EPA Approves Deadly New Herbicide, Earthjustice Responds

Legal options being explored as approval gives sanction for 2,4-D use on corn, soy crops


Betsy Lopez-Wagner, Earthjustice (415) 217-2159

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved today the use of a deadly new herbicide cocktail, Dow’s Enlist Duo, a blend of glyphosate and 2,4-D.

The approval opens the floodgates for the new herbicide to be used on corn and soy crops genetically engineered to resist the herbicide’s effects. The creation of 2,4-D-resistant crops and EPA’s approval of Enlist Duo for use on them is the result of an overuse of glyphosate, an ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, on the previous generation of genetically engineered crops created to resist glyphosate’s effects. That overuse caused tens of millions of acres of agricultural land to become infested with glyphosate-resistant super weeds, which farmers now want to kill with the more toxic 2,4-D, one of the ingredients in "Agent Orange."

Statement from Earthjustice attorney Paul Achitoff:

"It's very disappointing that EPA is giving the green light to a massive increase in use of 2,4-D, which has been linked to some very serious illnesses, without adequately assessing the impacts on public health.

“EPA hasn't bothered to consult the expert agencies about the herbicide's effects on endangered plants and animals, instead it made the absurd assumption it will have no effect at all. This heedless action merely perpetuates the endless cycle of more genetically engineered crops leading to more pesticide use, leading to more of the same. We are examining all legal options."

A crop duster sprays pesticides over a farmfield.
A crop duster sprays pesticides over a farmfield. (Denton Rumsey / Shutterstock)

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