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Agriculture: Pesticides

Volume 706: debated on Wednesday 14 January 2009

Questions

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what evidence they have received of harm to the health of persons living in the vicinity of crop-sprayed areas from the use of sprayed pesticides. [HL264]

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the risks to the health of persons residing in the vicinity of crop-sprayed areas from the use of sprayed pesticides. [HL265]

The protection of human health is paramount. Before they are approved pesticides are rigorously assessed using a wide range of data analysed using internationally recognised risk assessment methods. We do not approve pesticides if we are concerned about possible effects on people, including users, consumers, bystanders and residents.

There is a range of methods by which the Government receive information related to whether the use of pesticides could be causing harm. Possible incidents can be reported to, and investigated by, the Pesticides Incidents Appraisal Panel (PIAP). The Government also monitor scientific literature and commission research, including studies on suggested associations between specific pesticides and potential long-term effects or illnesses.

Pesticide product approval holders are also required by law to inform the Government of any adverse data relating to their products.

The Government are advised by the independent Advisory Committee on Pesticides (ACP). The ACP regularly considers any new information available regarding possible effects related to pesticides and advises on what action is required.

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what proposals they have for altering regulations governing the protection of persons living and working in the vicinity of crop spraying operations following the judgment of the High Court in Downs v Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. [HL266]