Miami Bans Monsanto’s Roundup Weedkiller

March 2, 2019 at 4:49 pm

Miami becomes the first major U.S. city to ban the use of cancer-linked glyphosate herbicide on city streets, sidewalks and parks, blaming it for red tide and algae blooms

Miami city commissioners voted to outlaw the use of

all weedkillers containing glyphosate on all city-owned property Thursday.

City employees and contractors will have to find more eco-friendly alternatives to use on city streets, sidewalks, and parks, and residents are strongly advised to discontinue use of glyphosate on their lawns and gardens.

The ban is effective immediately.

City commissioner Ken Russell sponsored the legislation after looking into the link between the city’s use of herbicides and pesticides and the blue-green algae blooms and red tide that have overwhelmed Miami in recent years.

One of his main concerns was the city’s stormwater outfalls, which pump dirty, unfiltered water from the streets into Biscayne Bay, he told the Miami New Times.

“Water quality issues are so important to the city of Miami, and we can be one of the worst polluters as a municipality,” he said. “We ask for residents to make a change in their habits and that they be conscious of what they put in their gardens, but when I realized the totality of what the city uses at any given time, we had to change our habits.

Previously, the city had been using nearly 5,000 gallons of glyphosate products per year to kill weeds on city streets and sidewalks alone. The city’s new director of resiliency and public works recently put an end to that, but Russell wanted an official glyphosate ban so the policy would extend to other departments, such as parks and recreation and schools.

Monsanto developed glyphosate in 1970 and used it as the main ingredient in its signature weedkiller Roundup. Last year, the agro-chemical giant was ordered to pay $78 million in damages to a California school-groundskeeper who claimed his non-Hodgkins lymphoma was linked to his use of Roundup.

A new study published earlier this month supports that claim. The meta-analysis concluded the overall evidence “supports a compelling link” between exposure toĀ glyphosate-based herbicides and increased risk for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

A high-profile federal trial about that link between Roundup and cancer is currently underway in California.

The World Health Organization classifies glyphosate as a “probable carcinogen.”

The State of California classifies it as a “known carcinogen.”

RELATED: Costco Becomes First Major Retailer to Stop Selling Glyphosate