The European Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution on November 23 that objects plans to renew EU authorisation for Bentazone herbicide. MEPs argued that Bentazone can easily leak directly into groundwater and is suspected of interfering with human reproduction.

EU authorisation for this herbicide is due to expire on 30 June 2017. The European Commission has proposed that it be extended the maximum period possible – until 31 January 2032.

According to a European Parliament press release, MEPs pointed out that Bentazone’s consumer risk assessment has not been finalised and that data are missing, particularly on its potential for groundwater exposure. Moreover, a European Food Safety Authority peer review proposes classifying Bentazone as having suspected reproductive toxicity potential for humans (category 2).

The non-binding resolution, which was approved by 361 votes to 289, with 28 abstentions, calls on the European Commission to request and assess the relevant missing information before deciding on renewal of the authorisation.

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