Amazon settles with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over 4,000 toxic violations
(NaturalHealth365) Internet juggernaut Amazon of Seattle, WA must pay over $1.2 million in costs as part of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) agreement. Why, you may wonder? Because Amazon recently faced allegations that they committed around 4,000 Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act violations over the last five years.
The company allowed third party companies to sell dubious pesticide products via Amazon’s warehouse distribution system. These pesticides were not licensed in the U.S., and sale of these products was illegal. But, that didn’t stop one of the worst online retailers from putting profits over public safety concerns.
One can only hope that this ‘settlement’ will help protect consumers from the online sale of misbranded and outright illegal pesticides.
Amazon helps to sell products saturated in pesticides designed to appeal to children
The EPA hopes this substantial fine, the largest of its kind, will serve as a deterrent to both the Amazon company and other online outlets to engage in such activities. After all, there’s no debate: these pesticides pose a serious threat to human health in both rural and urban communities.
One of the most troublesome products offered is comprised of chalk that is saturated with pesticides. It can be used to draw a barrier around areas to help deter pests from entering. What’s most problematic is that this product arrives in bright packaging that makes it appealing to children. It could all too easily be mistaken for sidewalk chalk or candy.
The terms of the EPA agreement require Amazon to develop an online training course to inform vendors about pesticide policies and regulations. The goal is to reduce the number of illegal pesticides available online. This training will be mandatory for any company that wishes to sell pesticides on Amazon.
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Around 80 pesticides have been linked with life-threatening diseases
The investigation of Amazon for violations related to the sale of pesticides began in late 2014. After determining that illegal pesticides were being sold via the company’s marketplace, they were given a warning in 2015. An additional warning followed in 2016 after misbranded and unregistered pest bait products were being sold. Further violations ultimately led to the $1.2 million dollar fine the company is now faced with.
Pesticides are associated with a range of health issues. Research has determined that 28 commonly used pesticides are linked with a higher risk of cancer. Nearly 80 have been linked with life-threatening and serious disorders or diseases. Pesticide exposure is also linked with reproductive and nervous system disorders.
Avoid the toxic chemicals in pesticides and favor natural solutions
In addition to cancer, pesticide exposure has been linked with higher incidents of Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, endocrine disruption, respiratory issues, and developmental disorders in children. We, at NaturalHealth365, continue to ‘sound the alarm’ about these issues – because none of this should be acceptable in a caring society.
No doubt, these products should be avoided whenever possible in favor of natural solutions for pest control. Essential oils (neem, citrus and lemon grass), diatomaceous earth, vinegar or plain old soap and water can all be an effective deterrent for many pests.
More (obvious) tips include: keeping countertops clean and dry; avoid leaving wet dishes in the sink and be sure to fix any source of water leaks in the home, as soon as possible.
And, finally, always favor organic fruits and vegetables to help minimize your pesticide exposure within the diet. Over time, these efforts will pay off – ‘big time!’
Sources for this article include:
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