We request the urgent reassessment of glyphosate and glyphosate-based herbicides in the interests of New Zealanders’ health, and the health of our environment.
Significant scientific evidence has shown that:This afternoon, prominent skeptic Grant Jacobs used his SciBlog slot to hit back. Coming from a scientist it's a fascinating post because the science part of it is limited to contesting the second half of point 2 above. It is silent on all of the other points.
We request that glyphosate be phased out from all uses.
- Glyphosate affects bacteria’s response to antibiotics
- Glyphosate damages hormones and is a probable carcinogen
- Glyphosate is often combined in weed killers with other active ingredients that are more toxic to animals and people than glyphosate by itself
- When it enters waterways, glyphosate harms fish and other aquatic animals
- Glyphosate negatively affects the natural behaviour of bees, causing them to forget where their hives are
- Glyphosate leaches into groundwater
- We don’t know what a safe level of glyphosate is, as it has never been assessed by regulators at sub-lethal levels.
There's a lot of non-science padding out those almost 2000 words though and it's mostly ad-hominem, attacking the researcher and the person commissioning the research for being insufficiently saintly (scientific) and also attacking the idea as not "evidence based". This is not what I'd expect from a science journalist, but Grant isn't one of them: he's a science communicator. There is an important difference.
I'll keep my eyes open for scientific rebuttal of the above points but I have updated my prior in the light of Grant's post. If scientists have serious counterarguments to the other 6 and a half points I'd have expected Grant to cite them.