Pesticide Action Network (PAN) International launched December 3 as the “Global No Pesticides Use Day” in 1998, to commemorate the world’s worst chemical and industrial disaster in 1984. A Union Carbide pesticide factory in Bhopal(India) exploded and released a lethal gas (methyl isocyanate) that causing more than 500,000 injured and 20,000 deaths in the years since. Cases of chronic illnesses are still mounting among survivors to this day.
PAN International has highlighted the tragedy of Bhopal as an example of a tragic instance of chemical pesticide contamination for which its victims continue to suffer to this day. Bhopal has been called the worst commercial industrial disaster in history - but not the last. Around the world the ongoing manufacture, distribution, and use of chemical pesticides continues to wreak devastating impacts on people and the environment. While acute cases of pesticide poisoning are a concern, the chronic long-term effects such as cancers; and endocrine disrupting effects are of increasing concern.