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posted by martyb on Friday June 22 2018, @11:05PM   Printer-friendly
from the something-that-kills-something-might-be-bad-for-you dept.

In the first trial of its kind, a Californian dying of cancer is suing US agrochemical giant Monsanto, claiming its popular herbicide Roundup caused his disease—a case that could have sweeping ramifications.

The stakes are high for Monsanto, which could face massive losses should it have to pay out damages over the product, whose main ingredient is glyphosate, a substance which some say is dangerously carcinogenic.

Dewayne Johnson, a 46-year-old father of two, says he is sick because of contact with Roundup, which he used for two years from 2012 as a groundskeeper for the Benicia school district near San Francisco, his lawyer Timothy Litzenburg told AFP.

Thousands of lawsuits targeting Monsanto are currently proceeding through the US court system, according to American media.

Litzenburg says he represents hundreds of people who also say they are victims of glyphosate.

Whether the substance causes cancer has been the source of endless debate among government regulators, health experts and lawyers.

"A major part of that job was spraying Roundup or Ranger Pro (a similar Monsanto product)... He sprayed it 20 to 40 times per year, sometimes hundreds of gallons at a time on the school properties," Litzenburg said.

In 2014, Johnson was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a cancer that affects white blood cells. Two years later, and no longer able to work, he filed suit against Monsanto, which he accuses of hiding its product's dangers.

"His case has been expedited because he currently has only a few months to live," his lawyer said.

Wikipedia entry on glyphosate.

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  • (Score: 2) by VLM on Saturday June 23 2018, @12:17AM (1 child)

    by VLM (445) on Saturday June 23 2018, @12:17AM (#697047)

    I was motivated to look up the MSDS, there are a lot of glyphosate products most running about 40% of one or another glyphosate salt and 60% god knows what.

    glyphosate looks pretty harmless compared to Isopropylamine. So the solution (ugh the pun) is the potassium salt instead of Isopropylamine, assuming its the real culprit, which its statistically unlikely to be, but maybe...

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  • (Score: 2) by canopic jug on Sunday June 24 2018, @03:35AM

    by canopic jug (3949) Subscriber Badge on Sunday June 24 2018, @03:35AM (#697447) Journal

    I was motivated to look up the MSDS, there are a lot of glyphosate products most running about 40% of one or another glyphosate salt and 60% god knows what.

    Setting aside the question of glyphosate itself, it is these new products with their "God knows what" ingredients which are not only exceedingly toxic but persistent. That stuff is still marketed as "roundup" which people believe is glyphosate, but it includes something else. It's now common to see trees die across the street from where that stuff is sprayed because the persistent agents make their way to the trees' roots on its way to the water table.

    Money is not free speech. Elections should not be auctions.