Share The Wealth by Chris Gupta
January 12, 2004

RoundUp Ready Grass (GE)

Chemical companies are seeking, in the U.S., non-regulated status for genetically engineered grass. Approval of this, in my opinion, will ensure regular blanket-spraying of lawns with RoundUp (glyphosate), a chemical whose goal is to kill all plant life it comes in contact with.

Farmers use it between crops to kill off all other plant growth on their fields. You may have heard of RoundUp Ready (Genetically engineered) soybeans and the like, "Frankenstein" plants who have immunity to RoundUp, thereby allowing the spraying of this chemical directly onto the fields (and soybean plants) during the growing season.

With the GE grass, we have the same situation - a synthetic chemical previously used to obliterate all plant life, can be used without damage to the GE grass. No doubt the price of the grass seed will be exorbitant, and homeowners will be anxious to keep it in tiptop shape with regular dosings of RoundUp.

Denmark has recently banned RoundUp due to contamination of ground water - 5 times acceptable levels - article below Ge grass article.

Click on this link to find out more about common synthetic lawn chemicals...look under glyphosate for RoundUp effects such as spontaneous abortion:

Patty Webber, R.N.,
co-chair, London Coalition Against Pesticides

"Environmentalists have been looked on as the dreamers of the world, when in fact they are the realists."
.....Edward O. Wilson, world-renowned entomologist.

Monsanto Co. and The Scotts Co.; Availability of petition for determination of nonregulated status for genetically engineered glyphosate-tolerant creeping bentgrass;

Request for information and comment
January 5, 2004
Federal Register: (Volume 69, Number 2) [Page 315-317] [DOCID:fr05ja04-28]

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice.


We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has received a petition from Monsanto Company and The Scotts Company seeking a determination of nonregulated status for creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.) designated as event ASR368, which has been genetically engineered for tolerance to the herbicide glyphosate. The petition has been submitted in accordance with our regulations concerning the introduction of certain genetically engineered organisms and products. In accordance with those regulations, we are soliciting public comments on whether this creeping bentgrass presents a plant pest risk. We are also requesting information and public comment on certain issues pertaining to the potential environmental effects of the subject bentgrass. DATES: We will consider all comments we receive on or before March 5, 2004.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by postal mail/commercial delivery or by e-mail. If you use postal mail/commercial delivery, please send four copies of your comments (an original and three copies) to Docket No. 03-101-1, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3C71, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238. Please state that your comments refer to Docket No. 03-101-1. If you use e-mail, address your comment to Your comment must be contained in the body of your message; do not send attached files. Please include your name and address in your message and Docket No. 03-101-1 on the subject line. You may read a copy of the petition for a determination of nonregulated status submitted by Monsanto Company and The Scotts Company and any comments we receive on this notice of availability in our reading room. The reading room is located in room 1141, USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure that someone is available to help you, please call (202) 690-2817 before coming.

APHIS documents published in the Federal Register, and related information, including the names of organizations and individuals who have commented on APHIS dockets, are available on the Internet here

Dr. Bruce MacBryde, BRS, APHIS, Suite 5B05, 4700 River Road Unit 147, Riverdale, MD 20737-1236; (301) 734- 5787.

To obtain a copy of the petition, contact Ms. Kay Peterson at (301) 734-4885; e-mail: The petition is:

also available on the Internet here
Glyphosate ban as water contaminated (16/9/2003)

Glyphosate, Monsanto's "Roundup" herbicide - for which its GM crops are designed to be resistant - has been banned in Denmark because it is contaminating water supplies. ---

16 September 2003
Dear Friends and colleagues,

Denmark has imposed a ban on the spraying of glyphosates as of 15 September 2003 following the release of data which found that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto's Roundup herbicide (RR) has been contaminating the drinking water resources of the country. The chemical has, against all expectations sieving down through the soil and polluting the ground water at a rate of five times more than the allowed level for drinking water, according to tests done by the Denmark and Greenland Geological Research Institution (DGGRI) as reported below.

"When we spray glyphosate on the fields by the rules it has been shown that it is washed down into the upper ground water with a concentration of 0.54 micrograms per litre. This is very surprising, because we had previously believed that bacteria in the soil broke down the glyphosate before it reached the ground water," says DGGRI. We hope you will find the information provided useful.

With best wishes,

Lim Li Lin and Chee Yoke Heong

Third World Network
121-S Jalan Utama
10450 Penang, Malaysia
REF: Doc.TWN/Biosafety/2003/F

Item 1

Danish glyphosate restrictions draw protests

Environment Daily no. 1457, Jun 5, 2003

Danish environment minister Hans Christian Schmidt has announced unprecedented restrictions on glyphosate, the country's and Europe's most widely used herbicide. The action follows publication of data showing the chemical's presence in groundwater, from which Denmark obtains most of its drinking water. Although concentrations in drinking water did not exceed permissible limits, it was "worrying" that unacceptable quantities of glyphosate and its breakdown product AMPA might build up via drainage in the uppermost levels of groundwater, Mr Schmidt said. "Danes should be able to put the coffee on in the morning without worrying about pesticides", he added. From 15 September, autumn spraying of glyphosates will be banned on sites "where leaching is extensive because of heavy rain".

There are a number of exceptions to the new restrictions, which are subject to revision after an interim consultation period. In a joint response, Cheminova, Syngenta and Monsanto, which manufacture or sell glyphosate in Denmark, condemned the government's move as "unacceptable" for the producers or Danish farmers. Glyphosate could only be identified as a threat by ignoring "scientific findings and knowledge", they said. According to the firms, the restrictions appeared to be based on finding of glyphosate at one metre's depth in the soil. This "can hardly - and only with the most narrow political intentions - be regarded as groundwater, and certainly not as drinking water", they complained.

The Danish row will reignite a gathering EU debate on the sustainable pesticides use being coordinated by the European Commission, which is due to issue firm proposals for a strategy next year (ED 04/07/02)

European NGOs and some MEPs are campaigning for a halving in pesticide usage over ten years (ED 28/03/03)

Danish EPA, tel: +45 32 66 01 00, and press release
Cheminova, Syngenta and Monsanto statement
Item 2

Poisonous Spray on a Course Towards Drinking Water
Politken, Denmark, by Anders Legarth Schmidt
May 10, 2003

Denmark's most popular herbicide Roundup is polluting the underground water far more than previously thought. Agriculture uses yearly 800 tons of active glyphosate in herbicide. The Environment Minister is looking at taking steps to address this.

The Danish drinking water resources are under attack from an unexpected quarter. The chemical glyphosate that is in the popular herbicides Roundup and Touchdown is against all expectations sieving down through the soil and polluting the ground water at a rate of five times more than the allowed level for drinking water.

This has been shown from tests done by the Denmark and Greenland Geological Research Institution (DGGRI) in an as yet unpublished article.

Believed Bacteria broke down glyphosate "When we spray glyphosate on the fields by the rules it has been shown that it is washed down into the upper ground water with a concentration of 0.54 micrograms per litre. This is very surprising, because we had previously believed that bacteria in the soil broke down the glyphosate before it reached the ground water."

It is the Environment Ministry that has given permission to use glyphosate - based on the producers [Monsanto's] own research.

Used against Twitch and Thistles

Farmers spray glyphosate on their fields after the harvest to keep the soil free of twitch and thistles. It had been earlier found in wells in Roskilde and Storstroms regions as well as the Copenhagen district council area. Critics say glyphosate causes cancer, while its defenders call it a wonder herbicide.

Professor Mogens Henze the head of the Institute for Environment and Resources at Denmark's Technical University, says that the consequence of the new knowledge is that water works in five to ten years will need to clean the water before Danes can drink it.

"The results show that glyphosate is polluting our drinking water. And unfortunately we have only seen the tip of the iceberg, because glypho sate and many other spray chemicals are on their way through the soil at this point in time. Politicians need to look at agriculture in relation to clean drinking water and decide what it is they are going to do." says Mogens Henze, who isn't blaming the farmers who use something that the authorities have allowed.

Use Doubled

Statistics from the Environment Ministry show that the use of glyphosate has doubled in the last five years. In 2001 800 tons was used and that made up a quarter of farmers total use of pesticides. This shows that glyphosate is the most used herbicide by farmers. As a result of the new research from DGGRI the Environment Minister Hans Christian Schmidt is currently thinking about doing something about the use of glyphosate on Danish fields. "It is simply not acceptable that this stuff is turning up in our groundwater in such a concentration so high over the acceptable level. If this is the case then we must react quickly" says the Environment Minister, who is awaiting a report from the Environment Ministry.


posted by Chris Gupta on Monday January 12 2004
updated on Saturday September 24 2005

URL of this article:



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