Time running out as glyphosate vote delayed once again

The vote on the re-authorisation of glyphosate has been delayed once again as EU member states couldn’t reach a qualified majority.

This means that there is just over one month to go before glyphosate’s current approval expires on December 15, 2017.

The debate over glyphosate – which is the key ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup – has been raging on for months now. An 18-month extension was granted by the EU in June 2016 so further scientific studies could be carried out.

This is the second time in the space of a month that a vote on glyphosate by EU member states has failed to reach a qualified majority. The vote focused on the renewal of glyphosate for the next five years.

It is believed that Ireland, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Spain, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Netherlands, Slovenia, Slovakia, Finland, Sweden and the UK all voted in favour of the re-authorisation.

Out of the remaining member states, nine voted against the renewal while five abstained. Belgium, Germany, Poland, Portugal and Romania are all thought to have abstained from the vote.

Leading up to today’s vote, the European Crop Protection Agency (ECPA) claimed that 3,300 peer-reviewed studies show that glyphosate is not carcinogenic and safe to us.

Reacting to the vote, it outlined that it was disappointed by the decision to postpone the vote. It claims that science points towards a 15-year approval.

Last month, the European Parliament voted to back a full ban on glyphosate-based herbicides by December 2022. A total of 355 MEPs voted in favour of a ban, with 204 against and 111 abstentions.

As well as voting in favour of a full ban, the parliament was of the opinion that the EU should draw up plans to phase out glyphosae – starting with a complete ban on household use and a ban in use for farming when biological alternatives work well for weed control.

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