Thursday, November 15, 2018


Back in the day the "dirty" businesses were drugs and prostitution. Maybe we are beginning the age where chemical companies and their products may be recognized as potentially "dirty" businesses. In yesterday's Waterloo Region Record, page C7 there is an article apparently from the Wall Street Journal titled "Bayer hit by more lawsuits over Roundup weed killer". The sub-title is "9,300 suits pending at the end of October, compared with 8,700 at the end of August".

As mentioned here yesterday the active ingredient in Roundup is Glyphosate and the International Agency for research on Cancer (IARC) according to this article classified glyphosate "as likely having the potential to cause cancer". I have read other slightly different descriptions of the IARC's findings, more along the line of glyphosate is a probable or likely carcinogen. Either way it would be foolish if not negligent not to take steps to lessen human exposure to this chemical.

Bayer unsurprisingly have lost share value with various health pronouncements regarding glyphosate. It was Bayer's recent takeover of glyphosate manufacturer Monsanto that started the ball rolling. That was followed by a huge losing case for Monsanto in the U.S. followed by the release of the Monsanto papers. The question in my mind is will Bayer weather the storm and will it affect Lanxess Canada here in Elmira. Lanxess and their partners in pollution, the Ontario Ministry of Environment, would like to wrap things up here, remediation wise. This includes both the groundwater underneath Elmira as well as the very necessary but expensive, if done properly, cleanup of the Canagagigue Creek.

The other question is whether ubiquitous glyphosate, due to decades of Roundup use, found in our local groundwater will cause significant changes in regional water treatment and reporting of glyphosate presence.

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