Glyphosate and 2,4-D Herbicide Use in Philadelphia Outdoor Spaces in 2022 by PPR
A provision in the HOPS bill requires Philadelphia Parks and Rec and all other government divisions that apply pesticides to public spaces to start keeping records of pesticide applications, which they were not doing previously to the passage of HOPS. TFP put in a right to know request for 2022's pesticide report, which was not made public. The request was granted and below is TFP's first analysis of the 10 page report.
The total amount of glyphosate herbicide used: Approximately 61,000 fluid ounces or 3800 lbs
- Contractors sprayed roughly 47,200 fluid ounces or 2925 lbs
- PPR staff sprayed roughly 14,000 fluid ounces or 875 lbs.
- The stated use of the large majority of glyphosate by PPR staff was for Ballfields, Building Perimeter Fence Lines, Trail and Forest Edges, Pavement Sidewalks, and Right of Way areas.
- The stated use of glyphosate by Contractors was for Forest Restoration and Meadows.
The total amount of 2,4-D herbicide used: 192,000 fluid ounces or 12,000 lbs.
- The stated use of 2,4-D herbicide in 4 large applications by PPR staff was for Pavement.
What are the Health Dangers Associated with Glyphosate in Our Food and Water?
There is no established safe level of glyphosate. Independent studies have linked glyphosate to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, early deaths from Parkinson’s, liver and kidney disease and neurotoxicity.
Industry tests on glyphosate reveal toxic effects, notably birth defects below the levels that regulators claimed showed no toxic effects.
There is strong evidence that glyphosate can cause damage directly to DNA.
Glyphosate has been shown to be a hormone disruptor. Hormone disruption in humans is thought to contribute to some cancers, birth defects, infertility, and developmental problems in fetuses, babies, and children.
Exposure to pesticides adversely affects gut microbiome. A healthy microbiome is needed to develop a baby’s immune system which is needed to prevent cancers.
According to a University of Washington study Roundup increases the risk of some cancers by more than 40%.
Roundup has been indicted as a carcinogen in several prominent court cases.
On 10/27/2023 a Philadelphia jury awarded $175 million after deciding an 83-year-old man
got cancer from Roundup weed killer
What does science say about the health risks of 2,4-D?
The International Agency for Research on Cancer declared 2,4-D a possible human carcinogen, based on evidence that it damages human cells and, in a number of studies caused cancer in laboratory animals. 2,4-D was one of two active ingredients in the “Agent Orange” herbicide formulation used during the Vietnam War. The U.S Veterans Administration has determined 17 presumptive diseases that may be associated with Agent Orange and are eligible for compensation and treatment. These include: Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, Multiple Myeloma, Parkinson’s Disease, Prostate Cancer, Thyroid Disease, Respiratory Cancers, and Peripheral Neuropathy to name some of the diseases on the list.
Additionally it is associated with asthma, poor semen quality, birth defects and breast cancer.
There is no established safe level of 2,4-D
Children are uniquely vulnerable to the health effects of pesticide exposure.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has found that children age 6-11 have higher levels of common pesticides in their bodies than adults . Many pesticides still widely used in the USA, at the level of tens to hundreds of millions of pounds annually, have been banned or are being phased out in the EU, China and Brazil.
One Art Community Center
City Parks Association
District 1199c Training Fund
Friends of Fernhill Park
Friends of Manatawna Farm
Friends of Vernon Park
Northwest Philly Climate Action Network
Our City, Our Schools Coalition
Temple Environmental Law Society
Toxic Free Philly Drexel University
Weaver's Way Co-op
The Black Institute
Clean Air Council
Clean Water Action
Delaware Riverkeeper Network