WARWICK, Mass. (WWLP) – The western Franklin County town of Warwick has banned its residents from using the popular weedkiller, RoundUp.
The ban went into effect Monday night. The town passed a warrant banning anyone form using glyphosate, a chemical pesticide, to kill weeds on land in town. It’s most commonly seen in RoundUp, made by Monsanto.
Thirty Warwick residents voted in favor of banning the product, while 19 voted against it, including the town’s administrative coordinator. The town’s selectboard initiated the ban.
“Warwick is a farm community, and we just banned ubiquitous herbicides in agriculture, its not the way we do agriculture here,” Warwick Administrative Coordinator David Young said.
According to Monsanto’s website, RoundUp helps farmers grow crops more sustainably. Farmers can reduce soil erosion and carbon emissions, which is great for the environment. Farmers have been using the product for more than 40 years.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, glyphosate, the pesticide used in RoundUp, has low toxicity for humans and is no more than slightly toxic to birds, and non-toxic to fish and honeybees. This summer, however, the state of California added glyphosate to its list of potentially cancerous chemicals.
According to the EPA, glyphosate is currently undergoing registration review, a program that re-evaluates all pesticides every 15 years.
Both of the full-time farms in town are organic so they have no interest in using the pesticide themselves or having them applied anywhere near their certified fields.
Warwick also banned people form feeding Canadian Geese at a pond in town.