Below are some of our videos explaining the dangers of Paraquat and the link to Parkinson's disease. To learn more about the types of injuries that have been linked to the use of Paraquat, and the legal claims that have been filed, click Paraquat.
Court Orders Ban On Toxic Pesticide While EPA Approves MORE DEADLY Chemical Paraquat
Manila Chan: In a revival of an Obama era decision, the environmental protection agency is reversing the Trump era EPA use of chlorpyrifos, a toxic pesticide used in mass farming known to cause birth defects, lowered IQ, ADD, and other health effects. This ban is seen as a victory for those with the united farm workers union and environmentalists. Joining us to explain all that is attorney at Levin Papantonio and Rafferty, Sara Papantonio is here. Hi Sara. So can you explain to us more about these chlorpyrifos, I’m not even sure if I’m saying that correctly, and why did the Trump EPA turn around and make them legal again?
Sara Papantonio: Yeah. So here, here’s what we need to know about those chlorpyrifos. It’s a difficult word to pronounce. This is a highly potent, very toxic pesticide and we’ve known that it’s been toxic and potent for years now, since about 2007, when we first made the attempt to get it off the market. But here’s the issue. We’ve got an EPA that is so dysfunctional and so politically motivated that they just refuse to take action for political reasons. And so, so that’s the situation we’re dealing with. We’re finally now about 15 years later, making the decision that it’s finally time to take this thing off the market, but think of what we could have done. Think of all the children, all the families, all the people that would have been protected 10 years ago, that’s a generation of human beings who would not have ingested a potent deadly toxin. And it’s, I mean, it’s a good thing we’re finally got there, but it’s a long time coming.
Manila Chan: Have we seen Sara, the, any evidence of its harmful side effects? I mean, many which sound akin to the poisoning suffered by folks in Flint, Michigan, and their water crisis.
Sara Papantonio: Yeah, exactly. This science, the point is though this science comes directly from the EPA scientist. For years, they have known that this is a harmful toxin, a harmful pesticide, and they’ve actually been challenged on that issue for years. And, and what this really boils down to Manila is this wasn’t a decision made by the EPA. This was a decision made by the courts. The fact is that we have judges, you know, lawyers like me analyze the science and tell us consumers whether or not it’s safe because the EPA is so dysfunctional and they won’t make the decision for themselves. So, you know, we’re calling this an EPA victory, but we have to go back to the fact that this is actually a court ordered ban a, an appellate court told the EPA that you have to determine whether or not you’re going to make this safe or you have to take it off the market entirely.
Manila Chan: Yeah, it seems so dysfunctional in the past, I would say growing past 10, 15 years, but now that this pesticide, you know, is considered illegal, it has gone back and forth with being legal, illegal between the Trump era, the Obama era, and now the Biden era. Can anyone who was harmed by it, sue, if it were used during the Trump era, when it was still legal?
Sara Papantonio: You know, that’s something that we’re going to have to look into. But, but going back to this kind of political motivation and these political arguments, was it the Trump era or was it the Biden era. I’ve got to talk about the Biden administration and what, what the implications of this are. Here, Biden administration is claiming victory, right, because they’re taking this, this harmful pesticide off the market. Right. Even though there were court ordered to take it off the market. But on the other side, what, what consumers are not hearing, is that the Biden administration is actually expanding the use of an even more deadly pesticide called Paraquat. So on one hand, they’re claiming victory for taking one off the market. But on the other hand, there are completely expanding the use of an even more deadly pesticide, right? So we have to kind of look to see what they’re telling us versus what they’re doing. And right now the consumers are still highly at risk for this even more deadly pesticide Paraquat.
Manila Chan: Now, let me see if I get this right then. The Biden administration is taking this court order, which has nothing to do with Biden or his administration. This is completely separate. The courts are not a part of his administration. Taking that order from the court and claiming it as their own victory and that they’re cheerleading for the environment and the consumer health.
Sara Papantonio: Right. And at the very same time through other backdoors, they’re expanding the use of an even more deadly pesticide that’s called Paraquat. And it’s a completely different pesticide than the one we’re talking about today. So, so they can’t claim victory while also still implicating dangerous situations for, for consumers worldwide and in the United States.
Manila Chan: Yeah, it sounds very shameful that the EPA isn’t just doing what they’re supposed to be doing, which is in their name, environmental protection agency. Sara Papantonio, keeping them honest. Thank you so much for joining us.
Paraquat Labeled As Deadliest Weedkiller To Humans On The Planet
Mike Papantonio: Roundup is far from the only weed killer that’s caused a stir among medical professionals, another popular herbicide called Paraquat has been called the deadliest weed killer on the planet. Yet, it’s still being sold on the shelves. I have Alex Taylor who’s after these folks to try to hold them responsible for what they’ve done, Alex, I mean the headline, three drops of Paraquat will kill you. Okay. Inhalation will cause Parkinson’s disease. Talk about it.
Alex Taylor: Absolutely. And that’s, that’s no joke. If you were to take just a couple of drops, put them in your mouth and then spit them right back out.
Mike Papantonio: You’re dead.
Alex Taylor: That would be enough exposure to kill you.
Mike Papantonio: Yeah.
Alex Taylor: What they’ve learned over the last several years is that even if you wear full PPE while you’re using this, which is what you’re required to do by the EPA, you actually have to have a license to do it.
Mike Papantonio: Protection, full body protection.
Alex Taylor: Yeah. Think of all those videos you saw when COVID started happening, it looks just like that. If you wear all of that protection, but you use this on a daily basis in your work, you have more than double the risk of getting Parkinson’s.
Mike Papantonio: Okay. If you’re an applicator, you’re working on a golf course, all right, you’re using this stuff all the time. You’re seeing films where applicators aren’t wearing the full, the full outfit. So you’re assuming, well, it can’t be that bad. Well, you got to read the warning. Well, really? This is a guy, he’s been in this business forever, the warnings, you know, are this big and the threat is massive. The potential to cause Parkinson’s disease is over the top. What are the health issues? Just, is it just Parkinson’s disease? Which is, I don’t mean that, I mean, what an awful disease. But is it only Parkinson’s disease?
Alex Taylor: Oh no. The, if you have long-term exposure to this, it can cause potential lung damage, kidney damage, liver damage. I mean, this drug is toxic to every part of the body. Anywhere you get it, there is a serious risk. Obviously Parkinson’s is probably the scariest because of the long-term health benefits. I mean, you’re talking about, you know, long-term, you may end up in a wheelchair, you may end up with dementia. The long-term health risks are, you know, just terrible of the long-term exposure.
Mike Papantonio: Okay. Easy question here. I know the answer because I’ve dealt with corporations like this for so long. How long did these folks that make Paraquat know about the dangers and didn’t tell anybody?
Alex Taylor: At least going back to the 1990s and possibly even further back than that. They’ve always known about the toxicity, but as early as 1990, they were aware that they could change the formulation to make this chemical safer, make it less toxic. There was a whistleblower that released a lot of documents about this that basically shows that they knew about it. There were options to make it safer and they didn’t because they were afraid it was gonna affect their bottom line.
Mike Papantonio: Okay. So there’s no, there’s not even an age issue. A lot of times Parkinson’s develops later in life. We’re seeing people that are 40 years old that are developing Parkinson’s disease. The only reason they’re doing that, there’s nothing hereditary. There’s no other exposure. The only thing causing the Parkinson’s disease, which will kill them a slow ugly death.
Alex Taylor: Absolutely.
Mike Papantonio: The only thing, the only relationship is Paraquat. Now, the company that sells this has seen that play out time and time again, over the years. Scientific data said, yes, Paraquat causes Parkinson’s disease. But still we can buy it in the United States. Other countries you can, the country where it’s produced has taken it off the market. It’s banned.
Alex Taylor: Yeah. It’s banned in the EU since 2007. It’s even banned in China and Brazil now. I mean, there’s, there’s hardly any country that doesn’t ban this, except the EPA still hasn’t gotten around to it.
Mike Papantonio: Yeah. And the EPA, of course, as we’ve talked about before on this show, this is kind of your specialty is going after these corporations for this kind of conduct, the EPA is completely owned and operated by the chemical industry. I mean, that, that’s, that’s the big problem. We want to believe something different. But if you look at the history on this, there was, when we see the documents, the documents are going to show well below the 90s. I mean, we’re talking about 70s and maybe even earlier, this connection that they saw neurological disease related to this, to this herbicide and they, they could draw no other conclusion. It’s, it’s related, right?
Alex Taylor: Absolutely. I mean, the science has been around for decades and decades that this drug or this chemical, once it gets into your system, it oxidizes just about every part of your body, including parts of your brain, where the neurons deposit dopamine, which is what leads to this Parkinson’s disease.
Mike Papantonio: Yeah. And you’re one of the specialist handling it. Good luck with it, okay. It’s going to be a big fight as you know.
Alex Taylor: You bet, thanks Pap.
Mike Papantonio: Thank you for joining me.
Popular Herbicide Paraquat Found To Cause Parkinson’s Disease & Permanent Health Problems
Mike Papantonio: A popular herbicide called Paraquat has been linked to dangerous and permanent health problems including Parkinson’s disease and chronic lung disease. This herbicide has been used for decades in the United States, while other countries have banned it because it’s so toxic. Joining me to talk about this is attorney Greg Coleman, who is in the middle of this litigation. Greg, let’s start with the basics. How long has this herbicide been used and who makes it and what are the health problems we’re seeing from it?
Greg Coleman: Well, thanks Mike. Yes, this is, as you indicated, a, a problem that’s been going on for years with what’s called Paraquat dichloride and it’s sold under the brand name Gramoxone. Now, Gramoxone has been sold since 1962. It was originally manufactured by Chevron and then since about 1986 in addition, Syngenta and Growmark had begun manufacturing the product. It’s been sold throughout the US and unlike other European countries, for example, 32 countries have banned this product because of its dangerous toxic levels. The US still allows the use of it for commercial and related application.
Mike Papantonio: Well we know, don’t we Greg, that the companies have known about the health issues for a very long time. Their own clinical data connected it up with, with, with absolute connection to aberrational DNA problems, cancer. And now we’re seeing for 20 years we’ve been seeing this issue about Parkinson’s disease develop more and more where we now know that par, that Paraquat will, does have relationship to Parkinson’s disease. So what, at what point does the company say, you know, enough? We’ve got 32 comp, countries around some of them third world countries, that have banned the use of this product. But we’re still using in the United States. At what point do they say we got to move on from this? They won’t, will they? They’ll squeeze every dime out of it won’t they?
Greg Coleman: No, Mike, we know how this works. Right? The companies are still making money. Why else would they be doing it? Especially when it’s been proven to have such dangerous health defects. For example, you mentioned how long it’s been known. There’ve been studies, for example, the 2009 Parkinson Institute study, which provided a relationship, a causal connection, if you will, between the chemical exposure of Paraquat with many different occupations, primarily among those agricultural workers. Then you have other articles. Again, we’re not talking about the peanuts comic strip here. We’re talking about the national institute of health, who published what was called the farming and movement evaluation study, or the acronym FAME, which established that people who use Paraquat listen to this, Mike, are a 250% more likely to develop Parkinson’s than nonusers. And remember that circle is not just those who use the product, it’s those who are exposed to the product. Well, that could be your family, that could be neighbors, that could be those that are close enough in proximity to the area because we all know it’s, it’s in the air, it’s in the ambient atmosphere, and it can spread in that fashion.
Mike Papantonio: Well, let me just give you some examples. There’s, there’s a, there’s an over-spray problem that we saw with the, the whole ugly, ugly saga with, with Roundup. This is Roundup on steroids. I mean, I, I’ve, I handled the Roundup, I’m, I’m handling the Roundup case. This is Roundup on steroids because of the elements that we’re, that we’re seeing where there’s a connection between it obliterating DNA, changing the formation of DNA, cancer relationships, attacking the liver, attacking the kidneys, attacking the lungs. Now we know there’s neurological data. At what point do we have politicians say no more? It won’t happen, will it? Because this com, these companies are just too big and, you know, they’re too big to fail so to speak.
Greg Coleman: Well, think about it like this too as well, Mike. We know since Roundup was uncovered, obviously that’s an ongoing case, although there has been reported by the news, there is some developments going on there, but Paraquat in a lot of cases has been used to sort of bridge any gap from the lack of use, if you will, of Roundup because of what’s been going on legally. But here’s the thing, Mike, Paraquat has been shown to be even more toxic than Roundup, than glyphosate, which of course was the herbicide or the chemical involved in Roundup. And in fact, you mentioned what the legislation is going to do or what should it do. In, in March of 2016, the EPA, our environmental protection agency, expressed its intent to pursue risk mitigation measures for Paraquat after evaluation, after evaluating some of the incident data, including a large body of epidemiological data. And this is what they found. They found that absolutely, there was a connection. Then in July of 2009.
Mike Papantonio: Yeah. Greg, we’re short on time, but I want to tell you, we’ll get you back on as this case, as, as you develop this case further. It’s an important one. Thank you for being out there talking about it because it doesn’t seem like there’s a lot of people talking.
Greg Coleman: Sure.
Mike Papantonio: Certainly the media is not talking about it, again. Thank you for joining me. Okay.
Greg Coleman: Thank you so much.