If you've been following the plight of the monarch butterfly you know that glyphosate - commonly known as Round Up - is responsible for contributing to the dramatic decline in monarch butterflies by eliminating milkweed, the one plant the monarchs depend on to reproduce. However, other types of weeds have actually developed resistance to glyphosate and no longer respond to the application of this pesticide. As a result, DOW chemical has developed a new herbicide, Enlist Duo, that combines glyphosate with an additional herbicide called 2,4D to be used on corn and soybeans that have been genetically engineered to resist both glyphosate and 2,4-D. This next-generation herbicide takes us in the wrong direction and sets us on the path towards a snowballing effect of more and more powerful pesticides which threaten human health and imperil the iconic monarch butterfly.
NRDC is challenging the approval of Enlist Duo in court, but we are also calling on DOW Chemical to shelve the pesticides itself. So today we placed an ad in the New York Times to increase the pressure on Dow Chemical to "end this chemical arms race" against nature by pulling its toxic herbicide, Enlist Duo.
The US Department of Agriculture predicts Enlist Duo could result in as much as a six-fold increase in the use of 2,4-D, which has been linked to health impacts in humans, including decreased fertility, birth defects and thyroid problems. Additionally, both glyphosate and 2,4 D were recently classified as a "probable" and "possible" carcinogens by the World Health Organization, respectively.
The full-page New York Times ad contains a link to an online petition for readers to tell Andrew Liveris, the President, Chairman, and CEO of Dow Chemical, to cancel plans for this new toxic herbicide before it wreaks more destruction on monarchs by destroying milkweed, a native plant monarchs need to survive.
More than 145,000 NRDC members and online activists have already signed the petition at NRDC.org/SaveMonarchs.
Have you signed the petition yet? Please tell Dow's CEO to shelve the company's plan for selling this potent chemical cocktail by clicking here.