Household weed killer Roundup linked to cancer

The world’s most popular weed killer has been linked to cancer, after the World Health Organisation warned that chemical glyphosate "probably causes cancer".

Glyphosate is an herbicide marketed as "RoundUp" and is commonly used in sensitive areas such as households, gardens and playgrounds.

Councils across Australia are continuing to use the chemicals, despite the findings and petitions from residents, the ABC reported.

France banned the sale of Roundup in nurseries in June last year. Photo: AFP

The Federal Department of Health and the Australia Pesticide and Veterinary Medicine Authority are now re-assessing the risk of glyphosate on humans.

According to the ABC, the investigation will be finalised by June.

Last year, the International Agency for Research on Cancer upgraded its assessment of Round Up from ‘possibly’ to "probably carcinogenic to humans".

Local councils have been advised to look alternatives to glyphosate, however some government bodies have rejected the notion, claiming that substitutes are more expensive and less effective.

Councils are continuing to use the chemical in playground and parks despite the warning from WHO. Photo: Reuters

Council do not have to inform the public of the use of the chemical, unless authorised to do so by authorities, the Daily Mail reported.

Some countries have already banned glyphosate, including Sri Lanka, El Salvador and the Netherlands.

RonundUp is manufactured by Monsanto, the same chemical company that created "Agent Orange", used in the Vietnam War to clear jungle but found to cause severe health problems - including birth defects - to veterans and the local population exposed to it.


Health concerns over council’s use of Round up

Members of a concerned community group donned full hazardous material suits to deliver a petition for Auckland Council to halt the use of the weed-killing chemical Glyphosate

News break – February 16