French court rejects village mayor’s pesticides ban
3 months ago
Daniel Cueff wants to protect the health of his 600 citizens by banning glyphosate.
A court in Rennes rejected an attempt by a Brittany mayor to ban pesticides being sprayed near his tiny village.
Daniel Cueff became the symbol of the French anti-pesticides movement when he issued a bill in May that banned pesticides, such as the controversial weedkiller glyphosate, within a 150-meter radius of the commune of Langouët. He helped spark a movement that has spread to over 80 communes across France.
Today the court annulled the decree, which it had already suspended in August.
The mayor told AFP he is “obviously disappointed” about the ruling “because it’s a matter of public health.”
“The court’s judgment is so poorly argued that it’s incredible and does not take into account the proof we provided whatsoever,” he said.
Cueff wanted to ban phytosanitary products over fears they would damage the health of Langouët’s inhabitants. He and his lawyer argued that the French government does not do enough to protect its citizens from toxic pesticides.
But the prefect of the department said Cueff’s bill was “marred with incompetence” and that there was “no imminent danger” posed by pesticides. The court ruled that a village mayor cannot introduce pesticides legislation, which is under the remit of the agriculture ministry.
In the summer, President Emmanuel Macron praised Cueff’s “intentions” for tackling glyphosate but stated that the decree did not comply with the law.
Cueff has two months to appeal the court’s decision.