Atrazine Not Banned in the EU
NOT banned in the European Union
It is true that countries in the European Union do not use atrazine. The European Union’s decision not to use atrazine was not science based, but directed by a general groundwater limit for all pesticides of 0.1 Part Per Billion (ppb), regardless of toxicity. However, the product received a favorable safety review from the EU:
“It is expected that the use of atrazine, consistent with good plant protection practice, will not have any harmful effects on human or animal health or any unacceptable effects on the environment.”
The European Union’s decision not to use atrazine was not science based, but directed by a general groundwater limit for all pesticides of 0.1 ppb, regardless of toxicity. In fact, the EU had recommended a health-based drinking water standard for atrazine that was 150 times higher than the EU’s 0.1 ppb arbitrary drinking water limit and five times higher than the US federal limit of 3 ppb atrazine.
Terbuthylazine remains an important herbicide in Europe, especially in corn and grape crops, and received a recent favorable science review during the EU’s re-registration process.
The Australian government’s Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority explained it well in a report:
“It is frequently asserted that atrazine has been banned in the EU. This is an incorrect interpretation of the EC decision. Atrazine has not been assessed and de-registered because of a human health or environmental concern. It is not on any EU ‘banned list” and could theoretically be reregistered in the EU should the product registrant provide all the required data. Terbuthylazine, a herbicide very closely related to atrazine is registered in the EU.”