Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Lawsuits Mount Against Monsanto's 'Cancer-Causing' Weedkiller

Food
Lawsuits Mount Against Monsanto's 'Cancer-Causing' Weedkiller

Looks like the cancer lawsuits against Monsanto are gaining country-wide momentum. Reuters reports that personal injury law firms around the U.S. are gathering numerous plaintiffs to build "mass tort actions" alleging that exposure to the company's popular weedkiller, Roundup, causes cancer.

Law firms—from California to New York City and nearly everywhere in between—are building cases against Monsanto. Numerous plaintiffs allege that exposure to the company's flagship herbicide, Roundup, causes cancer.
Photo credit: Flickr

A new lawsuit was filed in Delaware Superior Court on Wednesday by three law firms representing three plaintiffs. According to Reuters, plaintiff Joselin Barrera, 24, a child of migrant farm workers, claims her non-Hodgkin lymphoma stemmed from exposure to glyphosate, the key ingredient in Monsanto's used weedkiller, Roundup. The other name on the suit, former migrant farm worker and landscaper Elias de la Garza, was also diagnosed with the same disease and has similar claims about the toxicity of the herbicide.

The new lawsuit is similar to Enrique Rubio v. Monsanto Company and Fitzgerald v. Monsanto Company, which were filed on the same day, Sept. 22, in Los Angeles and New York respectively. In these suits, former field worker Enrique Rubio (who has bone cancer) and horticultural assistant Judi Fitzgerald (who has leukemia) both claim that exposure to Roundup caused their diseases, and that Monsanto “falsified data” and “led a prolonged campaign of misinformation” to convince the public, farm workers and government agencies about the safety of the product.

The suits come after the World Health Organization's infamous report in March declaring that glyphosate was "probably carcinogenic to humans." Following that, in September, California’s Environmental Protection Agency issued plans to list glyphosate as known to cause cancer.

While EcoWatch was informed by Monsanto's spokeswoman Charla Lord that Fitzgerald's suit was "voluntarily dismissed without prejudice" in New York, yesterday we learned that the Fitzgerald case was added to the recently filed Delaware suit.

When EcoWatch contacted Weitz & Luxenberg, the law firm representing Fitzgerald, Robin Greenwald, the head of the firm’s environmental law unit, told us: “For clarification, we added Ms. Fitzgerald to a complaint we filed in Delaware. So we dismissed the suit in New York and refiled in Delaware state court, closer to her home and where Monsanto is incorporated.”

Monsanto has demanded a retraction of the WHO report and will “vigorously” defend itself against the lawsuits.

“Decades of experience within agriculture and regulatory reviews using the most extensive worldwide human health databases ever compiled on an agricultural product contradict the claims in the suit which will be vigorously defended,” Lord said last month.

It appears, however, more and more plaintiffs are lining up to make cases against the embattled agribusiness giant, which is facing slumping earnings and recently announced it will eliminate 12 percent of its workforce.

"We can prove that Monsanto knew about the dangers of glyphosate," Michael McDivitt, whose Colorado law firm is arranging cases for 50 individuals, told Reuters. "There are a lot of studies showing glyphosate causes these cancers."

His firm is advertising free case evaluations and hosted town hall gatherings in August in Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska to seek clients.

Baltimore-based firm Saiontz & Kirk, Washington, DC-based firm Schmidt & Clark as well as firms in Texas, Colorado and California are also advertising similar Roundup lawsuit evaluations to find plaintiffs, Reuters observed.

According to Reuters, the attorneys are citing strong evidence that links glyphosate to non-Hodgkin lymphoma and said they will likely collaborate as mass tort actions against Monsanto.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Deceptive Tactics Used by Industry-Funded Group to Gain Support for Bill That Would Ban GMO Labeling

Europe GMO Debate Not Over: EU Votes to Allow GMO Imports Despite Opposition

2.6 Billion Pounds of Monsanto’s Glyphosate Sprayed on U.S. Farmland in Past Two Decades

Monsanto Fights Back Against Cancer Lawsuits as Company Eliminates 12% of Workforce

A sea turtle rescued from Israel's devastating oil spill. MENAHEM KAHANA / AFP via Getty Images

Rescue workers in Israel are using a surprising cure to save the sea turtles harmed by a devastating oil spill: mayonnaise!

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A "digital twin of Earth." European Space Agency

As the weather grows more severe, and its damages more expensive and fatal, current weather predictions fall short in providing reliable information on Earth's rapidly changing systems.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Melting ice in places such as Greenland could stop a critical ocean current. Paul Souders / Getty Images

The climate crisis could push an important ocean current past a critical tipping point sooner than expected, new research suggests.

Read More Show Less
California Gov. Gavin Newsom tours the Chevron oil field west of Bakersfield, where a spill of more than 900,000 gallons flowed into a dry creek bed, on July 24, 2019. Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

By Brett Wilkins

Accusing California regulators of "reckless disregard" for public "health and safety," the environmental advocacy group Center for Biological Diversity on Wednesday sued the administration of Gov. Gavin Newsom for approving thousands of oil and gas drilling and fracking projects without the required environmental review.

Read More Show Less
Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Kenyan professor Wangari Maathai poses during the COP15 UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark on December 15, 2009. Olivier Morin / AFP / Getty Images

By Kate Whiting

From Greta Thunberg to Sir David Attenborough, the headline-grabbing climate change activists and environmentalists of today are predominantly white. But like many areas of society, those whose voices are heard most often are not necessarily representative of the whole.

Read More Show Less