What is it about?

Glyphosate, a dominant corn herbicide, has been scrutinized for linkages with human cancer and monarch butterfly population decline, which has led to policies restricting or banning glyphosate use. However, farmers may use more alternative herbicides in response, thereby causing unexpected consequences. This paper evaluates the social welfare consequences of a hypothetical glyphosate restriction, a tax, given the substitution possibilities.

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Why is it important?

Our findings indicate that a glyphosate tax would result in a welfare loss from reduced food production that far outweighs the monetized human health and environmental welfare gain from restricting glyphosate use.

Perspectives

Writing this article was a great pleasure as it involves lots of interdisciplinary thinking. I hope this article brings new perspectives to the glyphosate debate.

Ziwei Ye
Michigan State University

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This page is a summary of: Environmental and economic concerns surrounding restrictions on glyphosate use in corn, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, April 2021, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2017470118.
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