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Burbank City Council to discuss use of Roundup in the community

A grassroots group is planning to attend a Burbank City Council meeting on Tuesday to urge council members to stop the use of the herbicide Roundup, which contains a chemical recently placed on the Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects or reproductive problems.

At the meeting, the City Council plans to hear a report from city staff about the use of Roundup, which contains the chemical glyphosate and has been used for several years by a few city departments.

According to a city staff report, the Parks and Recreation Department has been using the chemical to control weeds in city parks. Meanwhile, the Public Works Department uses Roundup to kill weeds in alleys, streets and medians.

However, a group called Non Toxic Burbank is hoping to convince council members to stop the departments from using the glyphosate-containing product, which some have said can cause non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

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This past Friday, the state Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment added glyphosate to its list of about 900 chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or other medical problems.

Businesses are required to warn customers about the dangers of significant exposure to products containing these chemicals. Some of the chemicals include asbestos, carbon monoxide, tobacco smoke and gasoline.

In March, Non Toxic Burbank successfully persuaded the Burbank Unified School District to stop using Roundup at its facilities.

Leigh Ann Kato, a Burbank resident and group member, said in an email on Friday that she and other members of the organization are hoping to make Burbank the first city in Los Angeles County to stop using Roundup and switch over to a more organic-based weed-management product.

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“We’re well-researched on this topic, and we’re not just a bunch of moms who are freaking out because it’s a chemical,” Kato said. “We understand that there are a lot of chemicals out there — some of them are safe and some of them are not. This one, in particular, is tied to so many health concerns. At this point, we’re not going to stop until it’s out of our community.”

anthonyclark.carpio@latimes.com

Twitter: @acocarpio


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