Numerous authorities have also entered this battle between organic and conventional farming to help people distinguish between truth and propaganda: the first, in order of time, was the IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer), which concluded that glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic,” but shortly after, the EFSA(European Food Safety Authority) declared that glyphosate is “probably not carcinogenic”. Probably carcinogenic. Probably not carcinogenic. A conflict between environmentalists and agricultural industry lobbyists has thus turned into a clash of scientists, and in the middle are politicians and consumers.
The dilemma is faced everywhere, also in Europe, where the agricultural sector contributes 10 % of greenhouse gas emissions. One measure to decrease them has been identified with the proposal to limit the use of pesticides. The production of such chemicals is in fact energy intensive and requires fossil fuels, in addition to having devastating effects on fragile natural ecosystems. And what happens in Italy, a country that makes green agriculture its bulwark? There remains a ban on the use of glyphosate in areas frequented by the population such as parks, gardens, sports fields and recreational areas, children’s playgrounds, courtyards and green areas inside school complexes and health care facilities, but also the use in fields to accelerate ripening and harvesting. Yet, in Lombardy, according to a Legambiente report, “the presence of glyphosate and its metabolite, aminomethylphosphonic acid, is widely confirmed. In Lombardy, where the substance is present in 31.8 % of surface water monitoring points and the metabolite in 56.6 %. The herbicide is therefore widely used, and if it were monitored everywhere in the same way an increase in noncompliance cases would be very likely .