On Wednesday, Bayer struck a $2 billion deal with opposing counsel to resolve any future legal claims that Roundup causes cancer.
The campaign against glyphosate and Roundup has been around for many years now. Bayer has proved through decades of studies, and with similar research by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, that Roundup and glyphosate are safe for humans to use. However, during this trial, activists did an effective job of convincing the public that Roundup was capable of causing cancer. (For the record, there’s no scientific research to backup that conclusion.)
The filing of a motion for preliminary approval on Wednesday began the review process by the court. “In structuring the plan, the parties have worked diligently to address questions previously raised by the court,” Bayer said in a news release.
Last year, Bayer decided to settle any active legislation against them. According to a company news release, “Plaintiffs’ class counsel are filing a motion for preliminary approval of the class agreement with Judge Vince Chhabria of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, who presides over the Monsanto Roundup multi-district litigation. As part of the agreement, the company would be committed to pay up to $2 billion, provision for which was made and disclosed last year, to support the claims and programs covered by the class plan.”
Qualifying class members over the next four years will be eligible for levels of compensatory awards based on guidelines set forth in the agreement. The company plans for this class plan to be a part of a “holistic solution designed to provide further closure to the Monsanto Roundup litigation.”
Elements of the plan also includes:
- establishment of a fund to compensate qualified claimants during an initial four year program
- an advisory science panel whose findings would not be preclusive but can be used as evidence in potential future litigation involving class members
- a robust notice program.
- research and diagnostic programs that were part of the original class agreement
The company will continue their transparency by seeking permission from the EPA to add a reference link on the labels for its glyphosate-based products that will provide consumers with access to scientific studies.
You can read the full class plan agreement here.