The CHE-Alaska Working Group provided an update on herbicide spraying issues in Alaska. The State of Alaska Department of Transportation is proposing to use herbicides along transportation corridors in Southeast Alaska. The Alaska Railroad is currently using herbicides. Other agencies are proposing expanded herbicide use to control invasive species on public lands and waters. Many people believe that if the EPA has approved a particular herbicide then it must be “safe.” Unfortunately, this is far from true. What are possible effects of these chemical mixtures and what are safer alternatives? There is mounting scientific evidence that some EPA-approved herbicides, as well as so-called “inert” ingredients in the formulas have adverse health effects. This call discussed how the EPA approves herbicides for use and why the process fails to protect public health, plus the latest science on widely used herbicides such as glyphosate and 2,4-D and efforts in Alaska to establish buffer zones and restore public participation.
Pam Miller, Executive Director, Alaska Community Action on Toxics
Dr. Jennifer Sass, Senior Scientist in Natural Resource Defense Council’s Health and Environment program and Professorial Lecturer at George Washington University
Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins, Alaska State Representative for Alaska’s thirty-fourth district which encompasses many Southeast island communities