Even if you can’t stop Monsanto from selling Roundup, you can at least avoid the areas where the herbicide is sprayed – at least if you live in New York City. Ditching glyphosate-doused parks, playgrounds, and picnic areas is now easier with an interactive map available to the public. It has also been presented by a number of activist groups to the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation commissioner, Mitchell J. Silver. Doesn’t your city need a map like this?
The coalition intends to use legal action to stop the spraying of Roundup, but this could be difficult. Through a Freedom of Information Act request, they have learned that the city has applied glyphosate 2,748 times at 2,000 different locations. Data from Central Park and other areas managed by non-profit conservancies have not yet been shared with the public.
The parks department reported 1,300 spraying events in 2013, and the number has doubled since then. Reported overall use of herbicides by volume increased 16 percent in 2014, and glyphosate application by volume saw a 9 percent increase.
The biotech industry claims that glyphosate is applied in tiny amounts to crops, but studies suggest that glyphosate is being used in shocking amounts. The evolution of Roundup-resistant weeds causes increased use of glyphosate. As the Union of Concerned Scientists explains:
“Roundup-susceptible weeds have been replaced by weeds inherently less easy to control with glyphosate. The result has been an increase in overall herbicide use—recently estimated at about 383 million pounds higher than would have been the case without Roundup Ready crops.”
With recent scientific studies indicating that glyphosate is a likely human carcinogen, this is clearly far too much spraying.
Do we really need to be spraying the stuff in parks and picnic areas too?