It's Not What Plants Crave

RECEIVED Wed., April 10, 2019

Dear Editor,
    City Council banned the use of neonicotinoids and chlorpyrifos-based pesticides on city property but allowed glyphosate (Roundup) to continue to be used. Independent scientific evidence indicates that glyphosate herbicides and glyphosate-tolerant crops are harmful to humans and animals. Crops now contain residual levels over what is considered “safe” directly exposing livestock and the rest of us to glyphosate. Lawsuits against Bayer/Monsanto are awarding plaintiffs because the herbicide caused their non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
    Our mayor signed a monarch pledge to restore and enhance habitat for monarch butterflies. The prevalent use of Roundup ready crops has been directly linked to the decline in the monarch population. City departments have long argued that there is no viable alternative to glyphosate due to lack of personnel. There are very affordable and effective alternatives, including girdling invasive species, mechanical or manual removal, the use of cardboard and heavy mulch, solar sterilization and more. All products containing glyphosate have been banned in many countries and municipalities, most recently the city of Miami. The fact is the pervasive use of this chemical is a direct threat to our health and the health of future generations.
    Urge City Council to ban the use of glyphosate herbicides on public lands and city property and go organic in your own home. It’s time for Austin to truly be “green” and ban the use of glyphosate.
Elizabeth McVeety
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