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In a massive and highly complex legal settlement covering the majority of the claims against Monsanto, a U.S. company that makes the weedkiller Roundup, its parent, Bayer Corporation, will pay nearly $11B to settle approximately 95,000 claims and set aside $1.25 billion for potential claims from Roundup customers who may develop cancer in the future. Roundup is alleged to cause non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and plaintiffs will receive, depending on the strength of their cases, payments of $5,000 to $250,000. Bayer had revenue of $49 billion in 2019, and bought Monsanto in 2018 for $63B — analysts said a settlement of $10B would be fair, according to CBS News. Mediator Ken Feinberg, who also helped dole out settlement money in the BP Deepwater Horizon case, was instrumental.
Why This Matters: This must end the debate about whether Roundup can still be sold to consumers. Now the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) should do its job and get these products containing toxic glyphosate off the shelf and protect people, not corporations. Instead, the agency maintains that “there are no risks of concern to human health when glyphosate is used according to the label and that it is not a carcinogen.” We doubt the EPA will change direction, even if Bayer has. But that does not make it right.
Thousands of Lawsuits, Many Losses
Last year, a jury in California awarded more than $2 billion to a couple who sued Monsanto saying that exposure to the weed-killer Roundup caused them to contract cancer, including $55 million in “compensatory” damages to make them whole for their injuries, and $2 billion in punitive damages to punish Monsanto for its reckless disregard for human health. The plaintiff’s case relied heavily on a 2015 Report by the World Health Organization that concludes that the chemical in Roundup, glyphosate, is “probably carcinogenic to humans.” Thousands of similar cases were pending in courts all over the country. Mr. Feinberg is an expert at resolving complex, multi-jurisdictional cases like this one and overseeing the process of payouts for all those seeking redress. Juries also found Monsanto liable in two other cases with big payouts, though judges in each case reduced the awards. These cases are on appeal now and were not part of the settlement.
by Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer The Weather Channel broadcast that this summer, the U.S will be a “tick time-bomb,” in that ticks will afflict much broader swathes of the country than in years previous. Even in dry states like California, which is in a historic drought, researchers have been seeing more ticks than ever, […]
Greenways are bike paths that often serve as multi-use, car-free ways to navigate a city. Right now, the U.S. network “comprises a similarly haphazard collection of park-like bicycle- and pedestrian-oriented paths,” as CityLab reports, but that could change if environmental and transportation advocates can land $10 billion for a Greenway Stimulus in the infrastructure deal being negotiated in Congress right now.
Why This Matters: Getting people out of cars and into other modes of getting around is one of the best ways to ramp down carbon emissions in the transportation sector as well as ramp up health and fitness.
Preventing and preparing for pandemics is now a crucial task for world leaders. A crucial part of preventing pandemics is the protection of nature and the conservation of biodiversity. This week we had a chance to ask Conservation International’s new pandemic prevention fellow, Dr. Neil Vora, about why safeguarding our natural world is so important […]
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