US environmental agency issues finding that the herbicide is unlikely to cause cancer, months after accidentally posting report online

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has finally issued a report concluding that the controversial herbicide glyphosate is not likely to cause cancer in humans, after accidentally posting it online – and then quickly removing it – back in April.

Existing animal carcinogenicity and genotoxicity studies were ‘remarkably consistent’ and did not demonstrate a clear association between glyphosate exposure and cancer. Further, the agency noted that epidemiological studies showed no link between the herbicide and cancer. However, the EPA concluded that the association between glyphosate exposure and the risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma cannot be determined based on the available data.

In response to the new EPA position statement, the House of Representatives’ science, space, and technology committee’s chairman, Republican Lamar Smith, pointed out that the new assessment corroborates the September 2015 findings of the EPA’s cancer assessment review committee. The EPA, despite yet again reaching this same conclusion, still ‘continues to draw out its assessment’ of glyphosate, the congressman said. In May, the United Nations and World Health Organization also jointly concluded that glyphosate is ‘unlikely to pose a carcinogenic risk to humans from exposure through the diet’.