The damage, however, does not stop there. Crops of tomatoes, watermelons, cantaloupes, pumpkins, and grapes have also been harmed by drifting and volatile dicamba herbicide.(2)
Weitz & Luxenberg Taking on Monsanto in Dicamba Lawsuits
Complaints against the toxic, volatile herbicide dicamba are on the rise. If you are a farmer whose crops have been damaged by dicamba, you know firsthand how harmful this drifting, volatile dicamba can be.
Already, our dicamba attorneys have been hard at work investigating numerous complaints from farmers involving the weed killer dicamba. Millions of acres have been damaged.
If your crops have been harmed by dicamba, we encourage you to contact Weitz & Luxenberg immediately. You may be eligible to pursue compensation for your losses.
We are a national firm with more than 30 years of experience and we handle complex environmental lawsuits. For the past two years, we have been battling Monsanto on behalf of clients who were harmed by the herbicide Roundup. We also recently partnered with other firms to stand up to BP for the Deepwater Horizon Gulf Coast oil catastrophe of 2010, helping to reach a settlement of $20 billion on behalf of victims.
Responding to Environmental Damage Across the U.S.
With offices across the United States, Weitz & Luxenberg has earned a reputation of responding to environmental catastrophes across the country, wherever they occur, at a moment’s notice.
Whether the crisis involves contaminated drinking water, hazardous waste products, toxic air emissions, or oil spill disasters, Weitz & Luxenberg attorneys are ready. Our attorneys have the knowledge, experience, and fortitude to stand up against Monsanto, BASF, DuPont, and other large-scale industries and manufacturers.
We are also speaking with owners of wineries and other businesses who had their crops and buildings destroyed during the California wildfires. In this case, it looks like the power company Pacific Gas & Electric is responsible.
Lawsuits Filed Due to Dicamba Causing Crop Damage
In the case of dicamba, we realize livelihoods are at stake. Dicamba damage to crops could cost farmers millions of dollars.
If you have been affected by dicamba, we urge you to call us now at (844) 212-9658 for a free consultation.
Our knowledgeable dicamba attorneys can evaluate your situation and advise you of your legal options.
We are currently accepting cases from farmers whose crops have been damaged by dicamba, a volatile and drifting herbicide. Even the smallest amount of dicamba can destroy crops that are not genetically modified to withstand this weed killer.
As the number of complaints continue to mount, we expect to file numerous dicamba lawsuits on behalf of farmers whose crops have been affected. Specifically, we are taking cases in which farmers have noticed any of the following types of dicamba damage to their crops:
- Leaf elongation
Farmers are discovering dicamba damage to their crops even though they did not apply this herbicide to their own crops. Rather, a neighboring farmer may have applied dicamba to his dicamba-resistant crops. That “neighbor” could be sometimes miles away or even across state lines.
What Is Dicamba?
Dicamba is a “selective” herbicide, or weed killer. You can find dicamba in more than 1,100 products sold across the United States.(3)
“Products containing dicamba may be liquids, dusts or granules.” Sometimes the products are concentrates, and sometimes they are ready to use.(4)
Dicamba acts “like natural plant hormones known as auxins.” Auxins help “control plant growth.”(5)
Farmers can use dicamba on both woody weeds and broadleaf weeds. When farmers apply dicamba to weeds, “they grow in abnormal and uncontrollable ways.” Then, often, the weeds die.(6)
Problems with Dicamba
One of the major problems with dicamba, a weed killer, is that it does not stay where you put it. Dicamba can drift, sometimes miles from where it was applied.(7)
Prior to the 2017 growing season, farmers were not allowed to use dicamba on growing plants. They could use it before planting their seeds or after harvesting their crops.(8)
In 2016, that changed. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) allowed “new dicamba formulations” to be applied “over-the-top.” These new formulations of dicamba may be used on growing plants.(9)
Some farmers may be enjoying their weed-free crops, thanks to these new dicamba formulations. But there’s a catch: they had to plant genetically engineered dicamba-resistant seeds.(10)
Must Use Genetically Modified Seeds to Avoid Dicamba Drift
Farmers who did not use Monsanto’s genetically modified seeds are suffering serious consequences. Their crops are not resistant to dicamba, and their crops are languishing.
In the heat and humidity, dicamba is particularly volatile. Dicamba “tends to evaporate from the soil or vegetation where it has been sprayed, creating a cloud of plant-killing vapor that can spread in unpredictable directions.” Heat and humidity make the drifting and volatility even worse.(11) (12)
Even though Monsanto claims its newer versions of the weed killer have “low volatility,” and are less likely to become airborne, dicamba is becoming airborne. Dicamba has spread miles in some cases.(13)
In addition, according to NPR, researchers have noted that a lot of the dicamba damage they have seen has not appeared “to come from ‘physical drift’ of windblown droplets of dicamba.” Instead, they have seen hundreds of acres of soybean crops damaged by “what they had feared all along: volatilization.”(14)
When this dicamba vapor lands on crops that are not dicamba-resistant, the result is devastating. Millions of acres of crops have been damaged.(15)
So far, farmers in more than two dozen states have filed complaints. The damage is so severe that in July 2017 Missouri and Arkansas introduced short-term bans on the weed killer.(16)
And, according to The New York Times, “So much dicamba is being used that even a small percentage of drift can cause widespread damage.”(17)
Another Problem with Dicamba: Monsanto’s Seeds
The drifting, volatile weed killer dicamba and its desiccation of millions of acres of crops is bad enough. If you add in the role Monsanto plays, the problem becomes even greater.
Monsanto not only makes weed killers containing dicamba, the company has engineered the seeds that are resistant to it. According to Reuters, “Monsanto is banking on [its] weed killers using … dicamba – and [its] seeds engineered to resist it – to dominate soybean production in the United States.”(18)
Thanks in part to its dicamba-resistant soybean seeds, “Monsanto’s net sales increased $1.1 billion, or 8 percent, in fiscal year 2017.” In fact, according to Reuters, “The company aims for its dicamba-resistant seeds to account for half the U.S. soybeans planted by 2019.”(19)
For farmers “who have not bought the expensive new seeds,” this news does not sit well. The concern is that they will either have to buy the new dicamba-resistant seeds or risk losing their livelihood altogether.(20)
To make matters worse, Monsanto has blamed farmers for the problems they have experienced with dicamba. Monsanto’s executives have insisted “the people who sprayed dicamba were just learning how to do it properly and didn’t follow directions.”(21)
In other instances, Monsanto has said, “Farmers or pesticide applicators sprayed dicamba too close to neighboring fields, didn’t clean out their equipment properly or used the wrong nozzles.”(22)
However, researchers have said they have conducted studies in the field and evaluated firsthand the damage to crops. They believe Monsanto misled people about these dicamba formulations. Monsanto’s dicamba products are considerably more volatile than Monsanto led famers to believe, according to the researchers.(23)
EPA Toughens Dicamba Regulations
After millions of crops were damaged by dicamba in 2017, complaints from farmers poured in to local and federal governments. In response, the EPA has toughened its dicamba regulations for 2018.(24)
Dicamba manufacturers are expected to change their product labels. The goal is to minimize potential damage to crops in 2018.(25)
BASF, DuPont, and Monsanto are expected to make the following changes to their product labels for 2018:(26)
- Only certified applicators are allowed to apply the dicamba products and they must be trained appropriately.
- Farmers must keep records regarding how they use the dicamba products.
- Dicamba is allowed to be applied only when wind speed is below 10 mph, rather than 15 mph.
- The EPA will determine what time of day dicamba is allowed to be applied.
- Manufacturers must “add tank clean-out language to prevent cross contamination.”
- Manufacturers must strengthen their warnings regarding dicamba application and use.
“The changes … will allow continued ‘over the top’ use of the herbicide on cotton and soybeans in 34 states.”(27)
Monsanto and BASF “have acknowledged that the new products – while less volatile than the old ones – are still volatile, but have said the situation is more complicated.”(28)
Dicamba Lawsuits Against Monsanto on the Rise
Weitz & Luxenberg is filing lawsuits claiming that the products containing the new formulations of dicamba are defective, either in their design or formulation. Because of these defects, these products with dicamba are not fit or safe for their intended purpose.
When farmers apply Monsanto’s dicamba-containing products, they run the risk of causing serious damage to other farmers’ crops. Several products are being named in the suits and may include XtendiMax, Engenia, and FeXapan.
These products are defective and unsafe because they are volatile and may move off target, landing where they were not applied.
Our lawsuits claim that Monsanto manufactured, promoted, and sold formulations of dicamba knowing they were capable of drifting and becoming volatile. We believe that by its actions, Monsanto acted recklessly and should compensate farmers appropriately.
In addition, our lawsuits plan to hold Monsanto accountable for failing to warn farmers adequately about the dangers of its dicamba-containing products. The instructions for use were also inadequate.
We claim that Monsanto did not test its new dicamba formulations sufficiently. If the company had done comprehensive testing, it would have discovered its dicamba-containing products were potentially highly volatile and dangerous.
In addition, our suits allege that Monsanto misrepresented its dicamba-containing products, which is fraud. We believe that Monsanto was more interested in selling its products and making a profit than in promoting its dicamba-containing products honestly and responsibly.
W&L Dicamba Attorneys Are Here for You
Weitz & Luxenberg dicamba attorneys have experience standing up to Monsanto, BASF, and DuPont. Since 2015, our dicamba attorneys have filed lawsuits against other toxic Monsanto products, including damage due to the weed killer Roundup.
Roundup contains the hazardous chemical glyphosate, which is a potential carcinogen. What this means is Roundup may be linked to cancer. Monsanto is now facing numerous charges claiming Roundup has led to serious illnesses.
We have the experience and knowledge to file dicamba lawsuits on behalf of farmers across the country. Whether you live in the Midwest, the South, or the Great Plains, our attorneys are prepared to assist you.
Robin Greenwald Leads the Attack on Monsanto
Weitz & Luxenberg is fortunate to count Robin Greenwald among our experienced environmental attorneys. She is one of our distinguished of counsel lawyers.
Ms. Greenwald heads the firm’s Environmental, Toxic Torts, and Consumer Protection Litigation group. In recent years, she helped lead the legal fight against BP in response to the devastating oil spill. She played a key role in helping secure full compensation for thousands of victims of that Gulf oil spill.
Ms. Greenwald also helped lead large-scale legal action against more than 50 petroleum companies. These companies contaminated the nation’s groundwater with MTBE (methyl tertiary butyl ether), a gasoline additive.
With Ms. Greenwald heading the Weitz & Luxenberg team, we achieved a landmark settlement. Some of the nation’s largest oil companies agreed to pay $423 million. These companies had contaminated more than 150 public water systems across the country.
Currently, our attorneys also are responding to toxic groundwater crises in the Northeast and air pollution hazards in the Northwest. We are also standing up for victims in Flint, Michigan, whose drinking water was contaminated with lead.
If your crops were damaged by the drifting, volatile herbicide dicamba, you may be entitled to compensation. We encourage you to contact Weitz & Luxenberg for a free consultation.
You may phone us at (844) 212-9658 or fill out the form on this web page. One of our representatives will be in touch with you shortly.