46-year-old DeWayne Johnson has made history by winning USD $78 million in a landmark lawsuit against a transnational company called Monsanto. Johnson sued Monsanto saying they have hidden the risks of the products they sell, specifi¬cally their herbicide (chemicals for killing weeds). Farmers have been concerned about Monsanto’s products for a long time, but Johnson is the first to both take the company to trial and to win.
打贏官司、獲得7,800 萬美金賠償，日前讓46 歲中年男子韋恩‧ 強生寫下訴訟史的新頁。他打官司的對象，是一家叫「孟山都」的跨國企業。強生控告孟山都惡意隱瞞產品風險，尤其點名該公司生產的除草劑（除野草用）有問題。很多農民對孟山都的產品早有疑慮，強生成為跟孟山都對簿公堂並打贏官司的第一人。
Johnson, a father of three children, was diagnosed with ter¬minal cancer in 2014. While working as a groundskeeper, he sprayed hundreds of liters of Monsanto’s herbicides Roundup and Ranger Pro around different schools and sports fields in California. Although he was told these chemicals were “safe enough to drink”, he developed cancer after two years. When Monsanto refused to help him, Johnson decided to take the company to court.
強生是3 個孩子的父親，他在2014 年被確診罹患末期癌症。作為一名除草工人，多年來，他受雇幫加州許多校園和運動場除草，在草地上噴灑了數百公升孟山都的除草劑產品「年年春」（Roundup）和「Ranger Pro」。雖然這些化學藥劑標榜「安全可喝」，但兩年後強生還是被驗出癌症。他找孟山都投訴未果，最後決定將這家企業告上法庭。
Monsanto started out at the turn of the 20th century. They made the artificial sweetener saccharin. Through¬out the 1900s they continued to make chemicals later proved to be very dangerous, such as “Agent Orange”, which was used during warfare, and DDT, which is used to kill insects. Roundup was introduced in the 1970s, and its key ingredient glyphosate has been used in agriculture around the world.
孟山都的事業開始於19、20 世紀之交，以製作糖精起家。至1900 年代結束前，孟山都持續生產後來被證明極度危險的化學藥劑，例如被當作戰爭武器的「橙劑」，以及除蟲劑DDT。1970 年代問世的Roundup 除草劑，其主要成分「草甘膦」，至今仍大量用於農作。
While the company makes many different chemicals, Monsanto also genetically engineers plants. They have developed seeds for crops that won’t die when exposed to glyphosate. These “Roundup Ready” crops, such as soy¬bean, corn and others, were introduced in 1996. Today, Roundup Ready crops account for about 90 percent of the soybeans in the United States.
生產各式化學藥劑的同時，孟山都也用基因工程改造植物。例如開發基改種子，其發芽後的農作物對草甘膦具抗藥性。這些以Roundup Ready 為名行銷的黃豆、玉米等抗草甘膦作物，正式於1996 年推出。現今在美國種植的黃豆中， Roundup Ready 基改黃豆約占9 成。
Roundup is designed to kill plants, but it harms many other creatures as well. According to the National Academy of Sciences, glyphosate hurts honeybees. When the bees visit flowers to collect pollen, the chemical gets into their bodies, weaken¬ing the bees’ ability to fight infections. Bees are one of the most important parts of the global food chain. Without them, pollinating crops and growing food becomes extremely difficult.
Now that you’ve learned about Monsanto, it may seem odd that President Trump has nominated Aurelia Skipwith, a former execu¬tive from Monsanto, to run the Fish and Wildlife Service. Even though the Center for Biological Diversity has said she has no edu¬cation or experience in fisheries and wildlife management, Trump wants Skipwith’s help to reduce the protection of at-risk wildlife and the environment.
對孟山都這家公司有所瞭解後，可能會讓你覺得奇怪的是，美國總統川普竟然提名奧瑞莉雅‧ 史奇普瑞這位孟山都前高層， 出任聯邦機構美國魚類及野生動物管理局局長。即使民間團體生物多樣性中心提出質疑，認為史奇普瑞並無魚類及野生動物管理相關教育背景或工作經驗，川普仍希望透過她的協助，降低對瀕危野生動物及環境的保護。