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21st September 2005
Commenting on the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution's Report on crop-spraying and the health of residents and bystanders, Jim Paice, Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Rural Affairs, said:
“The Government must act on the Royal Commission’s conclusion that current policy on exposure to pesticides is inadequate and take forward the recommendations in this report.
“The research necessary to clarify the extent to which the public is at risk from pesticides must be immediately undertaken so that we can be certain of any impact on the health of those living near sprayed fields and quantify any changes in husbandry practice which may be necessary.
“In the meantime the provisional five metre buffer zone should be brought into force but as the report suggests the Government must allow them to count towards set-aside or be entered into environmental schemes to minimise the financial cost of these changes.
“Protecting public health is paramount, but measures to achieve this must be sensitive to the financial pressures faced by British farmers.”
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