Stop Pesticide Marche
1st May Ecologist

Manifesto 2023


There can be no health or social justice in a sick environment

All the reports of the Organisations in charged of monitoring the health of our Planet show how dramatic the situation is and declare that one of the necessary and urgent steps to be taken is to change the model of agricultural production.

Defending life and biodiversity

The huge variety of our planet’s plants, animals, fungi and micro-organisms comprise the biodiversity that enables life on Earth. Interrelating with one another, the many species create natural ecosystems that provide us with food, water, shelter and medicines - all vital to our survival. But human presence, actions and activities have altered the balance of natural systems.

2022 saw publication of the latest edition of the Living Planet Report. Its findings as to the health of our biodiversity revealed the loss of about 60% of the world’s population of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles and amphibians since 1970.
Over 1/3 of the world’s land surface and almost 75% of freshwater resources are nowadays being used to produce crops and cattle. 3/4 of the land environment and roughly 60% of the oceans have been significantly impaired. Add to this the climate change that our human activities have brought about, and which is now worsening the impact of many factors on nature and our wellbeing.

Stop pesticides

Millions of people throughout the world are daily exposed to hazards connected with the use of pesticide and weedkiller in agriculture. The use of synthetic chemicals to control “pests” (hence the name pesticide) has flooded the market with hundreds of active principles and formulations dangerous to man’s health, and all without proper study. This has played a major part in triggering chronical diseases such as Parkinson’s and cancer, altering the endocrine system and hence increasing related pathology such as diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, and impaired neurological and sexual development.
People who live and work in areas of intensive agriculture using synthetic chemical products – typical of monoculture – are the most exposed, especially pregnant women
and the unborn, children and the elderly.

In 2022, the Pesticide Atlas was published, showing that the amount of pesticides used worldwide has increased by 80% since 1990. In the long term, pesticides damage agriculture itself, since they weaken the agro-ecosystem and jeopardize the productivity of the land and the quality of crops by destroying the animal and vegetable biodiversity. They pollute the air, the land and the aquifers, which places the survival of many animal species at risk (for instance, pollinators, earthworms and insects). Intensive monoculture based on chemicals gradually impoverishes that precious resource, the countryside.

Let's change agriculture

As an alternative to the present conventional agricultural model we of the Network support agricultural practices like organic and biodynamic agriculture and short supply chains. In the last few years such methods have proved able to ensure respect for public health and the environment, while producing wholesome food, boosting employment, enhancing the variety of local produce, restoring biodiversity in the ground and water, fostering resilience and offsetting climate change, and thus protecting the health and wellbeing of our children and every living species.


TO APPLY The Precautionary Principle and ban the use of dangerous pesticides, meaning synthetic molecules and also formulations (which may be more dangerous, their composition often shrouded in industrial secret); to set up controls and appropriate penalties applying the principle “The polluter pays”, to ban once and for all non-compliant substances enjoying a waiver, and to set targets for reducing all others.

STRENGTHEN land surveillance and control to prevent and stop land clearing, deforestation, landscape defacement, illegal dumping and changes of use.

BAN the use of pesticides in all protected areas and wetland catchment areas of international importance.

TO DEFEND and support Food Sovereignty, to annul incentives for industrial agricultural produce and monoculture; to support and incentivize eco-agriculture (organic and biodynamic) in deference to biodiversity and typical local traditions. We demand that the National Action Plan (PAN) on pesticide use be reviewed, that pesticides be eliminated forthwith from urban areas and where the population congregate.

TO BLOCK the expansion of monocoltures, in particular the vineyards, throughout the territory, be they conventional or organic.

ESTABLISH buffer zones of at least 50 metres from the land being treated with synthetic pesticides, to protect homes, schools, health and sports facilities, land cultivated using organic and biodynamic farming methods, public and private parks and gardens, roads, paths and cycle tracks from drifts.

TO RECONVERT all agricultural productions to organic, for a serious ecological transition.

DE-GLOBALIZATION of production of goods to stop the current global competition, which is a suicide for all species has well a disaster for ecosystems and countries.


1 – Gradual elimination of synthetic pesticides
By 2030 the use of synthetic practices needs to be gradually reduced by 80% in EU agriculture, and banned altogether a few years later. By 2035, the entire agriculture of the Union will have to abandon the use of synthetic pesticides.

2- Measures to restore biodiversity
Natural habitats need to be revived, while agricultural areas need to serve as a vector of restored biodiversity.

3- Support for farmers
Farmers need support during this much-needed transition to eco-agriculture. Small, diversified, sustainable farms require special help and incentives, while research needs support in promoting an agricultural model free from pesticide and GMOs.