Friday, February 13, 2009
Poll reinforces desire for ban on cosmetic pesticides...And More
Poll reinforces desire for ban on cosmetic pesticides
by Benjamin Shingler
FREDERICTON - A large majority of New Brunswick residents favour a banon cosmetic pesticides, according to a new Ipsos Reid poll.
Moncton-East Liberal MLA Chris Collins, a longtime advocate forprohibitions on cosmetic pesticides, says the poll results are "notsurprising," based on previous consultations with New Brunswickers.
Collins said Environment Minister Roland Haché will introducelegislation in the spring that would ban cosmetic pesticides acrossthe province. But he said it would likely still allow for pesticideuse for golf courses, agriculture, and forestry.
Complete details of the new poll will be released at a news conferencenext week.
A December report released by the government also showed that NewBrunswickers overwhelmingly favoured a province-wide ban on cosmeticpesticides.
In the December report, about 1,500 New Brunswickers were surveyed fortheir opinion on four proposed courses of action: continued emphasison education and voluntary reduction; targeted regulatory changes; anew province-wide prohibition; and a role for municipal governments.
The report stated that "respondents referenced literature and researchsuggesting links between pesticide use and exposure to negative healthand environmental effects."
The province-wide ban was preferred by as many respondents as all theother options combined.
While respondents were generally supportive of a province-wide ban,they pointed to some potential difficulties. For example, respondentsnoted the ease with which consumers could obtain the banned chemicalsthrough cross-border shopping.
For years, the Canadian Cancer Society has called for bans ofpesticides for cosmetic use, primarily the chemicals aimed at riddinglawns and gardens of insects and weeds.
Ontario recently joined Quebec in doing just that. More than 80ingredients and 300 pesticide products will be prohibited once the banis fully implemented in Ontario in the spring.
The province will only allow pesticides to be used in farming,forestry or for health and safety reasons, such as controllingmosquitoes that can carry diseases such as the West Nile virus.
- with files from Canadaeast News Service
Thursday, February 12, 2009
MOE--Ontario Pesticide Ban coming no matter what!
Just got off the phone with James Scott with the IntegratedEnvironmental Planning Division of the Ministry of the Environment.
That's a fancy dept. that is trying to implement the policies for thenew Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Act in Ontario.
We had a good conversation regarding the lack of transparency andcommunication from the M.O.E., and I was able to offer him some of myperspective as a younger, environmentally aware lawncare operator. Heseemed sympathetic to the plight of the smaller business owners thathad potential to lose their livelihood. He also mentioned that theM.O.E. was budgeting to hire more pesticide enforcement staff to dealwith the upcoming Ontario-wide ban.
In short, this ban is coming for spring '09, no matter what. He can'tgive any details, but has put me on an email list to contact when thenewest changes are sent in to be ratified with the gov. in the nextfew weeks.Posted by Dave McMurray
* DAVE'S MUSKOKA LIFE * Professional LawnCare Assoc. Ontario * Wagner Lawn Care- Orillia, Barrie
Deep Roots can be reached at:email@example.comBox 704Bracebridge, ONP1L 1T9phone: 705-646-1903
James ScottPhone: 416-314-4130Fax: 416-314-2976Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgSenior Policy Analyst - INTEGRATED POLICY135 St Clair Ave W, 11th FlrToronto ONM4V1P5
ENVIRONMENT INTEGRATED ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY DIVISIONSTRATEGIC POLICY BRANCH
fyi..The Ontario Association of Cemetery & Funeral Professionals arenow listed under the Ontario Lobbyist registry with representationfrom StrategyCorp Inc. (John Duffy and Andrew Steele)
Name or Description of Bill or Resolution:Bill 152 - Consumer Protection and Service Modernization Act. Bill 209- An Act to amend the Highway Traffic Act with respect to thesuspension of drivers' licenses. Bill 64 - Cosmetic Pesticides Ban Actand regulations thereof.
Last Amendment Date:Tue Jan 27, 2009
Tue Jan 27, 2009
Section B: Lobbyist and Firm Information
John DuffyStrategyCorp Inc.150 John Street, 10th Floor:Toronto Ontario
Name of Client:Ontario Association of Cemetery & Funeral Professionals27 Legend Court, P.O. Boox 10173Ancaster OntarioL9K 1P3
February 10, 2009
Salmon Arm Observer
City delays pesticide ban plan
City council voted to delay the implementation of the city's cosmeticpesticide bylaw to March 1, 2010 for private lands. Until then,pesticides may be applied only by those with Integrated PestManagement certification.
The ban on the application of pesticides on public lands was notchanged and will come into effect March 1 of this year.
Green Velvet Lawn and Tree Care owner Al Schneider spoke to citycouncil on behalf of his own and other similar businesses operating inSalmon Arm. Schneider said he became aware of the bylaw in earlySeptember through a radio ad. He asked why none of the affectedbusinesses in Salmon Arm were contacted.
Schneider pointed out his copy of the bylaw listed a Jan. 1, 2010start date for the bylaw affecting pesticide use on private lands. Thestart date was amended to March 1, 2009 at a Nov. 10, 2008 councilmeeting. Schneider said if the ban comes into effect March 1, it willresult in financial and job losses in his company and companies likehis.
Schneider said similar bylaws in Kelowna and Kamloops exemptIntegrated Pest Management (IPM) certified applicators from the ban.He noted that without funds to enforce the bylaw, professionals aretaken out of the equation.
“Let the trained professionals do their jobs.”
Schneider said using the alternative substances corn gluten andascetic acid takes three or four applications to quell weeds insteadof a single application with a pesticide. He said the pesticide 2,4-Dwas approved by Health Canada as a substance that does not pose ahealth risk if used according to label directions. Weedkiller 2,4-D isa commonly used pesticide in Canada.
“Where is the scientific evidence that disproves the science of HealthCanada?”
Coun. Debbie Cannon made a motion to amend the implementation date forprivate lands to March 1, 2010 for applicators with an IPMcertification. She said Schneider felt the process didn’t work wellwith his business because he had already notified his customers of theoriginal Jan. 1, 2010 implementation date.
“I understood he would be fine if he had one more year.”
Cannon pointed out Schneider’s business cares for fruit trees, whicharen’t included under the ban. She said she contacted different peoplein the industry to be part of the bylaw committee, which also includedtwo people with IPM certification.
“The fact is that if we’re spraying, it does affect our children. Theresidue of pesticides does end up in our homes, and our water.”
Coun. Kevin Flynn asked if the city would be creating a bigger problemby restricting IPM-certified applicators, but not having enforcementmeasures to prevent homeowners from using pesticides.
Coun. Chad Eliason said he understands the concerns of applicators. Hepointed out that extending the deadline would allow certifiedpesticide applicators to develop best practices. Eliason said if aprovince-wide ban on pesticides goes through, people will be callingthose applicators who can remove weeds in a natural way.
Coun. Alan Harrison said he thought the amendment was reasonable, butnoted the majority of residents in Salmon Arm are not in favour ofpesticides.
“I think that’s the message that this bylaw gives.”
Harrison said council has heard from doctors and families, all who seecosmetic pesticides as unhealthy and unnecessary.
Coun. Ken Jamieson said councillors may have overstepped themselves intheir zeal to get a bylaw in place sooner than they were able to backit up with enforcement. He said he supported the amendment, but inMarch of 2010, council has to make sure the bylaw is fullyimplemented.
“I don’t want this stuff used in Salmon Arm. I don’t like it.”
Council voted unanimously in favour of the amendment to the bylaw,altering the implementation date to March 1, 2010 for private lands.
February 03, 2009
Salmon Arm Observer
Nothing left to consider
Salmon Arm's bylaw banning the use of cosmetic pesticides has been inthe works in some form for about two years now. Opponents of thecosmetic use of pesticides have been lobbying city officials for muchlonger. This newspaper, for instance, ran an in-depth report onpesticide use back in 2004, when physicians were voicing concernsabout the links between pesticides and cancer. Up until the lastcouncil, and the current one, the requests to look into a ban havefallen on deaf ears.
City council passed a bylaw on Oct. 27, 2008. It had the wrongimplementation date on it – March of 2010 instead of March 2009 – soit was corrected and passed on Nov. 10, 2008. It prohibits private andpublic land owners from using pesticides for cosmetic use, with someexceptions such as golf courses. That means the city as well ashomeowners would no longer be able to use pesticides to killdandelions and other unwanted weeds.
The bylaw's implementation followed a year of education, whereby thecity used various methods to inform the public of the upcoming rulesand told them of alternatives to using pesticides. There were radioand newspaper announcements, mail-outs, pamphlets in tax bills, andbooths at public events such as the Salmon Arm Fall Fair, Wednesday onthe Wharf and the Twilight Market. So it's a done deal, right?
Apparently not. City council will be hearing a presentation at itsFeb. 9 meeting from lawn-care companies whose principals havecertificates in Integrated Pest Management. The certificates trainthem to use pesticides as a kind of last resort. They would like moretime to prepare for the bylaw. One apparently called city hall duringthe time the incorrect date was on the bylaw so was expecting adeadline of 2010.
City council will be entertaining an amendment to extend theimplementation of the bylaw for private lands until March 1, 2010.That would mean the city would no longer be able to use pesticides onpublic lands after March 1 of this year, but pesticides could still beused on private lands until 2010, as long as they are applied bysomeone with an Integrated Pest Management certificate.
While we understand the city is under pressure, and does not want toput extra strain on companies during difficult economic times, howmuch notice is enough? And why aren't people taking their owninitiative to stop using pesticides instead of being forced?
This current bylaw process began in 2007 when city council received aletter from all the doctors in the community urging city council toimplement a ban. As one doctor quipped, this is probably the firsttime all the doctors have been united on one issue. They feel stronglyabout it. So should everyone else. After all, it's for our health andour children's health. What could be more important?
Wednesday February 11th, 2009
The Fredericton Daily Gleaner
Forestry plan is uninspired, unsustainable
Re: Crown lands management
On Jan. 30, Premier Shawn Graham revealed the provincial government'snew forest management plan.
Although this plan was touted as being a "balanced approach," onlyindustry representatives were smiling.
The new plan will nearly triple the area available for plantations(from the present 10 per cent to 28 per cent). Reputable New Brunswickscientists recommend that plantations not exceed 15 per cent of theland base. This necessarily means that herbicide applications willalso increase almost three-fold.
The new plan will decrease the amount of old forest (currently 45 percent) to 31 per cent, at a time when scientists tell us that 40 percent old forest is the survival threshold for species that depend onold forest habitats.
The new plan will also reduce the area of conservation forest. Thismeans the area of special wildlife habitat zones will be cut by atleast half.
These habitats are critical to supporting wildlife populations.
The status quo management plan was scrapped because it wasunsustainable (as evidenced by the 20-40 per cent reduction inhardwood annual allowable cut coming in 2012) and relied too heavilyon a few narrow markets.
This new plan is little different. There is the same reliance on a fewsoftwood species, the same strangling tenure system, and the refusalto plan for adaptation to climate change.
Demand for certified wood products is growing, but our provincialgovernment chose to allot more public forest to be managed by methodsthat are not certifiable by the Forest Stewardship Council, Canada'slargest forest certification organization.
The plan is neither smart nor sustainable.
Megan de Graaf, MScFForest ecologistConservation Council of New Brunswick
Feb 10, 2009
The Bugle Observer
The idiocy of increasing supply as demand falls
The forest industry has been in decline for some time, market demandfor our wood has slumped and yet we have a new announcement from ourgovernment increasing the industry's ability to cut more trees,convert our mixed forest to tree farms and to deplete another swath ofprotected and conservation areas.
This is all to be done on OUR CROWN LAND. Nothing for small woodlotowners, just another hand out for large industry.
JD Irving is of course pleased and has said so in much of the mediaover the past few days.
"This is good for our company," Irving said.
What a farce, all revenue coming from Crown Land cutting doesn't evenmeet the operational costs of the government department in Frederictonin charge of Crown Land management.
So many public consultations over the past few years, and still thegovernment announces this measure which is counter to the interests ofanyone other than the remaining dinosaur companies we are stuck withwho want to get every last stick to fuel their corporate greedypockets.
The consultations asked what people in New Brunswick wanted from theirCrown land management. Most responded they wanted to see moreprotected areas, more small mills and small wood product industries,more maple syrup operations, more respect for our existing forests,reduce clear cutting and definitely less plantations.
Plantations mean herbicide and pesticide spraying, all running downhill into our water systems, whatever they tell you about it beingSAFE.
Why do we have governments in hand with industry to the exclusion ofthe people?
When will this stop? How can we reverse this trend or we shallcontinue to have one company sucking the lifeblood out of our provinceand our people?
Jean Arnold,Falls Brook Centre,Knowlesville
MarkhamFebruary 12, 2009
Young people embrace green theme
BY KEELY GRASSERA large group of youth gathered at the mall on Saturday.
It wasn't what you're thinking.
The group, along with representatives from the Town of Markham, cametogether to celebrate the ideas of young people through an awardsceremony for the Quest for the Best contest.
It asked youth to submit their ideas for a sustainable future to thetown.
Mayor Frank Scarpitti said the more than 2,000 submissions received"really speaks to the imagination and creativity of the young peoplein our community".
He pointed out that Markham is ahead of the curve on recycling,forcing developers to build LEED-certified buildings, tree plantingand pesticide bans.
"As good as things are, we know we have to be better. As good asthings are, we know it's not enough," Mr. Scarpitti said.
Special guest speaker was Michael Smith, an account manager for Me toWe, a socially-conscious apparel line that not only supports thecharity Free the Children, but also encourages people to think aboutthe larger repercussions of their actions.
Mr. Smith, who grew up in Thornhill, said that young people areleaders, pointing out that the Quest for the Best contest is a greatexample of that.
He said he thinks all the young leaders at the ceremony realize we aremuch stronger together than we are alone, an idea paramount to Me toWe.
Markville Secondary School students Vino Jeyapalan, 18, Dickson Wong,15, and Anthony Yuen, 16, all attended the ceremony.
Each presented an idea to the town, through their school.
"I think it's pretty cool that the town of Markham is actuallyparticipating in helping the environment," Dickson said.
"I think it's a really great opportunity for students to listen to agreat speaker," Vino added.
Mr. Scarpitti said he's proud of all the people that entered.
Prizes were awarded to the top three entries in both the individualand school categories.
Stephanie Chandrakumar took the top spot in the individual category,winning a bike and a helmet. Diego Santesteban took home a digitalcamera as second prize and Keane Aldrich Go Tan won an iPod as thethird place prize.
Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School, St. Justin Matryr CatholicElementary School and Markville Secondary School won $2,500, $1,000and $500, respectively, to be used to improve the sustainability oftheir schools.
There were also honourable mentions in each category.
Mayor Scarpitti also acknowledged the efforts of Peter Ellman andCourtney McPhaden, two local young musicians who have led an awarenesscampaign about the lack of venues in Markham.
Markville Shopping Centre's centre court acted as a venue, at leastfor that afternoon, for local bands The Diverse Attraction and TheFitzpatrick Incident, which performed as part of the ceremony.
Here are excerpts from the top three individual entries in the Questfor the Best contest.
It would be nice to see a few changes in Markham that will make it thenumber one spot to live in, work go to and school at. To do this,Markham needs to receive as much input from different ideas and I canmake a different by giving ideas on how to make Markham become agreener community and even better.
I think that everyone should think green, by growing trees. Theresidents of Markham should all grow trees and they can do this on theday that the mayor of Markham chooses for this event. The mayor couldalso choose a designated area, a nice land, and hold a tree plantingcampaign on this site. This could later be developed as a recreationalpark for the people of Markham. We need to encourage our wild life,like deer and rabbits and also the birds and butterflies ... This way,we school children can also learn about our fauna and flora. It wouldbe nice for the people of Markham to enjoy camping or have picnics inmany designated areas.
- Stephanie Chandrakumar, Saint Vincent Du Paul Catholic ElementarySchool
The only way to stimulate the younger generation is to provide themwith opportunities and challenge. A leadership center is the perfectway to accomplish this. What is a leadership center, exactly? It isbuilding that carries out leadership conferences and opportunities foradolescents. It allows them to take charge and show initiative, andencourages them to pursue their aspirations ... The leadership centeris not much of a center at all - it is more of a hub. It encompassesall that the Markham community is searching for. Teenagers can startclubs that will work towards a green environment, run programs thatwill create jobs, go to schools to promote multiculturalism, or evenstart a neighbourhood watch program to increase public safety. What Ihave presented to you is not just a single idea, but one that willspawn many others. All you need to do is plant the seed and watch itgrow.
- Keane Aldrich Go Tan, Markham District High School
Imagine a town where life was based around walking instead of driving.The town would be divided into groups of condominiums, each with acommunity center, schools and a commercial area in the center. Insteadof driving around, LRT lines would link the boroughs with each otherand the rest of the GTA. Instead of a supermarket, each group ofbuilding(s) would have a general store on its main floor. Instead ofhaving stones of the roof of a building, there would be parks, trees,playgrounds, windmills, and solar panels. Rather than making peoplewalk outside in the cold, there would be bridges and tunnels linkingthe buildings in the boroughs. Instead of having suburban houses, one-storey complexes and vast parking lots in the spaces between boroughs,there would be forests, complete with bike and pedestrian paths, andpicnic tables, benches, plaques and other such things to encourageawareness of the living world around us.
- Diego Santesteban, Thornhill Secondary School
Utah Eliminates State Organic Certification Program
(Beyond Pesticides, February 13, 2009) The Utah Department ofAgriculture and Food (UDAF) has ended its organic certificationprogram, which was established in 2000, two years before federalorganic standards. The state’s effort to save itself an unknown amountin its budget will force organic farmers to pay significantly more forout-of-state certification. Larry Lewis, UDAF spokesman, said therewas not enough time after Governor Jon Huntsman called for spendingcuts to determine how to run the program profitably.
As of January 29, UDAF’s website carried a message from Clair Allen,director of UDAF’s Plant Industry department, saying, “The UtahDepartment of Agriculture and Food’s Organic Certification Program isin a state of flux at this time. Its future is dependent on action bythe Utah Legislature as they consider which programs to continuefunding during out economic downturn. Please do not download or sendin documents relating to our Organic Certification Program until theissue is resolved. We expect to have this issue resolved by the end ofthe 2009 Legislative Session.”
Since the shuttering of the program, organic farmers have had to payup to 10 times as much for private certification, often fromCalifornia. UDAF typically charged between $50 and $2,500, and thetenfold difference is making a significant difference in farmers’budgets. Mr. Allen showed little sympathy for affected growers,saying, “If all farmers went back to organic farming, we’d be starvingby now, and that’s the reality. As far as organic certification isconcerned, I’d rather cut programs than people.”
The loss of the organic certification program also ends the state’slaw enforcement of its organic standards, which insured the integrityof UDAF certified products. “Utah’s program is a complete package,”said Miles McEnvoy, president of the National Association of StateOrganic Programs. “The difference with Utah’s program and that ofother states is that only Utah has the authority to enforce nationalorganic standards, providing more oversight to protect the integrityof the organic product.”
These developments may be a sign of the times at UDAF. Last year, itproposed making it illegal to list milk as free from artificialhormones, which was backed by rbST-manufacturer, Monsanto. Consumerinput to UDAF is important in preserving policies and programs thatprotect human health and the environment. To comment, contact LarryLewis, Utah Agriculture Department, at email@example.com, or writeMr. Lewis at 350 N. Redwood Road, Salt Lake City, UT, 84114. You canalso contact your state representatives and senators.
Source: Salt Lake Tribune
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