Citizens’ Initiative to Ban Herbicide Cleared for Consideration by EU Lawmakers

(CN) – The European Commission said Monday a citizens’ initiative to ban one of the world’s most widely used herbicides had received more than the 1 million signatures necessary to put the issue before lawmakers.

“Stop Glyphosate” marks only the fourth successful citizens’ initiative since the European Union started the program to better engage EU citizens in governance. The initiative, which aims to ban the active ingredient in herbicides like Monsanto’s Roundup, collected nearly 1.1 million signatures from 22 of the EU’s 28 member states.

The European Citizens’ Initiative requires a minimum of 1 million signatures from at least seven member states.

The commission said it will now invite the “Stop Glyphosate” organizers to present their case to ban the chemical to EU lawmakers and other interested parties. Following that, the commission has three paths it can take: propose legislation to ban glyphosate, act in some other way that achieves the initiative’s goals, or take no action on the initiative – and must explain in detail the reasons for its action.

According to the initiative, exposure to glyphosate-based herbicides have been linked to cancer in humans and has led to degradation of several ecosystems.

The group seeks to reform the EU’s pesticide approval process and to set continent-wide reduction targets for pesticide use.

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