Great news! The Maryland House of Representatives just passed a bill to ban the brain-damaging pesticide chlorpyrifos. This means we’re one step closer to protecting human health and the environment from this toxic pesticide.
We’re so close to passing this bill. But Dow is working hard to stop it in the state Senate — which only has until April 8
So we need you to speak up NOW and make sure your state Senator votes YES with no changes!
Chlorpyrifos was banned for home use in 2001, due to its clear impact on children’s developing brains. It’s in the class of chemicals developed as a nerve poison by Nazi Germany, and it has been linked to Parkinson’s disease and lung cancer.
However, this toxic chemical is still used in Maryland’s agriculture. The U.S. Geological Survey estimates that Maryland uses as much as 82,000 pounds of chlorpyrifos on crops every year.
And its continued use is having devastating effects. Chlorpyrifos gets in our food, air and water, putting kids, rural communities and farmworkers at risk.
We need legislators to take action and protect our communities from this dangerous chemical. We are halfway to passing this critical bill in Maryland. But, Maryland’s state Senate will only follow the House if they hear from concerned constituents like you. Can we count on your support?
Chlorpyrifos is so hazardous that even the smallest amounts can lower kids’ IQs, cause arm tremors in children, and structurally change the parts of the brain that control language and memory.
It’s also poisoning important pollinators and critically threatened or endangered species, like bees and Atlantic sturgeon. A recent study found chlorpyrifos in 90 percent of Chesapeake Bay water samples. What’s more, 40 percent of the samples had levels that exceeded thresholds indicating possible ecological effects.
In our food, kids are exposed to chlorpyrifos at levels 140 times what the EPA considers safe. Plus, workers that mix and apply this toxic pesticide are exposed at levels that are unsafe even when they wear protective gear.
The Maryland Attorney General’s office is already challenging the EPA’s unwillingness to protect us from this pesticide. Now the Maryland legislature is so close to stepping up and protecting our communities where the federal government has failed. Dow is still doubling down on its lobbying in Maryland to stop this bill from passing. We can’t let the pesticide industry win this fight and poison our kids with this brain-damaging pesticide.
Standing with you,
Food and agriculture campaign associate,
Friends of the Earth