Bayer’s request to have the Supreme Court dismiss the numerous lawsuits alleging that its Roundup weedkiller causes cancer was denied.
Washington, D.C. Bayer’s request to have the Supreme Court dismiss the numerous lawsuits alleging that its Roundup weedkiller causes cancer was denied.
The judges on Tuesday upheld a $25 million verdict in Edwin Hardeman’s favor. The California resident claims he got cancer as a result of using Roundup for years to combat weeds, poison oak, and overgrowth on his property in the San Francisco Bay Area. Thousands of identical lawsuits had been modeled after Hardeman’s.
The high court’s decision follows a string of court battles against Roundup that have taken various turns.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s conclusion from 2020 that glyphosate does not represent a major health risk and is “not likely” to cause cancer in people was overturned on Friday by a panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The appeal court mandated that the EPA review its conclusion.
In parallel, Bayer has prevailed in four straight trials in state court against persons who alleged that using Roundup caused their cancer. The most recent decision in the company’s favor was made last week in Oregon.
Bayer has maintained that cases based on representations made under state laws should be dropped because federal authorities have consistently found its products to be safe.
To address the allegations that the weed-killing component of Roundup, glyphosate, promotes the cancer non-Hodgins lymphoma, Bayer set aside $4.5 billion last year. For past litigation rounds, the corporation had previously incurred a charge of around $10 billion.
Bayer has cautioned that approving these claims would harm innovation in the food, medical, and other industries.
When Bayer acquired Monsanto in 2018, it received Roundup and legal issues.
There is “no evidence that glyphosate causes cancer in people,” the EPA states on its website. However, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer designated glyphosate as “possibly carcinogenic to humans” in 2015. The agency claimed it was based on “minimal” human cancer evidence and “adequate” animal study evidence.
The high court was advised not to get involved by the Justice Department, which had supported Bayer in lower courts during the Trump administration.
Bayer insists that the product is secure, but said that starting in 2023, it would take the place of glyphosate in Roundup for residential usage. Glyphosate-containing goods will remain accessible for use in industry and agriculture.
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