Tennessee Banning Common Pesticide

Human exposure to certain pesticides can worsen health, and cause a number of diseases. A Reuters article, posted on Reddit explains how Tennessee has enforced new regulations on the use of a Monsanto pesticide, Dicamba. This pesticide is a weed killer, and also used for pest control systems, but unfortunately, should only be used on genetically modified crops.

Four states have now banned Dicamba, including Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, and now Tennessee. Many farmers today plant genetically modified crops that can withstand pesticides, but one of the problems with spraying pesticides is the drifting to nearby communities. This drifting causes damages to neighbor crops that are not genetically modified, and farmers are now embroiled in lawsuits. And it’s not just farming communities, but residential neighbors are sustaining damages on their small vegetable gardens and lush landscapes. The results are that these small vegetable gardens are no longer viable, and create additional costs.

A Missouri farmer, Hunter Raffety says “We’ve sustained acres of damage across the soybeans we farm.” Monsanto’s spokesman and chief technology officer, Robb Fraley blames the problem on user error, explaining that farmers are not handling the dicamba pesticide correctly, or not following application instructions. He also commented that farmers could also be purchasing cheaper and older formulas of dicamba that are more likely to drift. According to Chris Chinn, the Missouri Director of Agriculture, the companies producing these weed killers with dicamba pesticide have agreed to new safeguards.

In the United States, there are approximately 80,000 registered chemicals utilized, but most of us have no idea about the amount of pesticides used. And in the real world,however, most of these pesticides are used in combination with other chemical compounds. Unfortunately, we don’t have a clue about the synergies between these chemicals, and how they can affect us in our homes.

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