By Lynsey Downie (@Lynsey_BreatheN)
Subedited by: Zahida Khan and Jasmine Wing
American women in the Midwest have been left at risk due to unsafe levels of Atrazine in their drinking water since Atrazine leaching.
The popular pesticide has leaked from rivers and streams into American drinking water. An American study carried out by the Vermont Department of Public Health found women living in Illinois farm towns were five times more likely to report irregular periods and more than six times likely to have six-week gaps between periods compared to Vermont based women.
Despite the European Union banning Atrazine in 2004, America continues to allow Atrazine to be used as a pesticide, after more than 150 studies the previous year had shown evidence of Atrazine safety concerns.
Atrazine is used in approximately 75% of all U.S. cornfields each year and is becoming increasingly more popular. Despite American’s still allowing atrazine to be used as a pesticide, the European Union banned it in 2004 after more than 150 studies the previous year had shown evidence of atrazine safety concerns. The EPA are still evaluating Atrazine’s health effects and is currently waiting for scientific advisory panel results. This investigation has been going on since 2009.
Data suggests Atrazine causes menstrual cycle disruption with the concentration of the pesticide the drinking water in farm towns is double compared to the concentration in Vermont. The study supports the belief that those living in farming areas in the Midwest of the United States are at higher risk to Atrazine containment.
Despite experiments, carried out on rats, shows Atrazine can alter hormones and delay puberty, American still remains ignorant to its fatal risks. The concentrations of Atrazine in the farm town and Vermont water supplies were below the federal drinking water standard which is currently enforced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The manufacturer of Atrazine has criticised these results suggesting data could be caused by other factors such as diet and stress. However, in farm towns, women who drunk more than two cups of water a day showed greater menstrual irregularities suggesting the water supply affected the results.
In 2012, Syngenta, the large manufacturer of Atrazine, paid $105 million to more than 100 municipal water systems in the U.S. to help cover the removal of atrazine from drinking water, Syngenta denies any liability.
Meanwhile, American’s women still wait for their health and fertility to be protected!