We just struck a huge blow against Monsanto. An EU vote scheduled for this week to re-approve Roundup chemical glyphosate had to be cancelled last minute due to lack of support from governments like France, Italy, Germany and the Netherlands. Glyphosate probably causes cancer to humans, and it's certainly harmful to the environment.
Even a week ago people said we couldn't possibly make our voices heard over the noise from industry and scientists with chemical industry ties. But we did it, and it's even made us stronger than before!
This is the second time that the European Commission has had to cancel the vote due to lack of buy-in from governments. They're desperate now, because glyphosate's current license is set to expire at the end of June. Thanks to our collective power, it looks like the tides might finally be turning against Monsanto and glyphosate.
The European Commission might push another proposal as early as next week. So we need to double our efforts again and spread the message as far as possible.
A spokesperson from the Commission said Friday: "If no decision is taken before 30 June, glyphosate will be no longer authorised in the EU and member states will have to withdraw authorisations for all glyphosate based products.” The prize of a glyphosate-free future is within reach!
Last month, MEPs said there should be a ban of glyphosate for hobby gardeners, in public parks and playgrounds, and in agricultural pre-harvest applications -- proof that lawmakers are coming to understand the dangers of Monsanto's favorite pesticide. Yet, the Commission keeps ploughing ahead, while independent experts agree we need an outright ban in order to protect against contamination of our food, water, and soil.
On Tuesday we delivered our petition with 222,000 signatures from all over Europe to the Netherlands government. The MPs who received our petition watched with amazement on their phones as the counter on our website kept going up and up. By the end of the day almost 50,000 more people had signed to say "no" to glyphosate. And more than 44,000 SumOfUs members in Germany also came together to call on their government to oppose the Commission's proposal. It looks like our efforts helped, as both the Netherlands and Germany decided not to lend their support to the Commission's proposal on Thursday -- even after Ministers in both governments had said last week that they'd vote yes.
Two times in a row, EU member states have refused to back the European Commission's reckless proposal to relicense glyphosate. It's time for the Commission to understand that Europe doesn't want glyphosate, plain and simple.