Pesticides kill 200,000 annually – UN report

A recent United Nations study estimates that 200,000 people, mostly farmers in the developing world, die every year due to the excessive use of pesticides. These farmers, like many homeowners, have been charmed by the handful of chemical companies, some of which also ironically produce life saving medicines, that chemical pesticides are necessary to growing crops.

“Excessive use of pesticides is very dangerous to human health, to the environment,” the authors, Hilal Elver and Baskut Tuncak, both special investigators for the U.N. on food and toxins wrote, “and it is misleading to claim they are vital to ensuring food security.”

These are serious findings and they should be taken seriously by our government agencies and by each one of us.

The use of organic gardening and farming fertilizers and pesticides was for a long time looked down upon by those influenced by the chemical companies’ persuasive advertising for their chemical pesticides, developed from their weapons used in war.

Many of us thought nothing of stopping by our garden center or hardware store and picking up a bag of chemical fertilizer or pesticides and spreading the stuff across our lawns and gardens, often not checking to see how much we should be using. After all, the more one used the better our flowers and vegetables might be – or so we believed.

We never thought that these chemicals could be causing health problems for our families, pets and for the birds that we feed and love to see using our feeders.

Now we know.

We can do something about this. We can begin using the less harmful organic fertilizers and pesticides. We can educate others that our towns need ordinances against using harmful chemical pesticides and fertilizers. We can also ask our state representatives and senators to consider passing state wide legislation to protect everyone’s health.

Life is too precious to be sacrificed on the altar of corporate greed.

Bill Baker

About Bill Baker

Bill's interest in a clean place to live is rooted in growing up in the country – a cornfield across the road and fields, sandstone cliffs and hundreds of acres of woods where he spent many hours.