Monsanto wants Congress to strip your community of the right to ban toxic pesticides.
TAKE ACTION: Tell your U.S. Senators and Representative to get Monsanto’s toxic tricks out of the Farm Bill. Protect local rights to ban dangerous pesticides!
Would you like your local government to ban Monsanto’s carcinogenic Roundup herbicide?
Your local government has had that power since 1991, when the Supreme Court ruled that the Federal law regulating the manufacture, sale and use of pesticides permitted local governments to impose more stringent regulations of their own.
Ever since, Monsanto has been pressuring Congress to strip local governments of that right.
In 2017, Monsanto’s parent company, Bayer, spent $14,910,000 lobbying Congress. In the last Congressional cycle (2016), Monsanto’s political action committee gave $926,466 to congressional campaigns.
In exchange, the House of Representatives’ version of the Farm Bill, written by House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (who has taken $10,000 from Monsanto this year) includes language that would prohibit local governments from restricting pesticide use on private property.
If the Farm Bill conference committee decides to include this provision in the final version of the Farm Bill, local pesticide bans in two states, Maine and Maryland, would be overturned and could never be attempted again anywhere in the country.
Thirty towns and cities in Maine have enacted local ordinances to control pesticide use.
“If you squeeze the trigger on a bottle of Roundup in South Portland [Maine] this summer, you’ll be breaking the law,” reports Ray Routhier for the Portland Press Herald. An ordinance severely restricting synthetic pesticides on private property took effect there in May. A similar law will be enforced in nearby Portland in July 2019.
Instead of pesticides, lawn service companies and home gardeners are adopting organic management techniques, starting with improving soil health, to protect lawns and gardens from insects and weeds.
Monsanto’s toxic trick would also overturn local “Safe Grow” laws banning pesticides in Takoma Park and Montgomery County, Maryland.
Why don’t more localities ban pesticides on private property? The 1991 Supreme Court decision protected local governments from federal preemption, but not state preemption. So in 43 states, Monsanto was able to use state laws to block local pesticide bans.
Only Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Nevada, Utah and Vermont still let local governments regulate pesticides. But that’s seven states too many for Monsanto. Plus, the Biotech Bully is worried that number could grow if more states were to pass laws restoring local control over pesticides.
That’s why getting Congress to include Monsanto’s toxic trick in the Farm Bill is so important to Monsanto.
We have to fight back!
Contact your Congress members. Let them know that legislation that takes away local rights to regulate pesticides is undemocratic and dangerous!