EU Plant Law Upheld in Roundup-Defacement Skirmish

(CN) – The European Court of Justice dealt a blow Tuesday to the defense of French environmentalists who say they had a duty to damage cans of Roundup because of the insufficient warnings about weedkiller containing glyphosate.

Mathieu Blaise and 19 others raised the defense before the Foix Criminal Court where they are charged with defacing private property in Ariège, France.

Invoking the doctrine of necessity, Blaise and his co-defendants contend that their aim was to protect public health. They say that Roundup is being sold without sufficient warnings about the harm of glyphosate, so they had a duty to alert the shops whose Roundup they damaged, as well as their customers.

The court in Foix thus invited Europe’s top court to weigh in on whether “EU legislation is capable of fully ensuring the protection of the human population.”

On Tuesday, the court’s grand chamber delivered a resounding endorsement of the EU directive.

“It does not appear that Regulation No 1107/2009 is vitiated by a manifest error of assessment in that it provides that the tests, studies and analyses necessary in the procedures for approval of an active substance and for authorization of a plant protection product are to be submitted by the applicant, but does not systematically require that an independent counter-analysis be carried out,” the ruling states.

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