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Webinar: Rethinking Urban Weed Management: From Glyphosate to Sustainable Solutions

10. April @ 10:00 - 12:00

Rethinking Urban Weed Management: From Glyphosate to Sustainable Solutions

Organized by: PAN Europe Date: 10 April 2024, 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM CET

Location: Webinar – the Zoom platform

Language: English

Event goals:

● Raise awareness about the potential health & environmental risks of glyphosate use and the widespread exposure of the general public.

● Share successful experiences of cities that have transitioned away from the use of glyphosate in public spaces.

● Encourage a dialogue on alternative methods for managing public urban areas.

Chairperson: Angeliki Lysimachou Agenda:

1. Welcome and Introduction: PAN Europe

2. Opening Remarks:

● Speaker: MEP Jutta Paulus, MEP Biljana Borzan, MEP Christophe Clergeau

3. Keynote Speaker:

● Pesticide Free Towns: The City of Törökbalint, the new member of the European Network of Pesticide Free Towns – Elek Sándor, the Mayor of Törökbalint

4. Panel Discussion:

● Panelists:

○ Potential health risks associated with glyphosate exposure – Norbert Fraeyman, toxicologist, University of Gent ○ Representative from a relevant environmental organization, providing data and scientific evidence on the exposure to glyphosate – Alisa Hufsky, Bündnis für eine enkeltaugliche Landwirtschaft e.V.

○ How the City of Törökbalint succeeded to eliminate synthetic pesticides from public places – Martón Bruder, Törökbalint ○ Cities’s contribution to protection of citizens’ health and the environment Heinz-Joachim Höfer, Committee of Regions 5. Q&A Session (10 minutes):

● Questions from the audience to the panelists.

6. Closing Remarks and Next Steps:

● Speaker: MEP Jutta Paulus, MEP Biljana Borzan, MEP Christophe Clergeau

● Speaker: Martin Dermine, PAN Europe

Additional information:

With the Implementing Regulation to renew glyphosate now in force, the process for the renewal of the national authorisations of glyphosate-based herbicides has started at Member State level. This moment offers a real opportunity to reflect on the use of glyphosate-based herbicides and pesticides in general in public spaces, where residents are exposed, including the most vulnerable groups of our population, such as children and pregnant women. Ahead of the re-authorisation of glyphosate-based products at national level, PAN Europe wants to seize the opportunity to bring together experts and policymakers to discuss the need to limit the use of glyphosate and pesticides in general, and to show that alternative safer management methods of public spaces exist, are efficient and have many benefits.

Under Article 12 of the Directive 128/2009 (EC), Member States have to ensure that the use of pesticides is minimised or prohibited in certain specific areas. Some Member States have implemented this, but many have not, leaving a lot of room for improvement. This is crucial because scientific evidence underscores the harmful effects of pesticides on human health. A report by the French institute Inserm highlights the link between pesticide exposure and several health concerns, including certain cancers, respiratory illnesses, and neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s. One of the pesticides studied was glyphosate.

In response to these ongoing challenges, PAN Europe is organizing this event, to protect the health of citizens and declining biodiversity and promote the adoption of sustainable and safe alternatives to glyphosate.

Pesticide Action Network Europe (PAN Europe) is a non-profit organisation working on reducing the use of harmful pesticides. We are science-based, composed of experts in different areas related to pesticides, with 50 members throughout Europe. To achieve our goal, we are conducting advocacy, policy analysis, networking and campaigning activities. You can read more about the organisation here and here.


10. April
10:00 - 12:00