The Council of State has ordered the government to respect its injunctions by setting extended safety distances near homes for the spreading of certain pesticides, in a decision consulted this Friday by AFP.
The highest administrative court sets two months for the government to review its copy, under penalty of a penalty of 500 euros per day of delay, in this decision rendered on Thursday. The Council of State highlights the “seriousness of the consequences of the partial failure to perform in terms of public health” and “the particular urgency which results therefrom”.
It had been seized by several organizations, including Générations futures, France Nature Environnement and the consumer association UFC-Que Choisir, which have criticized the State for several years for not sufficiently protecting local residents from the spreading of pesticides suspected of being harmful to human health.
“The government still does not act effectively”
In July 2021, the Council of State had canceled a 2019 decree, considering in particular that it provided for insufficient safety distances for so-called “CMR 2” substances, that is to say substances suspected of being carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic to reproduction. Concerning “CMR1” products, whose harmfulness is established, an incompressible distance of 20 meters has been established. For “CMR2”, the government had indicated in January 2022 that a distance of 10 meters would apply by default from October 1, 2022, unless the marketing authorization (MA) of the substance provided for a other distance.
“The State has dangled the adoption of (regulatory) texts concerning these CMR2s but this has not been done for the moment”, pointed out to AFP the lawyer for the applicant organizations, François Lafforgue. “Since 2017, the applicant associations and organizations have continued to file appeals to obtain better protection for local residents and workers in contact with pesticides. They obtained three decisions from the Council of State – in 2019, 2021 and 2022 – and despite this the government is still not acting effectively enough, ”deplores Me Lafforgue. “We are expecting the government to really reopen this file to take the necessary measures, urgently and before spreading starts up again in the spring! press the Future Generations association in a press release.
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