Chemist to take Roundup use to court

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

“Shall we just shoot ourselves in the foot again?”  What uninformed idiot wrote this article?  I have a doctorate in chemistry from Duke, taught chem for over a decade there, etc.  I am not uninformed, yet I am absolutely opposed to GMO crops in Costa Rica for sound and defendable reasons.  Your article cited the benefits of Roundup-ready genetic modifications.

Roundup has been conclusively shown to cause fish kills, increased erosion, organ damage in humans and domesticated animals, has been found in almost every well/spring tested, in mother’s milk, and in fetal blood.  Anyone advocating use of this poison should be on trial for accessory to murder, not writing unsubstantiated but influential articles.

I used to teach the class on reading and evaluating published scientific papers. The studies supporting GMO safety are designed for a specific result and are in large part, perfect examples of bad science.  Money drives research and there is a ton of money behind this cause.  However, there have been some good studies in well-respected journals that demonstrate the truth.  For example, what about the identified mechanism by which glychophosphate demonstrates endocrine disrupting effects even in parts per trillion quantities?  that means one gallon of roundup contaminates 1 cubic kilometer of water sufficiently to cause pre-cancerous changes likely leading to breast cancer.  The cancer link is actually the least proven damage.  Organ damage, birth defects etc. have much more substantial evidence backing them up.  furthermore, the half-life of roundup in soil is as much as 100 days.  This means that one application makes that soil toxic for a minimum of three  years.

We are starting to document cases of Roundup application.  In time, we will begin sampling neighboring land and water.  as we get test cases, we will be seeking relief in court.  My hope is to seize farms and properties that choose to use this toxic substance or at least get judgments in the millions of dollars per case.  If the chemical leaves your property, which it always does, then you are liable for the health problems of your neighbors, the death of your stream ecosystems, and the economic damage of reducing the value of your neighbors property.

Tort law will be our big stick!  If an organic farm loses a crop because of a neighbor’s chemical use, they need to be compensated for at least three years of potential harvests and a percentage value of the damaged land.  When people start losing their farms and homes, perhaps this global contamination will begin to abate!

Another strong reason to oppose genetic modified crops is genetic pollution which could destroy the genetic diversity of the planet.  GMO crops have been shown to pass on their genetics to other plants.  This is not debatable.  Even Monsanto admits this.  Costa Rica’s greatest treasure is its genetic diversity.  GMO crops threaten to destroy that!

Anyone who supports or uses GMO crops and/or roundup is either misinformed or essentially an accessory to murder and catastrophic environmental damage!  If you see someone with a sprayer in their hands, it is the same as a rifle pointed at your grandchildren, just slower.  It is already too late for our children. They are all contaminated.  But if we stop now, maybe we can save the grandchildren!

James D. Johansen
San Ramón
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