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									  Pesticide Information for the
Royal Commission On Pollution

          Buffer Zones
        Notification of Use
        The Right to Know
      How Safe is the Science?
Decisions Made By DEFRA
 No Science to support Buffer Zones

A “Trial Area” only for Notification

  Third Parties to Control Access to
Information about the Pesticides Used
      Was DEFRA Correct?
• What is regarded as scientific evidence?

• Are adverse health effects known?

• Do the monitoring systems work?

• Is evidence being ignored?
    Scientific Evidence Includes
• Recognised symptoms of pesticide exposure
• Recognised properties of pesticides
• Recognised routes of exposure
• Peer reviewed reports of drift effects
• Officially recognised incident confirmation
• Incidents of linked illness reported to the
  authorities but not officially recognised
• Medical records of induced symptoms
• Known risks to vulnerable individuals
    Pesticide Induced Symptoms
•   Restricted breath/asthma     •   Muscle pain/tremors
•   Digestive upsets/diarrhoea   •   Memory loss
•   Heart rate irregularity      •   Visual disturbance
•   Sweating/skin lesions        •   Chemical sensitivity
•   Running nose/eyes/saliva     •   Cognitive defects
•   Sore throat/voice loss       •   Neurological diseases
•   Headaches/anxiety            •   Foetal abnormalities
•   Joint/bone disorders         •   Cancers
•   Diabetes/hypoglycaemia       •   Hormone disruption
            Pesticides Include
•   Arsenicals
•   Carbamates
•   Organochlorines
•   Organophosphates
•   Pyrethrins and Pyrethroids
•   Genetically Modified toxins
•   Acids, such as Sulphuric Acid
•   Hormone disrupters
•   Co-formulants which increase toxicity
           Routes Of Exposure
•   Direct contact with pesticide or packaging
•   Exposure to spray drift
•   Exposure to volatile pesticide vapour releases
•   Contact with sprayed crop or contaminated areas
•   Inhalation of contaminated air
•   Drinking contaminated water
•   Eating contaminated food
•   Tracking into the home via pets or humans
•   Contaminated clothing or footwear
Bioaccumulation is Dangerous
• Bioaccumulation results from the use of
  pesticides which are lipophilic and which
  persist in the environment for a long time
• Many pesticides in common use are both
  lipophilic and persistent - including many
  organochlorines and organophosphates
• Spray drift contaminates surrounding areas
  and non-target species, including man
       Persistent Pesticides
• Bio accumulate
• Present risk of long-term exposure
• Enter the food chain
• Concentrate in higher animals and man
• Are difficult to remove from the
  environment and from the human body.
• Can induce long-term health effects
    Each Type of Pesticide Acts on
    Different Functions in the Body
  Arsenicals                 Organochlorines
• Blood vessel damage      • Nervous system toxins
• Enzyme inhibitors        • Block GABA channels
                           • Hormone disruptors
•   Nervous system toxins
•   Peripheral neuropathy
•   Enzyme disruptors      • Nervous system toxins
•   Damage DNA/RNA         • Sensitisation
•   Limit oxygen transport
      Other Pesticide Actions
  Pyrethroids Type I          Chlorphenoxy
• Nervous system toxins        Compounds
                          •   Nervous system toxins
  Pyrethroids Type II     •   Peripheral neuropathy
• Cause paresthesias      •   Metabolic poisons
• Block sodium channel    •   Skin and mucous
• Inhibit GABA                membrane irritants
       More Pesticide Actions
    Carbamates                Dipyridyls -paraquat
• Nervous system toxins      • Corrosive
• Similar in action to       • Membrane poisons
  organophosphates but
  the action is reversible   • No antidote

   Triazines                   Phthalimides
• Mucous membranes           • Nervous system toxins
• Endocrine system           • Glucose metabolism
      Actions of Co-Formulants
•   Can increase toxicity of active ingredients
•   Can be extremely toxic in their own right
•   Can be volatile with toxic vapours
•   Can cause cancer e.g. benzene & leukaemia
•   Can have insecticidal properties
•   Can protect the active ingredient
•   Can prolong activity of the formulation
•   Can trigger chemical sensitivity reactions
      Multiple Exposures Are
• Each poison targets different enzymes
• Each poison adds to cumulative damage
• Repeated exposures can cause permanent changes
  and long-term effects
• When suffering from the effects of a pesticide
  further exposures to that or any other should be
  avoided until recovery is complete
• Mixtures of pesticides are frequently used
• Pesticide/medicine combinations can be deadly
   Symptoms can be Non-Specific
Such as
• Flu-like symptoms including dizziness, malaise,
  coughs, sore throat, headaches
• Rashes or reddened skin, sweating
• Gastrointestinal symptoms, nausea, vomiting
• Blurred vision, seizures or strokes
• Heart rate abnormalities
• Effects of odours - which are not necessarily the
  toxicological effects of the active ingredient alone
    Pesticide Symptoms can Mimic
       Those of Other Illnesses
•   Asthma              •   Meningitis
•   Influenza           •   Bronchitis
•   Heart Attack        •   Epilepsy
•   Brain haemorrhage   •   Alcoholism
•   Diabetes            •   Parkinson’s Disease
•   Gastroenteritis     •   Multiple Sclerosis
•   Pneumonia           •   Alzheimer’s Disease
•   Viral infection     •   Heat Stroke
    Contraindicated Treatments
•   Theophylline / Aminophylline for asthma
•   Certain antibiotics
•   Antidepressants
•   Anaesthetics
•   Painkillers such as morphine
•   A host of others too numerous to mention
    which act on the same biological pathways
Poisoning Recognised Officially
• Numerous PIAP reports in UK alone have
  confirmed poisoning from single episodes
  of exposure to spray drift

• Thousands of poisoning cases are
  recognised annually around the world

• The adverse effects of drift are well known
 Unrecognised Poisoning Cases
• In the UK there is a reluctance to recognise
  any pesticide poisoning cases
• That is made worse by the unknown causes
  of many serious illnesses such as cancer,
  ME, asthma or Parkinson’s Disease
• Even direct poisoning cases are hidden as
  seen in the Sheep Dip and OP litigation
    Inadequate Medical Care
The graph below indicates the lack of available
medical treatment in the UK (deaths – treatment)
                Source USA (2002) –

10 00

 80 0

 60 0

  40 0

  20 0

        0                                                       pi
                                                            Ho s tal izatio ns
            Co s ta                                      Fa ta li tie s
             Ri ca             Swe den
                      La nka             U.K.
  A Village in the UK where
Pesticides are used Intensively
  Known Illnesses in Past or
Current Residents in that Area
    Confirmed Illnesses to Date in
    the Village of Thorley include
•   Cancers                  • 39 of which 27 died
•   M.E.                     • 9 cases (6 left village)
•   Neurological problems    • 9 cases 2 confirmed as
•         (4 died)             pesticide poisoning
•   Serious heart problems   • 13 of which 10 died
•   Asthma                   • Numerous cases
•   Joint/bone problems      • Numerous cases often
                               in ex-farm workers
  Evidence of Harmful Effects
• Studies show adverse effects in children
• Effects in pesticide applicators
• Studies of pesticide use and effects in
  schools and hospitals
• Tracking of pesticides into homes
• Persistence of pesticides after application
• Evidence in law of recognised long-term
  effects from repeated low-dose exposures
             Medical Records
•   The correct tests are often not offered
•   Availability of testing is often denied
•   Test results are often hidden or falsified
•   Supporting medical opinion is ignored
•   Medical records are withheld
•   Lack of that information is then used to
    claim there is no risk from pesticides
     Risks to Vulnerable People
•   Foetal exposures – developmental changes
•   Children - susceptible to low exposures
•   Those already poisoned, or on medication
•   Patients with cancer, MS, Parkinson’s etc.
•   Elderly patients
•   Anyone with infection, M.E. or asthma
•   Those with Multiple Chemical Sensitivity
    Children are at Greatest Risk
•   Immune systems are still forming
•   Greater exposure relative to weight
•   Hand to mouth contact more frequent
•   Often crawling or playing in treated areas
•   Unaware of any risk
•   Unaware of appropriate precautions
•   Vulnerable and need greater protection
     Reasons for Notification
• To allow the vulnerable to be protected
• To allow those who can to move away
• To ensure that children are indoors
• To reduce post-application exposures by
  physical contact with sprayed areas
• To ensure no contamination of washing
• To allow time to seal homes if necessary
     Reasons for Right to Direct
    Pesticide Information Access
•   Some treatments are ineffective after 24 hrs
•   Third party involvement increases costs
•   Less likelihood of error
•   Information required for correct diagnosis
•   Diagnosis required for safe treatment
•   Less Secrecy = Greater Trust
•   Greater trust improves rural relationships
Dangers of Using a Third Party
•   Delay in obtaining information
•   Additional costs
•   Increased likelihood of error
•   Need to persuade Third Party to act
•   Uncertain knowledge of subject
•   Regular updates required
•   Information easily overtaken by events
•   Additional Data Protection problems
Is the DEFRA Science Flawed?
•   Pesticides are more persistent than claimed
•   Exposures are more prolonged than claimed
•   Exposures are rarely to a single chemical
•   Accurate exposure measurement impossible
•   Induced effects are easily missed
•   Records are dangerously inaccurate
•   Powerful vested interests are involved
          Current Legislation
•   Demands protection of human health
•   Requires pre-marketing pesticide approval
•   Requires control of pesticide use
•   Protects non-target organisms – people?
•   Demands that least toxic methods are used
•   Requires pesticide records to be kept
•   But regulations are rarely enforced
•   Without enforcement there are no laws
• Buffer Zones are essential to protect health
• Pesticide testing is inadequate
• Advance notification for the vulnerable and
  direct access to detailed information about
  the pesticides used is essential
• DEFRA has failed to protect the public or
  the environment from dangerous toxins
• The National Health Service has failed to
  protect individuals poisoned by pesticides
          The Way Forward
• The Government must remove from positions of
  influence all those who have provided false
• Testing and treatment centres should be
  established in all areas as part of a health
  improvement programme
• All pesticides must be properly tested by
  independent laboratories before approval
• An Independent Inquiry into the entire issue
• Prosecute Officials who have acted unlawfully
   Towards Public Protection
• Every means available should be enacted to
  protect children and vulnerable groups
• All pesticide laws, regulations, and
  recommendations should be legally binding
  on those who use pesticides
• Enforcement of those regulations is the key
  to a more healthy population and a cleaner
  environment for us all
       Questions for DEFRA
• Where is your independent science?
• Why do you ignore contrary evidence?
• Do you understand the human metabolism?
• Will you stop providing false or unreliable
  information to Ministers and the public?
• Will you ever put the safety of public health
  before the interests of industry?

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