The use of glyphosate-based weedkillers in all general maintenance of our parks, open spaces and hedgerows will come to an end from 1 April 2021.

The use of herbicides has a significant impact on the environment by removing plants that are an important source of food for a variety of native insects. This move supports the commitments to protect our environment in the climate emergency declaration we agreed in 2019.

The use of glyphosate for routine weed management is now banned across all our parks and open spaces, play parks, around West Mersea beach huts, closed churchyards, as well as the highway verges we look after.

An exception will be made for the treatment of some invasive species such as Japanese Knotweed and Giant Hogweed, which are a serious threat to biodiversity. With these invasive species, the chemical is ‘safely’ injected into the plant, says the Council. Albeit, this was early in 2021 before the news that Japanese Knotweed can be dealt with by non-chemical means through Thermo-Electrical treatment and is available from the Japanese Knotweed Agency

Japanese Knotweed Agency would like to ask the Council to qualify how Glyphosate can be injected ‘safely’ into Japanese Knotweed? The extensive root system spreads far and wide, and injecting Glyphosate weed killer into Knotweed requires it to be injected in most stems, which then allows the Glyphosate to run through the weed and roots and ultimately end up far and wide within the soil and can stay there for years. Who knows the effects down the line, and when it rains, where does the Glyphosate travel to? Asks Alan Hoey, Managing Director of the Japanese Knotweed Agency.

These changes are being made to encourage greater biodiversity in our green spaces. Part of this work includes changes to the grass cutting regime in areas around Castle Park to create wildflower verges. These steps all benefit pollinators and other insects, which are hugely important to our eco-system, including the regulation of the natural environment and the food system.

Colchester’s Climate Emergency Response

  • July 2019 – Climate Emergency Declared
  • September 2019 – 57% less chewing gum on town centre streets
  • October 2019 – Joint top climate friendly area in East of England
  • October 2019 – Clean Air for Colchester survey with residents, schools and businesses
  • November 2019 – Commit to end the use of glyphosate weed killer
  • January 2020 – 40% reduction in carbon emissions
  • January 2020 – Climate Emergency Action Plan published
  • February 2020 – 10,000+ trees given out
  • February 2020 – Phasing out of plastics in Council operations
  • March 2020 – 4,486 trees planted in 19/20 for the Woodland Project
  • May 2020 – Received funding for 25 electric cargo bikes
  • June 2020 – Colchester Orbital maps produced
  • April 2021 – Stopped using glyphosate-based weed killers in general maintenance


Japanese Knotweed Agency is the first and currently only entity that offers a non-chemical Thermo-Electrical treatment against Japanese Knotweed.

Delivering up to 5000 volts directly to the weed stalks and crowns, sends a massive destructive shock throughout the weed effectively boiling it in situ and it should decompose and leave no trace. It may take several treatments as would chemical treatment, but with thermo-electrical treatment, the ground is left 100% safe and chemical free. Treatment does not affect the ground or land or other foliage next to the treated weed.

Japanese Knotweed Agency will now offer this service across England and Wales throughout 2023 and beyond.

Treatment of weeds such as Japanese Knotweed can now be done safely, and without the use of Glyphosates, protecting our environments and the health of children and adults and wildlife, and is a massive step forward that has been needed for decades in line with Europe.



Read more about the Japanese Knotweed Agency and their Thermo-Electric eradication on our website:

Or call us freephone 03335 777 888