'The decisions behind Monsanto's weed-killer crisis
A tongue-tip taste of what happens when regulatory regimes are weakened in a complex technological society. Of course, people who adhere to the anti-regulation suicide cult will be unaffected by any views which are sane.
In early 2016, agri-business giant Monsanto faced a decision that would prove pivotal in what since has become a sprawling herbicide crisis, with millions of acres of crops damaged.
Monsanto had readied new genetically modified soybeans seeds. They were engineered for use with a powerful new weed-killer that contained a chemical called dicamba but aimed to control the substance’s main shortcoming: a tendency to drift into neighboring farmers’ fields and kill vegetation.
The company had to choose whether to immediately start selling the seeds or wait for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to sign off on the safety of the companion herbicide.
The firm stood to lose a lot of money by waiting....
Dicamba is cheap, plentiful, and has been used as a weed killer for decades. But its tendency to damage nearby fields had caused U.S. regulators to limit its use....