The Board of Directors conduct a review of the costs and benefits of eliminating the use of glyphosate on CP property and the potential for utilization of non-chemical based alternative weed control methods to maintain track safety while protecting environmental and aquatic resources.
Since their introduction in the 1970s, glyphosate-based products have become one of the most widely used herbicides globally.
The prevalence of glyphosate-based herbicides in the environment has led to increased scrutiny of potential impacts on both human health and ecosystem functioning.
In 2015 the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) hazard assessment determined that glyphosate is a probable human carcinogen.
In 2018 a jury in California awarded $289 million, subsequently reduced to $78.5 million, to a school groundskeeper who had regularly applied glyphosate based pesticides and developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL). Bayer’s Monsanto is appealing the decision.
California requires the product to be labelled as potentially causing cancer.
Health Canada recently added new precautions and labelling amendments related to the use of glyphosate near water due to potential impacts on aquatic organisms including specific warnings in situations where water could become contaminated by runoff following heavy rain or as a result of topography and soil composition.
Glyphosate has been shown to impact marine fish in particular, raising the risks of applying the herbicide near waterways that are either used by marine fish such as salmon or feed into water bodies containing marine fish.
Climate change is predicted to intensify both droughts and heavy rain events, conditions that could lead to increased pesticide runoff events.