Gladiators of glyphosate thriving in a mire of email scandals!
Posted on March 25th, 2017

Bodhi Dhanapala Quebec, Canada

March 24, 2017, 8:07 pm

Kamal Wickremasinghe (KW), writing to The Island Newspaper, March 22nd begins by the claim that “Glyphosate of course is the active ingredient of the world’s most widely used herbicide Roundup, known to cause cancer and kidney disease in humans”. This presumptuous statement about cancer and kidney disease is not accepted by even the Dept. of the Environment and Energy, Australia, which is the authority in the adopted home of KG. Nowhere in his long article does KW mention any international organization or reputed scientific body, which has claimed that Glyphosate causes kidney disease. Instead he is going on mere allegations made mostly by a group of Sri Lankan “eco-heroes” who went to town with information claimed to be communicated to them by a “spiritual being” —  Natha Deiyyo. The rest of the article makes much hay out of allegations about email exchanges which allegedly show a symbiosis between the beleaguered US-environmental protection agency (EPA) and Monsanto, the world’s leading agrochemical company. But in a country where even the President, and the outgoing President, and its past Secretary of State, are all linked in allegations of unsavoury symbiosis, linking even with Russian spies, and all unproven, it is staggering that the anti-Gyphosate heroes are now reduced to clutching at “smoking gunmails” which are still being tussled to be brought into the courts!

Of course KG in his adopted country has, as far as I know, worked for many years “pounding the beat “with the Australian police, and not worked with any Australian environmental agency, or an agricultural or scientific endeavor. Hence his forensic imagination transcends his environmental sense, and he is likely to look for intrigue in every corner. He sees intrigue in Glyphosate continuing to “receive the acquiescence of national regulatory bodies … and various international agencies of the European Union (EU), and even the FAO/WHO Joint Meeting on Pesticide Residues (JMPR) over the years, for the continued sale of glyphosate and Roundup. Great!

Totally misunderstanding the report of the International Agency for Research in Cancer (IARC) issued in 2014 and published in 2015, and ignoring the clarification by the JMPR in May 2016, and the critical evaluation of the IARC report by four expert panels, KG asserts that “the worm may have turned in March 2015”. All that the IARC did was to group glyphosate in the same hazard class as red meat, bacon, citronella oil, and cell-phone use as far as the risk in cancer is concerned. There is NOTHING said about kidney disease. Even this “cancer” grouping with red meat etc. was questioned by the four expert committees that reviewed the IARC report and issued the following conclusion in July 2016 in the Journal known as “Critical Reviews in Toxicology”, supplement 1, (2016) by Williams et al.

So, instead of rushing to judgement based on allegations, we need to look at the evidence as was done by the expert committees. Here is what the expert committees concluded:

begin quote/”The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) published a monograph in 2015 concluding that glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic to humans” (Group 2A) based on limited evidence in humans and sufficient evidence in experimental animals. It was also concluded that there was strong evidence of genotoxicity and oxidative stress. Four Expert Panels have been convened for the purpose of conducting a detailed critique of the evidence in light of IARC’s assessment and to review all relevant information pertaining to glyphosate exposure, animal carcinogenicity, genotoxicity, and epidemiologic studies. Two of the Panels (animal bioassay and genetic toxicology) also provided a critique of the IARC position with respect to conclusions made in these areas. The incidences of neoplasms in the animal bioassays were found not to be associated with glyphosate exposure on the basis that they lacked statistical strength, were inconsistent across studies, lacked dose-response relationships, were not associated with preneoplasia, and/or were not plausible from a mechanistic perspective. The overall weight of evidence from the genetic toxicology data supports a conclusion that glyphosate (including GBFs and AMPA) does not pose a genotoxic hazard and therefore, should not be considered support for the classification of glyphosate as a genotoxic carcinogen. The assessment of the epidemiological data found that the data do not support a causal relationship between glyphosate exposure and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma while the data were judged to be too sparse to assess a potential relationship between glyphosate exposure and multiple myeloma. As a result, following the review of the totality of the evidence, the Panels concluded that the data do not support IARC’s conclusion that glyphosate is a “probable human carcinogen” and, consistent with previous regulatory assessments, further concluded that glyphosate is unlikely to pose a carcinogenic risk to humans.” end quote

So, the misunderstandings created by the IACR report were clarified by 2016. In fact, the IACR carried out its mandate of indicating a hazard, but the Glyphosate Gladiators like KW prefer to understand the IACR report as an indication of a health risk, which it is NOT meant to be. Perhaps a good way to explain this is to say that a candle or a can of petrol are fire hazards, but they are by no means a fire risk unless the candle or petrol is lit and misused.

KW being a sleuth who worked for the Australian police, he can easily find out how many Australians died of cancer or kidney disease in Australia, on using glyphosate and if all the deaths have been hushed up! May be there might even be an email scandal and the Australian worm has not yet turned?

He can also turn to New Zealand, his neighbour. According to data quoted by the World Bank, New Zealand uses some 30-40 times the amount of agrochemicals, (and proportionately more glyphosate) per hectare per year than even Australia, leave alone Sri Lanka. At that extreme level of usage, since the toxicity increase with the dose non-linearly or worse, there must be many hundreds of cancer patients and kidney patients in New Zealand. But where have they gone? Surely, that should intrigue any police sleuth!

If the sleuth cannot find any glyphosate impregnated dead bodies even in New Zealand, then he only has to turn to Qatar. This wealthy nation invests 225 times as much as Australia in agrochemicals, and also a proportionately high amount in glyphosate! Again, there is no chronic Kidney disease in Qatar, Newzealand or Australia, but the diseases is actually found in locations like Sri Lanka, Andrah Pradesh, El Salvador and such countries which in comparison use a very small amount of glyphosate compared to Qatar, New Zealand or Malaysia. Sure, if you use the Bradwood-Hill criteria, this anti-correlation of disease with agrochemicals should be enough for any policeman to look elsewhere for the culprit!

Bodhi Dhanapala

Quebec, Canada

2 Responses to “Gladiators of glyphosate thriving in a mire of email scandals!”

  1. AnuD Says:

    Even if Glyphosate in its’ cleanest form may not be toxic, it is very possible very minute quantities of impurities whch accumulated during the synthetic process can be toxic, lethal, carcinogenic or teratogenic etc.,et.,

    Different manufacturers may have different synthetic schemes and purification protocols and that lead to different quantities of different impurities.

    So, both the people who say that Glyphosate is not toxic as well as those who say that glyphosate is toxic must be right.

    Particularly stocks coming to Sri lanka like countries which can not afford to buy highly purified glyphosate may need poorly purified glyphosate which can be full of toxic impurities. I have seem reports which say that Glyphosate has toxic chemiclas in very minute quantities.

  2. Cerberus Says:

    Please look at this article from Dr. Mercola below:

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