Glyphosate row rumbles on

US House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith has accused Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator Gina McCarthy of giving misleading testimony on a study of glyphosate.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer released a report in March 2015 saying glyphosate is "probably carcinogenic", in conflict with many other scientific studies.

In September, the EPA published a paper that said glyphosate is probably not carcinogenic and scheduled a Scientific Advisory Panel meeting for October 18-21, but then the agency postponed it for later this year.

McCarthy told the committee in June that no EPA employees worked on the IARC report. But the Science Committee released two documents that appear to contradict that claim. 

Smith said in a letter to McCarthy: "In light of these contradictions, recent actions taken by EPA to further delay the Science Advisory Panel review for glyphosate do not instill confidence that EPA will fairly assess glyphosate based on sound science."

Meanwhile, IARC advised academic experts on one of its review panels not to disclose documents they were asked to release under United States freedom of information laws.

In a letter, officials from IARC cautioned scientists who worked on a review in 2015 of the weedkiller glyphosate against releasing requested material.

IARC's critics say they want the documents to find out more about how IARC reached its conclusion.

Smith's letter to McCarthy added: "It appears that you have been provided with deliberately misleading information to prepare for your testimony before the Committee, which suggests an attempt by EPA staff to provide untruthful and misleading responses to Congress."

It also said: "That your testimony failed to disclose this information demonstrates that you either purposefully attempted to mislead the Committee or that you have been misled by your staff about the role that EPA officials played in the IARC glyphosate review."

Meanwhile, chemical giant ChemChina's proposed £35m takeover of Syngenta is delayed until 2017 after the EC decided on another review of the deal linked to competition concerns from the Chinese buyers. Syngenta say discussions are ongoing.

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Pest & Disease Factsheet - Plane anthracnose

Pest & Disease Factsheet - Plane anthracnose

Take action to avoid this disease causing dieback and rendering plants unsaleable

Pest and disease management - Phytophthora root rots

Pest and disease management - Phytophthora root rots

Treatments to defend against these pathogens should be used alongside good hygiene practice.

Pest & Disease Factsheet - Needle blights

Pest & Disease Factsheet - Needle blights

Prevalent in wet, humid conditions and particularly on susceptible crops grown under overhead irrigation, tip blights can adversely affect a range of conifer species.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Latest Plant Health Alerts