A moratorium placed by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on the use of Roundup, a controversial herbicide containing glyphosate, a chemical believed to cause cancer, has been extended for another month.
“The moratorium has been extended 30 days as Public Works needs more time to study the issue and access appropriate alternatives,” said Tony Bell, who serves as LA County Supervisor Kathryn Barger’s communication director.
In March, Barger successfully introduced the original 30-day ban on the popular weed killer after the Pasadena Weekly reported that county workers were spraying the herbicide near a heliport in Northeast Pasadena.
In 2015, the World Health Organization found that glyphosate “probably causes cancer.”
The US Environmental Protection Agency does not consider the chemical a carcinogen.
At a special meeting of the Pasadena City Council on March 27, Los Angeles County Public Works Director Mark Pestrella confirmed that county officials sprayed the weed killer in Hahamongna Watershed Park as part of a sediment removal project.
The city of Pasadena stopped using Roundup in 2018, according to City Manager Steve Mermell.
Communities in 13 states, including California, have placed restrictions or bans on Roundup. Some of the cities that have banned Roundup include Burbank, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Irvine and Thousand Oaks.
In 2017, the city of Los Angeles’ Recreation and Parks Department stopped spraying the weed killer within 100 feet of children’s play areas, recreation centers and dog parks.
According to the Department of Agriculture, in 2014 approximately 240 million pounds of glyphosate were sprayed in the US. As a result of widespread spraying, glyphosate has now been found to contaminate air, water and soil across vast expanses of the country.
A proliferation of ads for the product recently hit the airwaves in Southern California on the heels of two lawsuits that ended in juries ruling against Bayer, makers of Roundup, and awarding hundreds of millions dollars to the plaintiffs.
On Monday CNN reported that one analyst estimates that Bayer could wind up paying $2.2 billion in costs related to the remaining 13,400 lawsuits.