Every spring, we love seeing all the pretty flowers, the leaves growing on the trees and the birds and butterflies fluttering in the air. What we don’t love is seeing weeds.
Weeds can turn a once lovely garden into something that looks unkempt, uncared for and just plain ugly. Why can’t pretty flowers grow as easily as weeds?
The thing about weeds is that you can’t just ignore them. They don’t go away on their own. They just keep growing and growing and getting bigger and bigger.
If you head to the garden supply store to get rid of weeds or to prevent them from growing in the first place, chances are you might buy (or might have bought at one time) a weed killer that contains glyphosate, a chemical that was first used in Bayer’s Roundup.
Over the past few years, this chemical has been targeted as potentially causing cancer. Outraged citizens have even banded together to prevent cities from spraying it on public parks, playgrounds and anywhere else that children play.
There have been multiple court cases where people who have cancer claimed that they got cancer because of the chemical in Roundup. In fact, one man in California was awarded $289 million in August 2018, but the total has been reduced to $78 million. Bayer wants their money back.
While the World Health Organization said that glyphosate was “probably carcinogenic to humans” back in 2015, in 2017, the EPA said that the chemical was probably not carcinogenic to humans.
Now, in 2019, the EPA found geological risk with glyphosate but is reaffirming that it does not cause cancer. They EPA said in a statement, “EPA continues to find that there are no risks to public health when glyphosate is used in accordance with its current label and that glyphosate is not a carcinogen.”
Not everyone agrees with the EPA’s findings. Nathan Donley is a senior scientist at the environmental group Center for Biological Diversity, and he said, “American consumers cannot trust the EPA assessment of glyphosate’s safety.”
What do you use to kill weeds? Do you think Roundup is safe to use?