Earlier this month, two United Nations (UN) experts called for a comprehensive global treaty to not only regulate but actually phase out toxic pesticides in farming, and to move food production across the world toward more sustainable agricultural practices.
This is a significant change in stance that can — and hopefully will — have far-reaching consequences.
UN Calls for Global Treaty to Promote Sustainable Farming Without Toxic Pesticides
The two experts, Hilal Elver, the UN’s special rapporteur on the right to food and Baskut Tuncak, the special rapporteur on toxics, shared research with the Human Rights Council in Geneva showing pesticides are responsible for 200,000 acute poisoning deaths each year.
Chronic exposure has been linked to cancer, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, hormone disruption, developmental disorders and sterility. As reported by Sustainable Pulse:12
“The experts particularly emphasized the obligation of States to protect the rights of children from hazardous pesticides … The experts warn that certain pesticides can persist in the environment for decades and pose a threat to the entire ecological system on which food production depends …
The experts say the use of neonicotinoid pesticides is particularly worrying because they are accused of being responsible for a systematic collapse in the number of bees around the world. Such a collapse, they say, threatens the very basis of agriculture as 71 percent of crop species are bee-pollinated.