ISIS Report 02/12/15
Declaration of Physicians in Crop-sprayed Towns in Argentina at 3rd National Congress
Faculty of Medicine, University of Buenos
Aires, Buenos Aires, 17 October 2015
Original Publication: http://www.reduas.com.ar/declaration-of-the-3rd-national-congress-of-physicians-in-the-crop-sprayed-towns/#more-1541
Independent Scientists Manifesto on Glyphosate here:
Five years after the first
meeting at the Faculty of Medical Sciences of Córdoba, we - scientists,
doctors and members of health teams from sprayed villages of Argentina -gathered
in the Aula Magna of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Buenos Aires
(UBA), to verify that what we said then is emphatically true and getting worse
by the day. The current system of agricultural production in the country
pollutes the environment and our food, sickening and killing human populations
in agricultural areas.
last 25 years, the consumption of pesticides increased by 983 % (from 38 to 370
million kilos), while the cultivated area increased by 50 % (from 20 million ha
to 30 million ha). A production system based on the systematic application of
agricultural poisons means, inevitably, that nature responds by adapting,
forcing farmers to apply greater quantities of pesticides in the field to
achieve the same objectives. Over the years a system has been created by and
for sellers of pesticides, who every year increase their net sales (in 2015 the
increase was 9%) while our patients, too, year after year are being exposed to
this pesticide pollution more and more.
is no doubt that the massive and growing exposure to pesticides changed the
disease profile of Argentina’s rural populations and that cancer is the leading
cause of death among them (and the worst way to die).
at the congress show studies at different scales, which highlight a consistent
pattern of toxicity. From small towns to larger populations at the provincial
level (as in Chaco and Córdoba) or national level, different levels of exposure
to glyphosate or agricultural poisons in general are compared, showing that
reproductive health is affected by increases in spontaneous abortions and birth
defects. Also increased are endocrine disorders such
as hypothyroidism, neurological disorders or cognitive development problems and
soaring of cancer rates - a tripling of incidence, prevalence and mortality -
which are directly related to pesticide exposure. In parallel, data from
studies in experimental models show that the genotoxicity of glyphosate
and other pesticides is an underlying biological mechanism that explains its
relationship with disease that doctors have found in our patients. Furthermore, genotoxicity has been verified in agricultural
populations (adults and children) exposed to pesticides, while being absent in
populations that are not fumigated.
of soya planted left and distribution of cancer mortality in Cordoba and Santa
Fe, according Minagria and provincial Ministry of Health
During 2015, the
International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC WHO) recognized the human
carcinogenicity of several pesticides, including glyphosate. This is the most
widely used pesticide in the world and Argentina consumed 240 million kilos in
the last year generating a potential average exposure of 6 kilos per person per year, the highest in the world.
Glyphosate is bought and stored anywhere and is applied without any restriction
over schools, neighbourhoods, streets and villages, subjecting people to indiscriminate
and unnecessary exposure.
pollution with toxic chemicals and even carcinogens in food we bring to cities
is increasing. For example, it was found that one serving of a
common salad contains about 600 µg of agrochemicals; and now we know that even
cotton swabs, gauze, panty liners and tampons marketed in our country contain
glyphosate. There are no maximum residue limits for chemicals that are safe
when they cause cancer, its absolute absence should be guaranteed.
The system of
producing food in our society (field crops with poisons and industrial
manufacturing) results in the destruction of native forests, land
desertification, depletion and pollution of soil, water from streams and
rivers, expulsion and eviction of indigenous populations, peasants and family
farmers, exacerbates climate change and sprays hundreds of schools with
children inside. It is strongly promulgated in the
production and consumption of highly processed food including salt, sugar, fats
and compounds such as soy lecithin, corn syrup, high fructose, dyes,
flavourings and others that today international agencies state as responsible
for chronic, non-communicable diseases as obesity, diabetes and Alzheimer’s
disease. These fill the supermarkets, offered in an eye-catching way geared
especially to vulnerable populations and especially children, in violation of
All these elements
in the field of public health are a warning to the toxic nature of agriculture
in general and GM agriculture in particular, they have grown in our country as
a result of the immense influence of large multinational pesticide companies
like Monsanto, Bayer Syngenta, Down, Dupont, etc., who are just looking to
increase their sales regardless of the damage to environmental and public
health from this system.
Our diagnosis of
socio-environmental health is complemented by crucial immediate and long-term
action. We demand the authorities of the national and provincial state
recognize the requests made in previous Congresses and in the “Yes to Life No
to Glyphosate Campaign” of the Federation of Health Professionals and the
Andres Carrasco Collective.
defend the human right to life, a healthy life and a healthy environment we demand:
1. Comprehensive ban on aerial
spraying in the country with any kind of agrochemicals. The levels of pollution
generated is unacceptable for the environment and human health.
2. Prohibition of all
pesticides IARC-WHO recognized as human carcinogens grades 1, 2A and 2B, especially
There is no need to justify the risk of generating cancer in people exposed
environmentally or through contaminated food.
3. While the near total ban on glyphosate
term is reached, it is urgent to get a reclassification to red tag (currently
green label) and immediately prevent its free commercialization
and application in and near populated areas and schools.
4. Prohibition of all “highly
hazardous pesticides,” according to WHO and FAO, many are already banned in
their countries of origin but are marketed in ours.
5. Ban on any spraying around 1
000 meters from villages and schools, the presence and movement of machines to
spray (mosquitoes) in urban areas and the existence of deposits of pesticides
within towns and neighbourhoods of cities.
6. Generating public policies
that discourage the use of poisons in farming and food production, recognizing
the toxic nature thereof. It is necessary to question the current model of
agroindustrial and transgenic production, and instead look for systems that
allow for social and cultural integration and defence and reproduction of
ecological conditions of our environment. It is possible through state action
to decrease the levels pesticide use in our country as demonstrated by
experiences in other countries, to promote agro-ecology, local food consumption
and defence of food security.
officials over the years have continued trying to hide the “side effects” of
the agricultural production model, demonstrating its complicity and alignment
with the interests of ethically questionable multinational companies. This
situation led us to require the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of
the Organisation of American States in the request for an injunction to protect
the right to health and life of the population environmentally exposed to
pesticides, especially their children.
This is not only an Argentine problem, identical situations exist
in other countries with similar results in Brazil, Uruguay, Central America,
Paraguay, etc. Everywhere there is growing resistance to toxic agriculture and
honest doctors and scientists support these struggles with their diagnoses and
providing technical studies.
that seek to prioritize values such as health and the environment over economic and commercial
interests of large biotech companies and sowing pools [a type of speculative
investment fund for large-scale production of cereals in Argentina] in
defence of human rights violated by heavily extractive productivist policies
that destroy the environment into a collective health crisis.
Dr. Medardo Avila-Vazquez , Lic. Miryam
Gorban; Presidents of National Congress Of Physicians of Crop -Sprayed Towns; Prof.
Sergio Provenzano, Dean of Faculty of Medicine UBA
Translated by Dr Eva Sirinathsinghji
There are 4 comments on this article so far. Add your comment
|Helene Wilkie Comment left 3rd December 2015 08:08:38|
I would hope that those readers who may have been unsympathetic toward Hugo Chavez, for one reason or another, could now appreciate why he was totally against the importation and use of GMOs and their necessary chemicals.
He was not to be fooled. Hats off to him.
|dhinds Comment left 3rd December 2015 08:08:25|
If Monsanto et. al is allowed to achieve their goals, the quality of life on this planet will plummet to unendurable levels and the legacy of homo sapiens will be the destruction of the biosphere and it's life support systems.
Their goals can be achieved only if they are able to continue subverting governments and successfully manipulating public policy creation. This means that the current crop of corrupt politicians mas be defeated and environmentally and socially responsible legislators must take their place. This is what each and everyone of us must do in order to change the course of history, preserve the Earth for beneficial organisms and assure that life is worth living.
|Rory Short Comment left 3rd December 2015 11:11:57|
When a society lets profits have priority over everything else then that society inevitably self-destructs.
|David Collier Comment left 6th December 2015 22:10:42|
Only when the hip pocket nerve or more significantly the death of one's own children nerve of the rich are stimulated will things change for the better. This implies widespread environmental disaster(s).
In this context the rich are of course more insulated than others; the poor most vulnerable.
Karma applies: but how many are really aware of this? Answer: only those who have become awake, a small minority it seems.