The European Parliament is to establish a special parliamentary committee on EU authorisation procedures for pesticides, and vice president of the Parliament, Mairead McGuinness MEP, has said that scientific research and analysis should be given priority in any examination of such procedures.
"The proposal to establish a special committee on pesticides is a political response to the intense debate in recent months about glyphosate. The renewal of the marketing license by EU Member States for five years, last November, was the focus of much division.
“While debate and discussion is welcome we should be careful to ensure that the EU's regulatory procedures are not unfairly attacked and that adequate attention is given to the scientific evidence and research in this area.
“Some Members are absolutely opposed to the use of glyphosate and other products, while others understand the need for management tools for farmers, including agri-chemicals," said Ms McGuinness.
The special committee will be tasked with assessing: the authorisation procedure for pesticides in the EU; potential failures in how substances are scientifically evaluated and approved; the role of the European Commission in renewing the glyphosate licence; possible conflicts of interest in the approval procedure; and the role of EU agencies, and whether they are adequately staffed and financed to fulfil their obligations.
The establishment of the special committee will be confirmed pending a positive vote when it comes before all MEPs at the February plenary session.
Thirty MEPs will be elected to the special committee, which will have a nine-month term. The committee will deliver a final report of its factual findings and recommendations, which will be subject to a vote by all MEPs at the European Parliament.