Aerial Fumigation with glyphosate in the Putumayo, Colombia

After over a decade of dangerous contamination, aerial fumigation with the pesticide have ended in May 2015. A new anti-drug policy was approved and relocation of families started


<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns"><div class="less">In Colombia, the massive use of aerial fumigation to eradicate coca fields, as part of a strategy called Plan Colombia, has caused pesticide contamination of land and water, and serious health complaints from residents. The multinational firm Monsanto is the major manufacturer and retailer of Round-Up Ultra, a type of glyphosate used to fumigate illegal plantations. Monsanto has said this product is environmentally safe, denying any toxic effects on human health or environment. However, local rural and indigenous communities living in Putumayo, and other regions sprayed by herbicides, have reported that indiscriminate fumigation causes illnesses, destroys food crops and contaminates water supplies. The fumigations are to a large extent financed by US government aid programs. Still after more than ten years of aerial fumigations, their main purpose: the eradication of the coca plantations is far from being achieved. </div><a class="seemore" href="#">See more...</a><div class="more" style="display:none">In March 2015 the World Health Organization announced glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic to humans.” WHO report fostered Colombian and International associations’ claims. Backed up by the Colombian Health Ministry, the National Drugs Council suspended the fumigations on May 14th 2015 and also announced the constitution of a technical committee charged of changing the national plan fighting against drugs production. From October 1st 2015 the glyphosate fumigations have definitely stopped. <br/><br/><a class="seeless" href="#">(See less)</a></div></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>Aerial Fumigation with glyphosate in the Putumayo, Colombia</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/colombia">Colombia</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Province</td><td>Putumayo</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Putumayo</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>MEDIUM regional level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Biomass and Land Conflicts (Forests, Agriculture and Livestock Management)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Agro-toxics<br /> Deforestation<br /> Military installations</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td><a href='/commodity/pesticides'>Pesticides</a><br /><a href='/commodity/land'>Land</a><br /><a href='/commodity/water'>Water</a></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns"><div class="less">Before the fumigation started the aim was to eradicate 66,000 hectares of coca corps. By the year 2004, there were only 4,400 hectares left. The herbicide used was the glysphosate, which is composed of 74% of water, 18% of salt of glyphosate and 8% of surfactants. </div><a class="seemore" href="#">See more...</a><div class="more" style="display:none">The surfactant concentration of one active dose reaches 43 percent, with a dosage of 23, 4 liters per hectare. <br/><br/>Fumigations starting at 8 am till 4 pm, with periodic suspensions of a week to fifteen days. <br/><br/>With aerial fumigations the compound disperses in the surrounding environment within a 1 km range and stays in the soil for a minimum of 4 months to 3 years. <br/><br/><a class="seeless" href="#">(See less)</a></div></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Project Area (in hectares)</td><td>200000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Level of Investment (in USD)</td><td>7500000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Rural</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Start Date</td><td>06/2000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/monsanto-corporation'>Monsanto Corporation <small>(Monsanto Co)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/united-states-of-america'><small>United States of America </small></a><br /><a href='/company/dyncorp-international'>DynCorp International</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/united-states-of-america'><small>United States of America </small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>The government of Colombia, The government of the United States, The State Department’s International Narcotics and Law Enforcement, USAID</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">International and Financial Institutions</td><td><a href='/institution/world-health-organization'>World Health Organization <small>(WHO)</small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>Permanent Peoples Tribunal, ONIC - Colombia, Indigenous and peasant communities of the Putumayo, Accion Ecologica - Ecuador, Defensoria del Pueblo - Colombia, CONAIE - Ecuador, World Rainforest Movement, Amnesty International, Transnational Institute, Alianza Amazonica, Coordinadora Indigena de la Cuenca Amazonica (COICA), Putamayo Womens Alliance, the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA), Food & Water Watch</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>HIGH (widespread, mass mobilization, violence, arrests, etc...)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>In REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>Farmers<br /> Indigenous groups or traditional communities<br /> International ejos<br /> Local ejos<br /> Neighbours/citizens/communities<br /> Women<br /> Ethnically/racially discriminated groups<br /> Afro-colombian communities</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Creation of alternative reports/knowledge<br /> Involvement of national and international NGOs<br /> Street protest/marches</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Genetic contamination, Soil contamination, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Air pollution, Global warming, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Health Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Occupational disease and accidents, Infectious diseases, Deaths<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…), Other environmental related diseases</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Militarization and increased police presence, Violations of human rights</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>Stopped</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Deaths<br /> New legislation<br /> Under negotiation<br /> Violent targeting of activists<br /> The Monsanto corporation was accused of supplying toxic substances to Colombia, it was charged by the hearing on Biodiversity of the Permanent Peoples Tribunal. </td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Development of Alternatives</td><td>A new anti-drug policy in Colombia that invests in development and alternative crop programs that provide farmers a path out of the drug trade.</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>Yes</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Why? Explain briefly.</td><td>After WHO report asserting the potential risks of glyphosate on humans health, aerial fumigation of the pesticide have ended in May 2015. At the end of 2015, the Colombian National Drugs Council have adopted a new anti-drug policy. The plan considers the relocation of farming families, assisting them to switch crops. </td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Legislations</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Plan Colombia<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Patriot Plan<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Alternative Plan to substitute illicit crops called PLANTE<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Dietrich Heinz. Evaluacion del Plan Colombia en la region andina y el Ecuador.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.rebelion.org/hemeroteca/sociales/dieterich010701.htm" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Tribal Engagement Plan for Indigenous Cultures in Putumayo<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tribal_Engagement_Plan_for_Indigenous_Cultures_in_Putumayo,_Colombia.pdf" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Gonzalez Olga. Las mentiras del glifosato.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.rebelion.org/noticia.php?id=46275" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Resistencia civil de los pueblos indigenas frente al plan Colombia, Matti Mailer, 2004<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.selvas.eu/dossPC7es.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Visiones Alternativas<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.visionesalternativas.com/militarizacion/geoestrategia/pcolom.htm" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> SELVAS - Osservatorio Informativo Indipendente sulle Americhe<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.selvas.eu/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Relazione di Heinz Dieterich: valutazione del plan Colombia nella regione Andina<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.selvas.eu/dossPC2.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Plan Colombia: resistenza civile dei popoli indigeni, 02/01/2004<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.selvas.eu/dossPC7.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Tre anni di Plan Colombia, un anno di presidenza Uribe: "tanti auguri" alla pace sulle Ande…<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.selvas.eu/newsCO0203.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Fumigazioni: guerra chimica sulle Ande, 10/12/2003<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.selvas.eu/newsCO0303.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Incontro internazionale della societa’ civile che lotta contro il Plan Colombia<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.selvas.eu/dossPC5.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Cronologia documentada de las fumigaciones en Colombia (1978-2010)<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.mamacoca.org/docs_de_base/cronologia_documentada_de_las_fumigaciones.htm" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Fumigación e insurgencia, 06/05/2010<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://www.tni.org/en/node/14790" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> U.S. Policy in Colombia, Amnesty International<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/countries/americas/colombia/us-policy-in-colombia" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Colombia presenta un nuevo plan de política antidroga, S., Palomino, 23/09/2015<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://internacional.elpais.com/internacional/2015/09/22/actualidad/1442950930_608000.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Colombia da un giro en la estrategia de lucha contra el narcotráfico, 16/05/2015<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://internacional.elpais.com/internacional/2015/05/15/actualidad/1431660669_071508.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Even if Glyphosate Were Safe, Fumigation in Colombia Would Be a Bad Policy. Here's Why, I. Isacson, 29/04/2015<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.wola.org/commentary/even_if_glyphosate_were_safe_fumigation_in_colombia_would_be_a_bad_policy_heres_why" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> WHO Findings on Glyphosate’s Carcinogenicity Should Be Enough To Halt Colombia’s Controversial U.S.-Backed Coca-Spraying Program, 05/05/2015<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.wola.org/news/who_findings_on_glyphosate_s_carcinogenicity_should_be_enough_to_halt_colombia_s_controversial_" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Media Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Plan Colombia Putumayo, Drug and Democracy<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://www.tni.org/en/archives/act/16697" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other Documents</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Source: http://latincorrespondent.com/2015/09/colombia-will-stop-coca-crop-glyphosate-fumigation/<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://file.ejatlas.org/docs/glyphosate_Putumayo.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Contributor</td><td>Lucie Greyl</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>04/01/2016</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>
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