “microbiome” refers to the total of all microbial life that live in a human being, which is largely made up of beneficial bacteria and other beneficial microbes. Every person and living thing has a unique microbiome, similar to a microbial fingerprint.
And, that’s just the beginning of the government agency’s seeming collusion with chemical corporations. Two years ago, the agency reversed its plan to ban another toxic pesticide known as chlorpyrifos after a meeting with Dow Chemical’s CEO, Andrew Liveris.
Finally, a federal court intervened and ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to ban the toxic pesticide chlorpyrifos, yet even after the court order, the agency in its seeming egomania simply declared that it was reviewing the decision. The judge admonished the EPA for “having stalled on banning chlorpyrifos,” and ordered that all commercial registrations for chlorpyrifos be cancelled or revoked within 60 days.
Once again, the agency demonstrated a lack of integrity and decency, while abdicating its responsibility to the public in keeping them safe from brain-damaging pesticides like chlorpyrifos and probable carcinogen, glyphosate.
Why does the EPA seem hell-bent on allowing chemical corporations to run roughshod over the human right to health and safety, while the same corporations rack up billions in profits? The only answer I can think of is: cold, hard cash. Of course, I can’t prove it, but I can’t think of any other reason why the EPA would shirk its basic responsibility to Americans—a responsibility that couldn’t be any clearer than the name it sports: “Environmental Protection Agency.” After all, human beings constitute part of the environment that warrants protection.
It’s time the EPA was held accountable. Their current stall tactics and unwillingness to protect the public make them complicit in the deaths and suffering of countless people exposed to these toxic chemicals. Perhaps the agency should be named in the lawsuits alleging that glyphosate caused peoples’ cancer? It’s sad that the people who have alleged that Monsanto’s RoundUp caused their terminal cancer are forced to use their dying days to hold the company accountable, when there is a government agency that should have protected them in the first place.
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Dr. Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM shares her food growing, cooking, and other food self-sufficiency adventures at FoodHouseProject.com. She is the publisher of the free e-newsletter World’s Healthiest News, founder of Scent-sational Wellness, and an international best-selling and 20-time published book author whose works include: Be Your Own Herbalist: Essential Herbs for Health, Beauty, & Cooking. Follow her work.