Restriction of Glyphosate

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    Context

    • The government has restricted use of Glyphosate and its derivatives, fearing health hazards and risk to human beings/animals.
      • The new rules permit only pest control operators to apply glyphosate. Pest control operators are licensed to use deadly chemicals for eliminating pests like rodents.

    What is Glyphosate?

    • Glyphosate is an herbicide. It is applied to the leaves of plants to kill both broadleaf plants and grasses. The sodium salt form of glyphosate is used to regulate plant growth and ripen specific crops.
    • Glyphosate and its formulations are widely registered and currently used in more than 160 countries, including the EU and the USA. Farmers across the globe have been using it for safe and effective weed control for over 40 years.
    • Its usage became popular in the country after the illegal cultivation of Ht BT cotton started. It is mainly used in tea plantations to control the growth of unwanted plants. It is also used in non-crop areas to prevent plant growth. 

    Risk Factors of using Glyphosate

    • Glyphosate is being banned because of its potential link to cancer in humans, as well as potentially causing the death of important insects, such as bees. Biologists have sounded the alarm over the serious decline in insect populations that affect species diversity.

    Source: BS