Pesticides, Indoor Air Quality and COVID-19

05/01/2020


For understandable reasons the government does not have décidé́ to confine farmers.

With the arrival of spring, agricultural spraying near homes has therefore resumed.

However, due to the health crisis caused by Covid-19 the consultations on the distances sécurité́ between homes and the pesticide spraying that were foreseen by law were not carried out.

The French Ministry of Agriculture authorized a reduction of the distances to the minimum possible, from the beginning of the season of the sprayings.

In its 4th version, dated March 30, 2020, a decree of the Ministry of Agriculture in fact authorizes in the period of containment, additional derogations inadmissible to the non-treatment zones.


Pollutions that makes people more sensitive to COVID-19

This is of particular concern since, in addition to the deleterious effects of pesticides, it is recognized that any pollution aggravates the effects of Covid-19.

Air pollution, exposure to pesticides and endocrine disruptors are responsible for an increase in chronic diseases and cancers.

All these conditions make our immune system less efficient against Covid-19.

ATMO-France considers air pollution as an aggravating factor in case of Covid 19 infection.

Associations such as "Générations Futures" or "Reporterre" have reacted and are campaigning for better protection of local residents suffering from pesticide spraying.


Safety distances that are already too small, reduced even further...


"As a reminder, at the end of December, the government had defined "non-treatment zones". The distances between pesticide applications and the property lines of the houses bordering the fields had been set at : Ten meters for tall crops such as fruit trees or vines; Five meters for other crops such as wheat, corn, rapeseed, vegetables, etc... Twenty meters, whatever the type of crop, for the most dangerous substances. Adopted at the same time, a decree required each department to adopt "user commitment charters". Once adopted, they allow the reduction of these distances to : Five meters for vines and arboriculture, three meters for the other crops, the twenty meters remaining for the most dangerous substances. This is achieved by using "anti-drift systems", spreaders that must allow phytosanitary products to reach their targets with a minimum of loss."

What precautions should be taken, given that children are particularly vulnerable?

  •     Read any treatment notices, close windows and do not go out in the garden or on terraces during spraying.
  •     Report unsuitable behaviour: spraying distances, weather conditions.
  •     Ventilate and remove dust after treatments.
  •     Carry out a dust analysis to obtain a measure of the residual pollution in your home.

Domestic Pesticides Test

Indoor air quality diagnosis to measure indoor environmental pollution by pesticides: insecticides, herbicides and fungicides. Test with laboratory analysis. Order your Test

Agricultural Pesticides Test

Indoor air quality diagnosis to measure indoor environmental pollution by pesticides: insecticides, herbicides and fungicides. Test with laboratory analysis. Order your Test

Sources:

The Lancet: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)30566-3/fulltext#tables

EPHA European Public Health Alliance : https://epha.org/coronavirus-threat-greater-for-polluted-cities/

ATMO-France : https://atmo-france.org

Générations Futures :  https://www.generations-futures.fr/actualites/

Reporterre 6 avril 2020 : 

https://reporterre.net/Pendant-le-confinement-les-epandages-de-pesticides-autorises-pres-des-habitations

https://reporterre.net/La-pollution-nous-rend-plus-vulnerables-au-coronavirus