PDF 313 KB - Pesticide Action Network UK


PDF 313 KB - Pesticide Action Network UK

A charity concerned

with the environmental

and health problems

of pesticides





...industry should...

use containers that

are safe (eg not attractive

to or easily opened by

children), particularly

for the more toxic

home use


International Code of

Conduct on the Distribution

and Use of Pesticides (Amended

version), Food and Agriculture

Organisation of the United

’Nations, 1989

A child plays with a

discarded insecticide

container in Laos,

December 1998

1 Contents

12 Chairperson’s report for the year / Making a difference 4 Pesticides in the UK and EU

14 Local Authority Project and Green Flag Park Awards 5 Pesticides exposure line

16 Pesticides News and information service 7 Pesticide Action Network–partnerships for change

17 Global hazards and sustainable solutions 9 African resources / Obsolete pesticides

10 The cotton project 11 Bhopal action–industrial hazard and human rights / Management / Accounts


Chairperson’s Report

for 1998

Making a difference

The past year has brought significant developments in

the struggle to control hazardous chemicals and the

excesses of free trade.

The Rotterdam Convention made the Prior Informed

Consent process (PIC) legally binding, giving governments

the right to ensure hazardous chemicals are not

imported into their country and requiring exporters not

to export them. Negotiations began for a Convention to

phase out Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) – many

of which are pesticides.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and

Development (OECD) and the UN Food and Agriculture

Organisation (FAO) established links to promote a new

vision of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) between

countries of the North and South – FAO has already pioneered

farmer participatory ecological IPM through

farmer field schools.

Environmental, consumer, health, farming and development

groups challenged patenting and called for international

regulation under the Convention on Biodiversity

to keep open access to life forms.

In Europe, including the UK, there was major concern

about genetically engineered crops, their impacts, the

lack of consumer choice and the dictation of the agricultural

agenda by corporations.

In the UK, the long term health effects of particular

pesticides was at last recognised by the joint report

Organophosphate sheep dip from the Royal College of

Physicians and the Royal College of Psychiatrists. The

Joint Nature Conservation Committee highlighted the

accumulated research evidence of dramatic declines in

farmland birds mainly attributed to the indirect impacts

of pesticides. A significant and welcome development

in the UK, partly resulting from concerns over pesticides,

health and genetically engineered crops, has

been a dramatic increase in organic food sales and

farm conversion.

We in the Pesticides Trust with others now have the

chance within reform of the Common Agricultural Policy

(CAP), trade negotiations, and advice and aid packages

to press for genuine ecological agriculture and

organic production. There have been positive steps to

eliminating the hazards of pesticides during

1998, but there is still a great deal to do.

Joy Greenall Earthcare Consultancy

The Pesticides Trust promotes healthy food,

agriculture and a sustainable, safe environment

to provide food and meet public health

needs without dependence on toxic chemicals.

We work for the elimination of pesticide

hazards, and promote policies and practices

which minimise exposure of workers, consumers

and communities to pesticides. The

sustainable alternatives we propose are based

on farmer and community participation and on

knowledge of ecological agriculture. The aim is

to grow safe and nutritious food, and support

farming and rural communities to become

independent of the pesticide treadmill. The

Pesticides Trust is an independent charity. We

work nationally and internationally with likeminded

groups and individuals concerned with

health, environment and development to:

● Eliminate the hazards of pesticides

● Reduce dependence on pesticides

● Promote sustainable and ecological

alternatives to chemical pest control

Strategies for change


In our journal, Pesticides News, and in briefing

papers, reports and books we publish unique

and independent information on pesticides.

Users of these resources include governments

and decision-makers, researchers, farmers,

trade unions, public interest groups, those

affected by pesticides, the media, academics,

educational bodies and the general public.

Support for field work

In partnership with public interest groups in

developing countries, the Trust supports pilot

projects to demonstrate the viability of

conversion to organic systems as a means of

providing farmers with economically viable,

socially acceptable and environmentally sound


Networking and capacity building

The Trust is part of a world-wide coalition, the

Pesticide Action Network (PAN). We work

closely with PAN partners on joint projects

and develop capacity to participate effectively

in national and international initiatives which

strengthen pesticide controls and promote

sustainable alternatives.


Peter Beaumont



Barbara Dinham



David Buffin Mark Davis

Editor, Pesticides Project

News and Current Coordinator

Research Monitor

Dorothy Myers

Cotton Project


Alison Craig



Support Line

David Allen

Office Manager

Ethan Irungu

Finance Officer


Understanding the cause and effect of pesticide

problems on men and women and on the

environment is a prerequisite for reducing

their hazards. The Trust undertakes and

targets appropriate research.

PoIicy advocacy

The Trust represents pesticide-related

concerns of users, consumers and exposed

communities at national, regional and international

levels to encourage the development

and implementation of progressive policies.

Problems with pesticides

Pesticides are toxic chemicals used to kill or

control pests. Global use is expanding and

new technologies like genetically engineered

seeds are increasing dependence on them.

There is widespread rejection by the public

and some decision-makers of relying on toxic

chemicals for food, health and livelihoods.

Pesticides create problems:

...to health

In developing countries poor working conditions

leave three million farmers and agricultural

workers poisoned and result in 20,000

unintentional deaths a year. Many pesticides

are acutely toxic, others are associated with

cancer, neurological and other chronic effects

and adversely effect the reproductive health of

women and men.

...in the environment

Pesticides are the only chemicals designed to

be toxic and deliberately introduced to the

environment. Some pesticides persist for

decades leaving residues in soil, water and air.

Toxic chemicals have unintended impacts,

killing fish, birds and beneficial insects.

... in food and water

The long term and cumulative residues of

pesticides in food concern consumers. One

tablespoonful of concentrated pesticide could

pollute the water supply of 200,000 people for

a day. Misuse during application can lead to

illness or death. Pesticide use linked to monoculture

can undermine rather than enhance

food security, particularly in efficient small

scale farming systems in developing countries.

... to agriculture

The rapid expansion of new technologies like

genetic engineering is locking farmers further

into pesticide use. Crops protected by seed

patents prevent farmers from saving seeds

and undermines sustainable rural livelihoods in

developing countries. Once on the pesticide

treadmill it is difficult to revert to organic or

ecological agricultural systems without training

and some financial support. Ten companies

now control over 80% of the US$32 billion

global pesticide market, creating an influential

lobby for chemicals, often at the expense of

sustainable solutions.

... to the national, local and

household economy

The high cost of pesticides causes economic

problems for many women and men farmers,

especially in developing countries.

Sustainable rural livelihoods need systems

which build on local inputs. Leaking stocks of

highly hazardous and obsolete pesticides

threaten many community resources in developing

countries and the cost of disposal is

enormous. Uncounted costs include removing

residues from water, health costs of treating

affected individuals and poor health affecting

capacity to work.



National and Europe

Exposure line supports pesticide victims

Green Flag Park Awards

sets new standards for public parks

Local Authority Project supports councils

in eliminating pesticide hazards

Farmer information provides decision

guidance on pesticides for users

PAN Europe

building a voice in the EU, the largest

pesticide user and exporter in the world


Feeding the world without poisons promotes

sustainable agriculture and food security

Organic cotton

supports small scale African farming

communities producing organic cotton

Obsolete pesticides identifies urgent action

Enforceable regulation improves

global chemical management

African resources establishes and equips

centres to help farmers and regulators



Pesticides in

the UK and EU

Local Authority Project

and Green Flag Park


Proud winners of

The Green Flag Park

Awards 1998-99

Dramatic results from new research by the

Joint Nature Conservation Committee this year

showed that over the last 10–20 years, bird

populations have crashed as a result of the

indirect effects of pesticides. Public attention

focused on the costs of pesticides as a result.

This year has also seen the start of Common

Agricultural Policy (CAP) renegotiation, and we

hope that farmers will eventually be paid for

the way they farm instead of for how much

they produce. Access to information and

representation in decision-making is important

for consumers and for users of pesticides. The

anger about genetically modified crops shows

what can happen when one agrochemical corporation,

Monsanto in this instance, ignores

these concerns. Throughout the year the Trust

has been taking up consumer concerns on the

Pesticides Forum, the joint Ministry of

Agriculture Fisheries and Food and

Department of Environment, Transport and the

Regions body set up to discuss pesticides

minimisation. We also sit on the Working Party

on Pesticides Residues (WPPR), and the

Biocides Usage Group (BUG).

Reducing pesticide use in Europe

Agricultural policy under the CAP promotes

intensive pesticide use, but environmental

policy in Europe wants to reduce the pollution

caused by pesticides. The Trust was one of the

few public interest groups to attend the European

Commission’s workshops to debate these

issues, and argued for greater attention to be

paid to the non-target effects of pesticides and

the direct and indirect costs of pesticides use.

The Commission will be publishing new

proposals early in 1999.

The Local Authorities Project aims to help

organisations review their current pest control

strategies – be it in gardens, playing fields,

environmental health, timber treatment, road

verges or elsewhere – and develop policies

and strategies to encourage a flexible and

innovative approach to the management of

pest problems. The Trust has worked with 25

councils since 1993. The latest, the London

Borough of Brent joined in June 1998 and has

just completed an audit of their pest control

practices and pesticide use in order to evaluate

appropriate reduction strategies.

The fourth Local Authority Project workshop,

hosted by the London Borough of Southwark at

the award winning Chumleigh Gardens

Conference Centre on 10 February 1998 was

attended by member councils. Delegates presented

their own achievements and difficulties

encountered in reducing pesticide use. Ideas

and information were exchanged and updates

were given on legislation and policy.

Green Flag Park Awards

Now in its second year, the Green Flag Park

Awards made by the Pesticides Trust, and its

partners in the scheme, has gained momentum

and wider recognition. Croxteth Hall in

Liverpool was the venue in September for presenting

the Green Flag to the sixteen 1998/99

winners. The Award is judged on two major

themes, environmental sustainability and community

involvement. Building on the success of

the awards, and to further improvements in

public parks, the Steering Group decided to

publish a Green Flag Parks Guidance Manual

which will be available in March 1999. With the

management of many parks going through a

period of uncertainty and change, the arrival of

the Green Flag Park Award and its accompanying

Manual provide welcome and positive

goals for the future.

The Green Flag Park Awards have

provided an important and

creative incentive for park providers

and users to reassess the ways in which

these spaces are managed

The Rt Hon Michael Meacher,

Minister for the Environment


Pesticides exposure line

to control weeds

Enfys Chapman

We have found the

greatest incidence of

pesticide exposure in

the past two years has been

to OP head-lice treatment,

closely followed by accidental

exposure to glyphosate, which

is widely used by farmers and

local authorities

The Pesticides Trust receives hundreds of calls

a year from people who have been exposed to

pesticides and want to know more about them.

The Trust has initiated the Pesticide Exposure

Support Line in response to that need.

PEGS was set up in July 1988 following an article about

pesticides in The Independent. The need was to provide

an understanding ear, reinforced by personal

experience of battling with traumatic events and often

unsympathetic professional attention.

Our intention has been to act as a support group, and to

spread an awareness that, whilst in a perfect world

chemicals might be used safely, in real life incidents do

happen and there can be dire results.

Since it was founded, PEGS has responded to some

eleven thousand enquiries in ten years.

John and I want to thank all PEGS members for your

kind messages after we announced that we had decided

that the time had come for us to retire. The volume of

work was continuing to increase and we felt, as seventyyear-olds,

that we were not really able to give to it the

amount of care and attention it required. We are therefore

very grateful to the Pesticides Trust for agreeing to

take over the work of PEGS.

Enfys and John Chapman

Taking over the main functions of PEGS

(Pesticides Exposure Group of Sufferers) in

October, the Trust recruited a new project

officer, Alison Craig, to develop the work.

The adverse effects of pesticides range from

the minimal to complete collapse and inability

to function; and sadly in some cases, suicide.

The people who contact the support line range

from the simply curious, to those who are really

ill, and who are, in some cases, utterly desperate.

The callers may be farmers who have

been spraying or dipping, or, just as likely, their

families. Women and children who are involuntarily

exposed to pesticides by others can

suffer debilitating long-term effects which can

go unnoticed and unrecorded.

Callers may have come into contact with pesticides

in the home, or they may have had

accidents with hazardous garden chemicals.

Exposures are often a rural hazard, but not

exclusively so: inappropriate use of pesticides

by some local authorities can cause problems.

The aims of the project are

● to point people who have had a pesticide

exposure – quite often long-term, low-dose –

in the direction of prompt and sympathetic

medical help

● to provide accurate information about many

hazardous pesticides

● to ensure that pesticide exposure incidents

enter official records

● to accumulate evidence to inform policy

research, encouraging regulators and

decision-makers to deal more effectively with

problems of pesticide exposure

● to support victims, as far as possible, in their

efforts to gain compensation for their injuries

Building on recent work by the Royal Colleges

of Physicians and Psychiatrists on the effects

of long-term low-dose exposure to sheep-dips,

the PEGS project has been an informed point

of contact for dozens of callers since October,

advising on treatment options, and working

with them to develop self-help strategies.

The aim this year is to use the depth of PEGS’

and the Pesticides Trust’s experience to best

effect, and to develop an expert advice service

for exposure sufferers. No statutory agency is

fulfilling this much needed function.



Pesticides News and

information service

Pesticides News (PN) and its supplement

Current Research Monitor (CRM) are published

quarterly and circulate world-wide, carrying a

unique health and environmental perspective

on pesticides and sustainable development.

In 1998 PN was mailed to 94 countries, and

overall distribution increased by 10%. We continued

our programme of sending PN free by

doubling the number distributed to interested

NGOs and governments in the South.

During 1998, 50 guest authors together with

Pesticides Trust staff contributed articles to

Pesticides News combining up-to-date news

items with regular features on topical issues.

During the year the public clamour against the

introduction of genetically modified (GM)

organisms continued to gain momentum.

Transnational corporations have enormous

budgets to promote GM, and yet the general

public still rejects this technology, the

implications of which are uncertain. The

agricultural journalist John Madeley took on the

industry position by publishing 12 GM counterclaims

in PN. Iceland, one of the UK’s major

supermarkets, has given GM food a frosty

reception. In an interview for PN, Malcolm

Walker, the company’s chief executive, stated

his anti-GM-food stance, and explained how

he ensures that GM-free food is available in

his shops.

Old technology still raises concerns – BBC

journalist John Harvey reported on the health

problems experienced by grain farmers who

had used the neurotoxic organophosphate

(OP) insecticides to protect against

grain beetles.

Acute ill-health problems continue to persist

among those using pesticides in Third World

countries. We highlighted a report written by

Douglas Murray for the Danish Agency for

International Development on pesticide use in

Guatemala and Nicaragua. It concluded that

many highly hazardous products, such as OP

insecticides, are still regularly imported into

these countries that do not possess adequate

facilities to deal with them.

In other international reports, we cited work

carried out in Vietnam by Steffen Johnsen and

his colleagues on the impact of broad spectrum

insecticides on the natural predators of

pests, questioning whether they are

compatible with integrated pest management


Pesticides News enables

me to understand what

impacts pesticides have

on sustainable development

and on the environment

Terefe Klondafrash,

Teppi Coffee Plantation

Development, Ethiopia

Library and resources

The Pesticides Trust library is now widely

recognised as a unique source of independent

information on pesticides. We have specialised

in acute and chronic health effects, and the

environmental fate of these chemicals as they

appear in food, water, air and soil. We hold

information on many more issues, eg economic

impacts and sustainable alternatives.

Our research database, which includes all

entries from 42 issues of CRM, enables bibliographic

research listings to be produced by

keyword searching. Gender issues are clearly


A whole range of people and organisations

seek advice and information. Our top five information

requests by subject were: organophosphates;

genetically modified organisms; food

residues; specific active ingredients; and pesticides

used in the home.

We also carried out a survey of those members

of the public, who had used our

information resources during the year. Their

priorities for our work, in descending order,

were – genetically modified organisms, public

education, pesticides in food and water, promoting

alternatives to pesticides and urban

pesticide use.

The Pesticides Trust web page

Developments to the Pesticides Trust web site

in 1998 highlighted our work. Web pages are

used to advertise new Trust publications. A

selection of articles from Pesticides News (15

this year) continue to be published online

along with updates of project work, our publications

list, and a comprehensive page of links

to pesticide groups and resources worldwide.

During the year, the number of ‘hits’ (people

visiting our website) more than doubled in line

with our increased web presence.


Pesticide Action Network

Partnerships for change

I am astonished at

the excellence of the

work which you do,

and I suspect that only a

fraction of the people who

should be aware of your

activities actually are

Joe King, retired

civil servant, UK

Pesticide Trust’s touring

exhibition stand

Protesters outside

the 5th HCH and

Pesticides forum

meeting campaigning

against lindane

By working with

many groups to

stop pesticide

problems and promoting


alternatives we

can achieve


Pesticides Action

Network (PAN) has

a co-ordinating

centre in five

regions: Africa,

Asia, Europe, Latin

America and North

America, which

keeps groups in

close contact with

farmers and others

working at field

level. Globally, PAN coordinates to ensure

information about pesticide problems and sustainable

solutions are widely available, and to

influence decision-makers nationally and internationally.

Established in 1982, PAN links over

300 organisations in 60 countries.

In 1998 the Trust hosted the annual planning

meeting of PAN Regional Co-ordinators at the

Royal Agricultural College in Cirencester, taking

in a farm visit to the Prince of Wales’

organic farm.

The international activities of PAN are linked

under the theme Feeding the World Without

Poisons: Supporting Healthy Agriculture, and

every three years PAN holds an international


The Trust works very closely with the African

region, developing joint programmes and helping

to build national capacity to address

pesticide problems. Our African Resources

project (see page 9), underlines our commitment

to this activity.

Networks for change

Food security, particularly in developing countries,

underpins much of our international programme

and the Trust plays an active role in

the UK Food Group, an alliance of environment,

development, farming, health and consumer

organisations working to ensure that

the agricultural policies of Europe and trade

liberalisation do not undermine food security in

developing countries.

The explosion of genetically engineered crops

is inextricably linked to use of pesticides, promoting

herbicide-resistant seeds and plants

with their own insecticide. The Trust is on the

Board of GRAIN (Genetic Resources Action

International), which campaigns to protect

farmers’ rights to breed seeds and promote


The Trust is also on the Council of the

Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Environment

(SAFE) Alliance and this year played an active

role in bringing about its merger with the

National Food Alliance, under the new name of


PAN Europe

The Trust and PAN-Germany collaborate as

regional coordinators for Europe, and in 1998

we organised the PAN Europe Conference to

strengthen activities and build better links in

Eastern Europe. Following the conference we

launched a quarterly PAN Europe Circular.

As a direct result of the meeting, PAN Europe

has stepped up its networking in a number of

areas. We wrote an open letter to Environment

Minister and European Members of Parliament

on the EU Water Framework Directive. PAN

members were concerned that pesticides

would remain completely unregulated under

the provisions of the framework proposal.

In September, PAN Europe called for an EUwide

ban on the production and use of the

insecticide lindane, signed by 24 consumer/

environmental/union organisations. The letter

went to the European Commission and all EU

Member State Agriculture, Environment and

Health Ministers.

Accompanying the letter, which was published

in Pesticides News, was a fact sheet citing

information that lindane persists in the environment

and is a possible human carcinogen.



Global hazards and

sustainable solutions

Some pesticides are just too

dangerous to be used safely

under the conditions of use


many developing countries

Prof Hermann Waibel, Pesticides Policy

Project, advisor to the Global IPM Facility

The international programme carries out research, information

gathering and dissemination, influences policy, raises

awareness, builds capacity with NGO partners, and provides

field level support.

Pesticides cross national boundaries through trade, but also

as persistent chemicals contaminating air, water and land.

Their health and environmental impacts cause excessive

damage in developing countries where users lack the training

and resources to use pesticides safely. Many third world governments

lack the necessary resources to monitor and control

pesticide use adequately. The social impact on smallscale

farming communities is profound, and can lead to a

pesticide treadmill of debt, increasing use and lower yields.

The major producers of pesticides are all located in Europe

and the US. The ten companies which control 80% of the

US$32 billion pesticide industry shape the face of agriculture

worldwide. The same companies are now leading the field in

genetically engineered crops and are taking a commanding

interest in seed companies, marketing seeds which resist

their pesticides. Trade liberalisation is opening more markets

for these companies without a corresponding increase in

safety to protect users and communities.

In 1998, our research on the industry analysed the impact

on food security and sustainable agriculture, helping to guide

policy and strategy. Playing an active role in the UK Food

Group enabled us to liaise effectively with a wide range of

development, environment, consumer and farming


Regulation of pesticide trade was strengthened in 1998. Prior

informed consent (PIC), which gives importing governments

the right to prohibit imports of certain hazardous pesticides,

will become international law following agreement of the

Rotterdam Convention in September. Our work on PIC dates

from 1989 and the final drafting addressed many of our concerns,

but implementation will provide a challenge.

Negotiations began on a convention to phase out the

production and use of persistent organic pollutants (POPs)

like DDT, and our work focuses on alternatives and on disposal

of the huge obsolete stocks which continue to

contaminate the environment and threaten people’s health.

Our work in promoting sustainable alternatives includes the

organic cotton project, and working for practical and policy

support for participatory approaches to Integrated Pest

Management (IPM), based on farmer field schools. We

encourage NGO input to IPM, and in 1998 provided input to

policy-level meetings. Our consultancy work with the

European Commission has provided a toolbox for desk and

technical officers and delegations to improve chemical

management and promote IPM in sub-Saharan Africa.

Unwelcome gifts–this unidentified pesticide is now part of

Ethiopia’s unwanted pesticide stockpile

Inspecting a drum of obsolete pesticides in Ethiopia


African resources

‘ ’

We cannot permit the careless adoption

of the products of science and technology.

When technology endangers life on earth

and oceans... the stakes are too high

Klaus Topfer, Executive Director, UNEP

Obsolete pesticides

Anne Wamuyu, a

farmer in Othaya,

Kenya, pouring

pesticides in a

knapsack sprayer for

application on

vegetable crops

African resources

A major achievement in 1998 was our

successful application to the National Lottery

Charities Board, which raised £300,000 over

three years for PAN partners to establish

pesticide resource centres in Senegal (PAN

Africa), Benin (OBEPAB) and Ghana (the

Ghana Organic Agriculture Network). Working

with the UK institute, Powerful Information, the

grant will be used to establish a programme of

training and public information by our three

African partner organisations. Partners will

raise awareness of pesticide hazards and

tackle the health and environmental problems

by promoting practical alternatives. The programme

is directed towards groups working

with more marginalised and disadvantaged

agricultural communities and involves:

● Setting up an information and documentation

centre to provide reliable, targeted, information

on the health and environmental hazards of

pesticides, and to address a lack of information.

This will include books, journals, and

access to specialist on-line information.

● Training and outreach programmes to disseminate

this information to: farmers,

agricultural extension and rural health workers;

regulators and policy makers; NGOs involved

with the farming communities; the public; and

the media.

● Researching into local farmer practice,

indigenous pest control and yield-enhancing

technologies to increase awareness of, and

credibility for, these strategies.

Obsolete toxic and persistent pesticides continue

to pose a serious threat to health and

the environment in developing countries. Many

of these pesticides which were supplied up to

40 years ago are also classed as persistent

organic pollutants (POPs) and are therefore

contaminating the global environment. Urgent

action is needed to clear these toxic dumps

and implement measures to prevent a

recurrence of the problem. However, at the

current rate of progress it will take 50 years to

clear Africa alone, and much longer to deal

with the global problem of obsolete pesticides.

1998 was a year of intense activity for the

Pesticides Trust in this area. In March we

participated as an NGO delegate and rapporteur

in the third FAO consultation on the prevention

and disposal of obsolete and unwanted

pesticide stocks in Africa and the Near

East. Technical aspects of disposal remain the

greatest problems.

In June we presented a paper at an international

conference in Bilbao of technical

experts on toxic waste management, on the

role of NGOs in international efforts for the

management of obsolete pesticide stocks.

In November we made a presentation on

obsolete pesticide concerns to the Pesticides

Forum of the OECD to raise awareness of the

issue among Member States. We also joined

an expert task force to Ethiopia which has one

of the biggest stockpiles of obsolete pesticides

in the world. We helped to assess the scale of

the problem and develop a proposal for

solutions. We have been active in encouraging

donors to contribute to an operation in

Ethiopia. We also authored guidelines on the

management of small quantities of waste pesticides

and empty containers to be published

in the FAO obsolete pesticides series.

Progress in clearing the developing world of

obsolete pesticides which were sold, donated

or dumped by the developed countries is

painfully slow. We consider it a priority to raise

awareness of this issue and encourage those

who contributed to the creation of the problem

to contribute to its solution. Our expertise in

the area also puts us in a position to monitor

the quality of clean-up operations and assist in

the implementation of effective prevention

measures based on better chemical management




The Cotton Project

The Cotton Project promotes the conversion of

conventional small-farmer cotton production to

farmer-centred agro-ecological systems in

which pesticide use is reduced or eliminated.

At field level in the South, the project has

focused on supporting organic systems in pilot

projects. The project aims to use knowledge

and experience gained to encourage others to

become involved. At the consumption end of

the cotton chain, it is important to create

awareness about alternative production

systems and to show that they can be both

possible and profitable. Greater consumer

awareness will act as a stimulus to the market

which in turn will create demand at the production

level. Activities during the year

included more intensive involvement in the

Senegal pilot project, increased dialogue with

the potential market for organic cotton in UK

and greater level of collaboration with PAN

groups in Germany and the USA, building

towards more joint activities on organic cotton

in the future. The year was marked by the

completion of the text of the first comprehensive

book on organic cotton for publication

in early 1999, Organic Cotton: from field to

final product.

Farmer support and

extension is crucial in

organic cotton pilot


One of the major benefits

(in India) was that women

were saved hours of time

previously spent hauling water from

3km away for ten applications

by knapsack spraying. Since 60-70%

of Farmer Field Schools group

members in cotton are women


The Koussanar project in Senegal continues to

be the project in which the Trust is most intensively

involved, with partners ENDA-Pronat.

The number of participating farmers increased

over the first three years of the project to 525

but has stayed stable at around that level in

the fourth season, 1998/9, following the recommendations

of an external evaluation which

took place in mid-1997. The support centre in

Koussanar is developing systems to enable

the local farmers’ organisations to eventually

assume management of the project. Several

tasks have already been transferred to farmers’

unions. Improved data collection and management

with computerisation will allow better

analysis of results including identification of

differences between men and women farmers

in the project. Women’s groups continue to

supply neem powder for control of pests. The

1998/9 crop will be certified organic and

ENDA-Pronat has now assumed the commissioning

and organisation of the organic certification

process. The Koussanar project is

increasingly called upon for visits by other

groups and to provide information based on

accumulated experience.


The Trust continued to support pilot project

conversion work with two groups about 300 km

from the capital, Cotonou, in partnership with

OBEPAB, a Beninese NGO. Harvesting has

now taken place in the third season. Closer

links have recently been established with pilot

projects in the north of the country with a view

to working together on cenification of the cotton

crops and exchange of experience and

information. Joint training with Senegal and

Zimbabwe is under discussion, drawing on the

experience developed in the pilot projects in

all three countries.


The pilot project in the north-east in the

Zambezi Valley is now in its fourth season. The

Trust continued to support the natural pest

control element of the work during 1998. The

1998-9 crop will be certified organic and

ginned, spun and manufactured in Zimbabwe

for export to a British mail-order company.

the benefits of reduced

pesticides were very apparent

‘Agriculture Man Ecology Project, India


The Bhopal Gas

Tragedy 1984–?

A report from the

Sambhavna Trust,

Bhopal, India

Bhopal action–

Industrial hazards

and human rights

The fourteenth anniversary of the Bhopal disaster

passed on 3 December 1998. More than

2,500 people died almost instantly, and over

16,000 people have died as a result of health

problems related to their exposures; 50,000

people are still suffering significant long term

health impacts and over 500,000 people filed

injury claims with the Bhopal Compensation

Courts. Union Carbide settled with the Indian

government for $470 million in 1989. The compensation

that has reached survivors works out

at 48p a week. Most can no longer work, or

eke out a meagre living. Many received nothing

at all. Miraculously, in Bhopal, despite all

the death and suffering, people are still struggling

for justice.

The Pesticides Trust supports the Bhopal

Medical Appeal, which raises funds for the

Bhopal People's Health and Documentation

Centre. The Centre was established in 1996 by

Sambhavna Trust and has piloted a neighbourhood

clinic, based on traditional Indian

(ayurvedic) and allopathic medicine, as well as

yoga, massage and diet, to alleviate the health

problems of sufferers. The work at the clinic

has achieved remarkable success, in contrast

to the medical strategies of local hospitals

which hand victims antibiotics and steroids,

looking only at symptoms. The work of the clinic

is now focusing particularly on the problems

of women affected by methyl isocyanate, many

of whom suffer reproductive disorders.

The funds have been largely raised through

the efforts ot Indra Sinha, writer and campaign

organiser who initiated the Bhopal Medical

Appeal, and has now developed an informative

interactive website http://www.bhopal.org/.

A book length annual report from Sambhavna

Trust for 1998 has been published and is available

from the Pesticides Trust.


Board of Directors

David Baldock Director, Institute for European Environment Policy

David Bull Director, Amnesty International

Alan Care Lawyer, Russell Jones Walker & Co, London

Amelia Garman Manager, Community Health & Environment Team

Brighton and Hove Council

Joy Greenall Earthcare Consultancy (formerly Farming and Wildlife

Advisory Group advisor)

Robin Jenkins Genetics Forum

Topsy Jewell Consultant

Ann Link Womens’ Environment Network

Jules Pretty Director, Centre for Environment and Society, University of Essex

Martin Tyler Director of Finance, Christian Aid

Stephanie Williamson Information Officer, CABI Biocides

Advisory Council

Czech Conroy Natural Resources Institute

Nigel Dudley Equilibrium Consultancy (formerly of Earth Resources Research)

Alastair Hay Department of Chemical Pathology, University of Leeds

Peter Hurst International Union of Foodworkers

Sarojini Rengam Director, PAN Asia/Pacific, Malaysia

Gregory Rose International lawyer, Australia

Abou Thiam Director, PAN-Africa, Senegal

Andrew Watterson Lecturer in Health and Safety, Department of Continuing

Professional Studies, DeMontfort University, Leicester

The Pesticides Trust is currently or has recently been supported by:

1970 Trust UK, Chapman Trust UK, Comic Relief UK, The Dinam Charity UK,

Directorate General for Development DGVIII – European Commission,

Directorate General for Environment DGXI – European Commission,

Environmental Action Fund UK, GTZ Germany

Katharine Hamnett Fashions Ltd UK, The Cuthbert Horn Charitable Trust UK

Karl & Olga Koerner Trust UK, Ludensian Foundation UK

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Netherlands, NOVIB Netherlands

Reuben & Elisabeth Rausing Trust UK, The Tides Foundation USA

UK Food Group, UN Food & Agriculture Organisation

The Zephyr Charitable Trust UK


Income by activity


Interest receivable £1,695

Pesticides News,

publications £29,457

Other income £11,399

Fundraising, publicity £11,770


administration £20,669

Research, education £39,867

Donations £46,027

Total Expenditure £72,306

Total Income £88,578

Cotton £138,989

International agriculture

and trade £50,056

Green Flag Award £47,275

Gender £9,541

African resources £54,065

PAN-Europe £19,008

Pesticides in Africa £36,956

Pesticide information £7,742

Pesticide exposure support £731

Pesticide disposal £15,000

Total Income £379,363

Expenditure by activity






Cotton £146,572

International agriculture

and trade £62,506

Green Flag Award £42,810

Gender £5,295

African resources £39,565

PAN-Europe £9,007

Pesticides in Africa £36,457

Pesticide information £20,354

Pesticide exposure support £10,731

Pesticide disposal £15,000

Total Expenditure £388,297

The Trust’s accounts are prepared by auditors Barcant Beardon in accordance with the

Statement of Recommended Practice Accounting by Charities published by the Charities

Commission. The Trust is a charity and therefore a non-profit organisation. The Trust’s

financial security is enhanced if a small overall reserve can be built up to cushion the effect

of delayed grants and other unforeseen contingencies and to provide limited working

capital. An overall picture is presented above from the Trust’s draft accounts. Full accounts

will be available in due course from the Trust.


Pesticides concern us all. The Trust relies on the

support of donors to help us to help others.

These are some of the issues we work on...

The World Health Organisation estimates

three million people are severely poisoned

from pesticides every year

The Trust works to reduce the hazards

from dangerous pesticides.

Pesticides are in food and water, and many

wildlife populations have declined sharply as a

result of the non-target effects of pesticides

The Trust makes the case with

decision-makers for lower-input policies.

Only 3% of the £3 billion spent on farm support

in the UK is currently allocated to environmentally

sensitive farming schemes

The Trust supports farmers to use less pesticides.

Corporate negligence caused the

disaster at the Bhopal pesticide factory

The Trust supports the only clinic currently

giving care to the affected population.

More pesticides are used on cotton than any other crop

The Trust’s organic cotton project helps farmers

make a sustainable living without pesticides.

Genetically modified crops will increase pesticide

use and should not be introduced into the food chain

The Trust believes that food security should not

be compromised by the corporate agenda.

Many people are affected by pesticide exposure or

concerned about acute and chronic effects on health

The Trust seeks improved support for

exposed individuals and communities.

The overselling of unnecessary pesticides to poor

countries has led to waste dumps that are more

dangerous and more expensive to deal with than

the pests were in the first place

The Trust highlights problems and works to

prevent such mistakes happening again.




Eurolink Centre, 49 Effra Road

London SW2 1BZ

Tel +44 (0)171 274 8895

Fax +44 (0)171 274 9084

Email pesttrust@gn.apc.org


Charity no. 327215 Company reg. no. 2036915

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