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PAN Europe - Pesticide Chlorpyrifos may exceed safe levels

Pesticide Action Network Europe (PAN) urges Tonio Borg, EU Commissioner for Health to choose a full ban on the pesticide Chlorpyrifos since it is the only way to prevent further damage.

In 2012 the previous EU Commissioner for Health requested a review of the insecticide and nerve poison Chlorpyrifos because of new evidence put forward by academic studies showing harmful effects caused by the pesticide.

Now the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) have published a review which concludes that Chlorpyrifos is much more toxic than previously thought and advises the EU Commission to make the health standards more strict.

Already in 2011 the US Environmental Protection Agency (US-EPA) decided to change health standards for Chlorpyrifos resulting in a 30 times stricter standard than the one in Europe. With the newly proposed health standards, it has been shown that grapes sprayed with Chlorpyrifos will exceed safe acute levels by a factor up to 50. Therefore it is now up to EU Commissioner Borg to propose a revision of the approval of Chlorpyrifos.

PAN Europe is asking for a full ban as the extreme toxicity cannot be contained at all. Additionally other information from academic studies on Chlorpyrifos such as clear evidence for genotoxicity and endocrine disrupting should be considered by the EU Commission and would require a ban on its own. The nerve poisoning effect is only one of the worrying effects of Chlorpyrifos.

Originally posted on 26 June 2014

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