Kootenay News Advertiser
Invermere will be pesticide-free
by Kerstin Renner.
The District of Invermere is soon going to be a lot tougher on harmful
chemicals found in various pesticides. The municipality is the first
community in the East Kootenay to adopt a cosmetic pesticide bylaw,
banning the use of these substances for cosmetic purposes in
Mayor Gerry Taft says the message this bylaw sends is that there is a
high level of commitment on behalf of the municipality and support for
this cause that started at the grassroots level. At the same time, he
emphasizes, residents do not have to be afraid that the change is
going to be drastic and costly for them.
"The intent of the bylaw is not to be heavy-handed and handing out
fines to people," Taft states. Instead, the district will be
continuing an education program showing alternatives to harmful
chemicals. In this, the district has been working with the Pesticide
Free Columbia Valley Coalition and other groups since the spring of
Actual enforcement of the bylaw will be handled on a basis of
complaints coming in from neighbours and residents. Taft emphasizes
that even then, council's desire in the first years will be to hand
out warnings and give more education to the person violating the
Taft thinks the bylaw makes sense from both an environmental point of
view as well as a public safety and health point of view. The step to
create a bylaw was taken due to the fact that research by the Canadian
Cancer Society shows that communities that passed a by-law and
supported it with education successful in reducing the use of
pesticides by a high degree. Patti Moore, community action coordinator
with the East Kootenay branch, says education and outreach programs
alone, while more popular than by-laws, are far less effective with
only a low reduction (10 to 24 per cent) in pesticide use to date in
the communities looked at in the study. Invermere joins 151 other
Canadian municipalities as well as the provinces of Quebec and Ontario
that have passed legislation to ban cosmetic pesticides.
Moore adds that further research by the Cancer Society links the use
of certain chemicals found in pesticides to the development of various
types of cancer and this is why her organization is also asking the
provincial government to legislate a ban of non-essential pesticide
In the end, it comes down to making a choice to reduce the amount of
potentially harmful toxins people are exposed to where this is
possible. "We're hoping to achieve a shift in the ideals of our
community," says Heather Leschied, project manager with Wildsight, "We
want to be a healthy community, both for our citizens as well as the
environment." She feels this is an area where pesticides can be
reduced easily and effectively and replaced by alternative ways that
are less harmful.
Leschied says in the Columbia Valley there is one very specific area
that will likely benefit from the reduction in chemicals being applied
to kill off unwanted weeds or pests on lawns and in gardens. "We want
to protect the greatest asset we have in the Windermere Valley, which
is Lake Windermere," she explains.
The Invermere bylaw specifically forbids the use of pesticides for
cosmetic purposes, meaning the application for the maintenance of
trees, shrubs, plants and turf anywhere outdoors on public and private
land. "There are still examples where pesticides are allowed," the
mayor states, "for instance in a pest-control situation." This
includes pests that could be a threat to public health, invasive weed
control and pesticides used within buildings. There is also a list of
permitted pesticides that do not contain certain harmful chemicals.
The bylaw will take effect May 1 of this year.
Copyright 2009 Kootenay News Advertiser
District of Invermere
Pesticide Use Bylaw #1364, 2008 Adopted February 24, 2009
Mayor - Gerry Taft
Originally elected to Invermere Council at the age of 20, Gerry is now
beginning his second term. Over the last three years Gerry has gone
from working minimum wage jobs and struggling to survive in Invermere,
to now operating a small business and recently purchasing his first
home (and yes, still struggling to survive).
Many of the issues facing Invermere, which have resulted from
continued growth and increased costs of living, are issues that Gerry
can view from several perspectives as a young person, a business
owner, and an involved member of the local government for the last
A strong believer in entrepreneurial approaches, minimizing
bureaucracy, and accepting that issues are never black or white; Gerry
will be chairing the Development Services Committee and serving on the
Corporate Services and Operational Services Committees.
Mayor Gerry Taft
Telephone: 250-341-1202 Cell
March 17, 2009
Pesticide ban is most health protective in North America
RE: "Municipal Exemptions" (March 11)
Thank you for writing about Ontario's new pesticide law -- the most
health-protective legislation of its kind in North America.
Your article contains one misleading claim. You say concern over
pesticides is being expressed by "special interest groups". In fact,
polling shows concern over pesticides is expressed by about 70% of
Ontarians. It is also expressed by Ontario's health authorities
including the Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario, the Ontario
College of Family Physicians, the Ontario Medical Association (Section
on Pediatrics), and the Canadian Cancer Society -- all of which
strongly support the new provincial ban. It would just be silly to
call Ontario's family doctors, pediatricians, nurses, and health
charities "special interests". Their only interest is protecting the
The special interests are those groups opposing the ban.
Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment
March 18, 2009
The Connexion France
Events highlight pesticide dangers
THE fourth “Semaine pour les Alternatives aux Pesticides” (Week for
Alternatives to Pesticides) will see hundreds of events around France
aiming to warn the public of the dangers of such chemicals.
Bodies including local authorities, companies and associations all
over the country are organising events to show the health and
environmental risks linked to the use of pesticides, which the
organisers say are unacceptable.
Organisers say the want to educate the public about viable
alternatives to pesticides and to put to put pressure on decision
France uses the most pesticides in European although the government
has set a target of reducing usage by 50% - by 2018 “if possible.”
Among those taking part are the Association des Jardiniers de France
who are running dozens of workshops on “natural gardening” and the
city council of Paris, which will be explaining how it uses eco-
friendly methods in managing its parks.
Click on the map here to find out what is going on near you, including
visits to organic orchards and gardens, exhibitions, talks, debates
and film shows.
The “week” is from Friday March 20 to Monday March 30.
The event was started by France in 2006, but has also spread abroad,
with events taking place this year in countries including Belgium,
Quebec, three African countries, New Caledonia (a French territory in
the Pacific) and Brazil.
March 17, 2009
David Suzuki: Ontario joins movement to make gardens green
By David Suzuki and Faisal Moola
The discovery by Swiss chemist Paul Mueller in 1939 that DDT kills
insect “pests” was hailed as a breakthrough. Dr. Mueller went on to
win a Nobel Prize in 1948 for his work, and DDT became the most widely
used pesticide in the world during the 1950s. Years later, scientists
learned that DDT is “biomagnified” up the food chain, harming fish,
birds, humans, and other life.
Did we learn from that? The use of chemical pesticides increased by
more than 600 per cent in the last half of the 20th century. Ten years
into the 21st century, we still pour millions of litres of harmful
pesticides onto our food, schoolyards, lawns, and managed forests.
Much of that ends up in our air and water –and us. All Canadians carry
pesticides in their bodies.
But this may be changing. We still use a lot of pesticides, usually
for reasons less important than killing disease-carrying insects. We
spray plenty of toxic chemicals around thinking it will keep lawns and
gardens looking pretty. These pesticides are referred to as “cosmetic
pesticides”. The good news is that Ontario is the latest Canadian
province to recognize that risking human and ecological health for the
negligible benefits provided by cosmetic pesticides is foolish.
Under Ontario’s Cosmetic Pesticides Ban Act, more than 250 pesticides
will be removed from the province’s store shelves by the end of April.
Quebec is the only other province to have banned these pesticides, but
Prince Edward Island has announced plans for a ban, New Brunswick is
considering one, and more than 100 municipalities, including
Vancouver, Halifax, and Brandon, have bans in place.
The Ontario law is something the David Suzuki Foundation, along with a
range of health and environmental organizations, has been pushing for.
It’s recognition that caring for the environment is also about caring
for our health. But there’s more to be done – and the bans that are in
place may be threatened.
To start, the Ontario law does not apply to golf courses, and some
restrictions will not take effect for another two years.
And the chemical industry isn’t sitting back while governments move to
protect their citizens. Dow AgroSciences, a division of U.S.-based Dow
Chemical, has served notice to the Canadian government that it plans
to challenge Quebec’s ban on the herbicide 2,4-D under the North
American Free Trade Agreement. Although Dow argues that 2,4-D has not
been proven unsafe, some research shows that it may pose risks to
human immune, reproductive, and endocrine systems and that it may
increase the risk of cancer. Governments in Denmark, Norway, Sweden,
and Kuwait have banned 2,4-D because of concerns about its effects on
human health and the environment.
Another problem with pesticides is that they don’t discriminate. They
may kill some “pests” but they often kill beneficial plants and
animals as well. So, using pesticides on lawns and gardens is a band-
aid solution, as the key to a healthy lawn or garden is to ensure that
the soils, plants, and beneficial insects and animals are healthy.
Ironically, lawns and gardens that become chemically dependent become
more susceptible to pests and disease over time and are more likely to
suffer from drought and temperature extremes. Today, even in areas
where the cosmetic pesticides aren’t banned, most lawn and garden care
companies will offer organic options. And many stores have voluntarily
pulled harmful pesticides off their shelves.
The bans are a great start, and we hope to see more provinces get on
board. But they must also come with enforcement and education.
Education programs are the best way to show people how easy it is to
have healthy lawns and gardens without using harmful pesticides. These
can be combined with programs to show how to have attractive yards
using less water.
The bans also show that governments will put the interests of citizens
ahead of industrial interests if people speak up. The public has led
the way in getting these unnecessary chemicals off the store shelves
and off our lawns. We’ve seen ample evidence through a contest
launched by my foundation, called David Suzuki Digs My Garden. It
allows participants to share stories, photos, and tips about pesticide-
free gardening. The response has been great. People from every part of
Canada have told us how easy and satisfying it is to grow healthy
gardens without using harmful chemicals.
It truly is a growing movement, and we can only hope that as it
blossoms and blooms, it will lead to even more discussion about the
role of chemicals in the environment.
Take David Suzuki’s Nature Challenge and learn more at www.davidsuzuki.org/.
March 18, 2009
The Gardener's Corner
New pesticide laws take effect in April
By Judith Rogers
Our greatest challenges are yet to come, so we must make informed
On Earth Day this year — which is April 22 — Ontario Regulation 63/09
made under the Pesticides Act, which has been amended by the Cosmetic
Pesticides Ban Act of 2008, will take effect.
What does this mean for homeowners?
There are eleven classes of pesticides which include a listing of all
banned chemicals and products with class five and six having relevance
for homeowners. As before, each class has different regulatory rules
and living animals like ladybugs and nematodes can still be used.
There are exceptions for the use of pesticides in public health and
safety, agriculture, golf courses, forestry, and scientific research.
Health and safety will allow the homeowner to protect their family by
still being able to buy certain pesticides to use in and around the
home. Products for structural damaging insects like carpenter ants and
termites, those to control fleas on pets, manage wasps that sting or
mosquitoes that can transmit West Nile virus are some and the products
can only be used for these explicit purposes.
Glyphosate (Round-up) will be available to use specifically on
poisonous plants like poison ivy or oak, but not on any weeds on the
driveway or elsewhere because they are not considered a health issue.
The retailer will be required to physically hand the purchaser a
letter stating this fact; if the glyphosate is used on anything other
than the poisonous plant, it could result in a fine.
If the homeowner wishes to have a lawn care company apply the
glyphosate, a weed inspector would first have to come to the property
to establish the presence of the poisonous plant. The inspector would
then give the homeowner a letter stating a poisonous plant has been
identified, so they can proceed with having a professional treat it.
Golf courses will be able to treat only the playing surfaces of turf
with approved pesticides, but not their patios, gardens or outdoor
areas. Sports fields have not had pesticides applied, but if the need
should ever arise, permission must come from the Ministry of the
If a banned product is used on trees, it must be done by a
professional and notice has to be given to the occupants of abutting
There will no longer be an exception for single active ingredients
like soap, mineral oil or diatomaceous earth, and these must be
applied by a registered user with the new green sign that will replace
the old red and black warning.
Biopesticides that contain micro-organisms like nematodes or the
bacterial insecticide to control gypsy moths and lower risk pesticides
such as vinegar to control weeds are acceptable, but must be used
according to the label.
If you have pesticides stored that will now be banned, they can be
taken to a local municipal hazardous or special waste collection site
for proper disposal. It is important that nothing be poured down the
drain or in the sewer system, which could become a public health or
For further information, visit the MOE website at www.ontario.ca for a
full listing of banned chemicals and products, but be prepared as
there are many pages for each classification. The Ontario hotline
number is 1-800-565-4923.
Contact Judith with gardening questions at lavendercottage.rogers@gm
March 17, 2009
Vernon Morning Star
Chemical ban considered
By Richard Rolke
Dousing your dandelion-covered lawn with chemicals may come to an end
On March 23, the city’s environmental advisory committee will
recommend that council ban the cosmetic use of pesticides on public
land in 2010 and on private land in 2012.
“We want to do it with public lands first to set an example and see
how it works,” said Coun. Buffy Baumbrough, committee chairwoman.
The committee began looking at the issue after some residents
expressed concern about chemical application for cosmetic purposes.
“How necessary are they if it’s for keeping your lawn free of
dandelions?” said Baumbrough.
“For some people, they believe it causes respiratory issues or rashes.
Some believe the chemicals accumulate in your system and wonder what
the long-term affects are.”
Chemicals would still be used to control noxious weeds or for
agricultural activities, and Baumbrough says there would be an
education campaign to help residents find options to pesticides.
While an individual from a garden centre was involved in the process,
Baumbrough admits there have been no discussions with lawn care
“I’m sure there will be more discussion because it’s such a complex
issue,” she said.
A longtime advocate for banning chemicals on lawns and in parks is
welcoming the recommendation from the environmental advisory
“It’s already in place in 200 communities,” said Kerry Bokenfohr, a
“Study after study shows we need to stop using pesticides.”
Bokenfohr claims that chemical sprays can lead to a variety of health
issues including cancer and neurological.
“Children are most vulnerable because they are the ones playing on
And Vernon isn’t the only one looking at pesticides.
The North Okanagan Regional District is considering instructing staff
to continually look for methods that would reduce herbicide use yet
maintain the integrity of grass in parks.
Staff could also be asked to bring forward a report outlining a turf
management and tree care program that would reduce the use of chemical
March 17, 2009
Vernon Morning Star
Schools scrap chemical use
It’s been more than 15 years in the making but North Okanagan-Shuswap
School District now has rules for weed control.
The integrated pest management policy and regulation states that
pesticides will not be applied for cosmetic purposes.
“It is very good to finally have a district policy,” said Teresa
Hebert, board chairwoman.
Under the initiative, there is a responsibility to control insect
infestations and noxious weeds on school property.
“In so doing, wherever practical and feasible, the board requires that
alternative methods of pest, insect, and noxious weed control be used
rather than through the use of chemicals. Where it is deemed that a
chemical control is necessary, then the least noxious and
environmentally detrimental chemical or organic agent will be used,”
the policy states.
The regulation sets out exceptions (such as the application of
pesticides to get rid of a wasp infestation) and information on such
things as where application is permitted that it be in accordance with
local, provincial and federal legislation, that employees be
certified, that if requested, detailed information on the chemicals
applied be given, and that it be carried out, if possible when
students are not on the school site.
Trustee Michel Saab, a long time advocate for eliminating the use of
pesticides, says the district’s policy committee deserves praise for
“This all started in 1994. We had a meeting because there was concern
about pesticide use,” he said.
“We had a moratorium in our school district but the Armstrong area
schools had different regulation.”
Saab is pleased that the policy recognizes the potential of pesticide-
caused health problems.
March 17, 2009
Invermere Valley Echo
Prevention is the best cure for cancer
A form of the above headline was prominently displayed in a recent
February issue of The Globe and Mail. The article following stated
that while spending dollars on research and on the treatment of cancer
is necessary, a far better strategy for reducing the world’s cancer
cases would be to develop public health policies aimed at preventing
people from getting the disease in the first place. Approximately 1/3
of cancers are preventable if Canadians cut down on high fat, sugary
foods, increased their regular exercise and slimmed down to a
healthier weight. Another third of cancers could be eliminated by
While genetic factors can influence outcomes, studies have shown that
when immigrants from countries with low cancer rates move to countries
with high rates, their cancer numbers rise suggesting that
environmental factors pose a much greater risk of contracting the
disease. And while all this sounds very simple, we need to make it
easier for people to choose healthier lifestyles.
Governments and schools need to develop better public health
strategies to assist in reducing cancer. The British Columbia
government has been very progressive in one area - banning smoking
from public places. Companies that produce processed foods need to
have stricter guidelines to reduce sugars, fats and salt in their
products. Towns and cities need to promote physical activity with more
walking and bicycle paths. Ultimately it is the decision of the
individual to make these choices but if communities can offer
healthier choices, it makes it easier to make the right decision.
Our local schools are doing a good job of promoting healthy eating by
reducing or eliminating junk foods from vending machines and serving
healthier choices in the cafeterias. They are running ‘Quit Smoking’
campaigns aiming to offer support to those trying to quit and to stop
teens from ever starting to smoke. Our local District of Invermere
recently passed a bylaw banning the use of cosmetic pesticides.
The Canadian Cancer Society supports the two-pronged approach that
involves individual action and public policy intervention.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again… risk can be increased or
decreased by the lifestyle choices you make or the kind of environment
you live and work in. Making healthier choices does not guarantee that
you will not get cancer, but it does significantly reduce your
So: eat well, quit smoking, be active, get screened for breast/
prostate cancer, stay at a healthy weight, limit alcohol use, reduce
exposure to UV rays, and follow health and safety instructions when
using hazardous materials at home and at work. It’s your choice.
March 18, 2009
The Tampa Tribune
Do We Need Pesticides, Herbicides?
by MONICA BRANDIES
Many growers think we need pesticides, and the production of these
killers has been big business for decades.
And for those same number of decades, organic growers have insisted we
don't need them.
For many years, the arguments offered by organic growers were
considered ridiculous. But since the book "Silent Spring" was
published by Rachel Carson in 1962, there has been a slow but steady
swing of the pendulum, even by big business - at least a little more
in the direction of natural, poison-free growing.
We still have a long way to go.
In my early gardening days, I had been trained to think pesticides
were essential. My family had a greenhouse where insects reigned, and
we tried everything to control them. We sprayed. We set off smoke
bombs, wearing gas masks and scared our kids to death and backed out
as we lit one after another along the greenhouse aisles.
Once, we had a crack in our glass house, and the neighbors called to
tell us smoke was billowing out.
"Don't worry," we said. "It's just a bomb we set off."
Now, I can't believe we did that.
We never did succeed in controlling the insects with that poison, but
we nearly killed a toddler son at one point.
We escaped the greenhouse and traded it for a small acreage and large
old farmhouse we loved. Then an uncle gave us a subscription to
"Organic Gardening" magazine in 1966.
At the time, it seemed pretty far out. Before long, though, I was
convinced organic gardening made sense, and I wrote for that magazine
for many years. I'd rather face any number of bugs I can see - most of
them harmless - than chemical poisons I can't see.
What a relief I felt to abandon the spraying and not feel guilty. By
improving the soil and mulching, we grew better plants that did not
attract the pests, which are nature's way of eliminating the weak and
the stressed. Mulch helps immensely with weed control, improves soil
and saves moisture.
We learned to choose the most disease-resistant cultivars for our
garden. You can grow beautiful roses and spray every week, or grow
heirloom and disease-resistant roses, still quite beautiful, with no
spraying at all.
When we moved to Florida, our next-door neighbor, Bernie, came over
that first night to welcome us.
In the course of the conversation, he said, "You will want to have
your yard and your house sprayed on a regular basis."
We came to love Bernie, but we did not take his advice. My husband,
David, spreads boric acid the kind that comes in large, insect-
repellant packages around the perimeter of the house every March. He
also puts out some bait traps indoors, but only as needed.
In the garden, I use few pesticides - except for mosquito spray, when
there is a threat of some dire disease and the insects are biting
I know many people who use no insecticides or fungicides, only
herbicides as needed on vines, paths and other areas - most of the
RoundUp variety. I have even tried it, but it didn't work for me.
Maybe I didn't use enough, because I still remember the farmers
spraying their fields with weed killers when my family lived in Iowa -
sometimes when there was enough wind to carry the poison smell to our
kitchen and curl the leaves on the grape vines just outside our
kitchen door. I'll take the weeds.
Cleaning plants with a strong spray of water will remove most insects,
eggs and disease spores. If that fails, add insecticidal or dish soap
to the water you spray on the plants.
You can buy and turn loose beneficial insects. For example, lady bugs
eat aphids. And there are safe sprays and dusts, such as Bacillus
thuringiensis, or Bt. Any product containing this that will kill
insects in the worm stage safely. But if you want butterflies, you
don't even want to use soap in the spray, and you don't have to.
More people are growing gardens well without using dangerous
chemicals. Even many Iowa farmers are going organic.
It's another piece of evidence that the world is getting better, not
Heavenly bamboo, Nandina domestica, is an evergreen shrub that grows
all over Florida but tends to be more colorful the further north you
go. It likes partial to full shade but will withstand full sun. Mine
has enjoyed our cold winter and never looked better. It can grow to 8
feet tall and grows small, shiny leaves that turn a coppery red in
winter. The leaves are compound and lacy, medium-green in summer but
with red new growth. White flowers grow in upright clusters and are
not especially showy, but the orange berries hang in beautiful
clusters. The berries are poisonous and perhaps a bit tempting to
children, so warn them. The foliage is good for bouquets. Immerse it
in tepid water for a few hours to make it last longer.
Now's The Time To ...
•Prune like crazy. So far, I have done the roses, hibiscus, plumbago
and duranta for shape and size. I pruned the silver shrimp, Salvia
forsythia, lion's ear, candy corn and bush sunflower drastically to
remove dead growth. I cut the cassia by the front door way back and
pruned the frilly hibiscus it was covering, and also cut dead growth
from the blue gingers and one sad croton.
•My narrow-leaved Mammey croton died back badly in the freeze, but
it's coming back from the roots. The wide-leaved Petra croton had
hardly any damage at all, even in more exposed places, so it is
definitely much more cold-hardy.
•The Suncoast Native Plant Society meets at 7 p.m. today at the
Hillsborough County Extension Office, 5339 County Road 579, Seffner.
Donald Roberts and Robert Fischer will speak about the Coastal
Conservation Association. The meeting is free and open to the public.
Call (813) 317-5497.
•The Tampa African Violet Society will meet at 10 a.m. Friday at the
Sadie Park Recreation Center, 510 East Sadie St., Brandon. Therese
Lynam will present African Violet Growing Basics. There will be a
plant drawing and growing tips. Admission and parking are free.
Contact Mary Lou Harden at (813) 689-8700 or Mina Menish at (813)
•The Horticulture Vocational Program at the Falkenburg Road Jail will
hold a plant sale from 8 a.m. to noon March 27. The program needs
fertilizer, equipment, labels and soil. The jail is at 520 N.
Falkenburg Road, Tampa.
Press Release, March 16, 2009
Coalition against BAYER Dangers (Germany)
Bayer´s Annual Shareholder Meeting: Countermotions Introduced
The Coalition against BAYER Dangers has introduced countermotions to
Bayer´s Annual Stockholders´ Meeting in Duesseldorf/Germany. The
Coalition and several environmental and social justice groups will
discuss the proposals within the meeting on May 12. Main topics will
be bee deaths, new coal plants on Bayer´s sites, hazardous pesticides,
Bayer´s role in the economic crisis and Bayer´s efforts to block
generic drugs. The company published the countermotions on their
website today: www.asm2009.bayer.com/en/
The complete countermotions:
ANNUAL STOCKHOLDERS´ MEETING ON MAY 12, 2009
Countermotion to Item 2: The actions of the members of the Board of
Management are not ratified
Reasoning: The BAYER Group continues to violate the rules of
responsible corporate management. The Board of Management bears
responsibility for this. A selection of the most recent examples:
For more than ten years, beekeepers have been pointing out that
pesticides are a major risk for honeybees. BAYER maintains, however,
that the toxins do not come into contact with the bees at all. In May
2008, there was a catastrophic spate of bees dying in southern
Germany. The BAYER active ingredient clothianidin was detected in all
the examined bees. The license for the product has since been put on
ice in several countries, and in France, clothianidin did not even
make it onto the market because of the risk to honeybees. Despite
this, the BAYER Board of Management refuses to stop selling the
pesticide, which would be the only way to protect the bee population
in the long term (more information: www.cbgnetwork.de/2596.html).
There have been several serious accidents in plastics production at
BAYER over the last few years. BAYER now intends to significantly
expand production of TDI and MDI at its Dormagen and Brunsbuettel
sites. In both cases, phosgene is to be used as an intermediate
product. Phosgene is a deadly respiratory poison that was used in the
First World War as a poison gas.
Both TDI and polycarbonates could be produced without phosgene, and
that would be the only way to reduce the risk to nearby residents and
the workforce. However, BAYER has not developed such processes to the
point where they could be used for production. As the plants have a
service life of up to 35 years, the construction of new ones would
mean that this high-risk method of production would remain with us for
Despite the economic crisis, BAYER intends to raise the dividend. It
is unacceptable that employees should be forced into short-time
working, take compulsory leave and accept wage cuts while the
stockholders make no contribution to overcoming the problems. Paying
out over one billion euros to the shareholders and, at the same time,
allowing 5,500 employees to suffer for the crisis is cynical. The
Board of Management must be forced to throw its purely profit-oriented
policy overboard in favor of an ecological and socially responsible
form of management.
BAYER is suing the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for having
issued a license for the drug Nexavar to the company Cipla. In India,
approval can be granted for generic pharmaceuticals even if the
original substance is still patentprotected. The idea is that
inexpensive substitute products can be launched onto the market
immediately a patent expires. Both Indian laws and the international
TRIPS agreement on the protection of intellectual property provide for
such licenses for generics before a patent expires.
If BAYER won this lawsuit, it would have serious implications
regarding access to inexpensive drugs. It would affect not only Indian
patients but poor people all over the world, because India is one of
the world's largest producers of generics. BAYER evidently wants not
only to extend its own patent rights but also to create a precedent.
This would delay the use of live-saving generics generally and
threaten the lives of thousands of patients (see Health groups: Defend
affordable drug treatment in India).
The BAYER Group continues to participate systematically in illegal
collusion on prices. Recently, BAYER paid a fine of $97.5 million to
the U.S. Department of Justice for the illegal payment of commission
for selling glucose monitoring devices. BAYER had bribed eleven U.S.
distributors of monitoring devices for diabetes patients to offer only
BAYER products. The payments were disguised as advertising expenses.
The Coalition against BAYER Dangers has published a list of cartels
involving BAYER, which can be found at www.cbgnetwork.de/2355.html.
The list, which is inevitably incomplete, contains information on the
payment of fines and the duration of the respective agreements.
Last year, BAYER agreed to cooperate with Cologne University in the
field of pharmaceutical research. Richard Pott from the BAYER Board of
Management was even elected to the Cologne University Council despite
massive resistance by the students. Because BAYER refuses to reveal
the content of the cooperation agreement with Cologne University, the
conditions of this and many similar cooperation agreements remain in
the dark. It is consequently unclear whether pharmacological studies
carried out by Cologne University will in future have to be submitted
to BAYER AG before their publication and whether undesirable results
will be suppressed. The risk is that science will be complete
subordinated to economic interests.
Countermotion to Item 3: The actions of the members of the Supervisory
Board are not ratified
Reasoning: The Supervisory Board does not adequately fulfill its
functions of overseeing the work of the Board of Management, and its
actions should therefore not be ratified. Below are some examples of
the irresponsible corporate policy that is tolerated by the
The BAYER herbicide glufosinate is toxic to reproduction and can cause
deformities in fetuses. The active ingredient belongs to a group of 22
pesticides that must disappear from the market under the new E.U.
pesticide legislation. Despite the proven risk for users and
consumers, however, BAYER refuses to halt the sale of the toxic
substance. At present, in fact, production is even being extended.
The risks emanating from glufosinate must also have consequences for
BAYER's genetic engineering program, which consists almost entirely of
glufosinateresistant seeds. Due to the hazards connected with
glufosinate and also because of contamination of other plants by GM
crops and the unclarified risks for consumers, BAYER must withdraw
glufosinate-resistant seeds from the market. In particular, BAYER must
withdraw its application for an E.U. import permit for genetically
modified rice (New EU pesticide laws: Take Glufosinate off the Market
The journalist Markus Breitscheidel worked incognito as a contract
worker at BAYER SCHERING. He received an hourly gross wage of 6.24
euros. This pittance was embarrassing even for his supervisor, but he
was unable to do anything about it because, he said, production costs
had been put under massive pressure since the takeover by BAYER.
Initially, contract workers were only hired in bottleneck situations,
but they now represent the majority of the people working in the
production plant. Numerous permanently employed staff lost their jobs
and were then re-hired as contract workers at much lower pay rates.
Scared by the negative publicity, BAYER tried to wriggle out of the
affair by making a subsequent higher wage payment to Markus
BAYER continues to be involved in energy policy decisions that will
torpedo climate protection over a period of decades. For example, a
coal-fired power plant is to be built at the Uerdingen site that will
emit 4.4 million metric tons of CO2 a year. It will be operated by
BAYER subsidiary Currenta. New coal-fired power plants are also
planned for Brunsbüttel and Antwerp. They will all run on imported
coal from overseas.
Centralized electricity production in such gigantic power plants
prevents any worthwhile use of the heat generated. More than half the
energy produced in Brunsbüttel and Antwerp would simply be wasted.
With an expected service life of up to 50 years, the new power plants
would prevent a switch to environmentally friendly energy production
for two generations. BAYER is thus nullifying its bold promise to "set
new standards in climate protection" (Stop Climate-Killers: Coal-fired
power plants on Bayer´s sites).
According to a recent study, BAYER markets the largest number of
hazardous pesticides. In the study by Greenpeace, the products from
the five largest agrochemical groups, which account for 75 percent of
the world market, were investigated on the basis of environmental and
health criteria. 46 percent of the 512 pesticides sold by the
companies investigated worldwide pose a particularly serious risk for
man and nature.
BAYER endangers patients through dishonest advertising statements for
pharmaceutical products. In the fall, for example, BAYER received
warnings from the U.S. health authority FDA over its advertising for
two Aspirin combination products. The product "Bayer Heart Advantage"
had been marketed as a drug that enabled the reduction of fat levels
in the blood and consequently lowered the risk of heart disease. The
product "Bayer Woman's" was advertised as combating osteoporosis. No
registration exists for either of these indications.
BAYER's aim with its Aspirin advertising is to position the product as
a universal remedy that is best taken once too often than not often
enough. In a current campaign, BAYER even describes Aspirin as a
"wonder drug". In so doing, the sometimes serious or even deadly side
effects of the product are swept under the carpet. Indeed, because of
these side effects, Aspirin should only be taken regularly if advised
by a physician (FDA Warns Bayer Over Claims on 2 Aspirin Products).
Please contact us for more information: CBGnetwork@aol.com
Coalition against BAYER Dangers
Tel: (+49) 211-333 911 Fax: (+49) 211-333 940
please send an e-mail for receiving the English newsletter Keycode
BAYER free of charge
Prof. Juergen Junginger, designer, Krefeld,
Prof. Dr. Juergen Rochlitz, chemist, former member of the Bundestag,
Wolfram Esche, attorney, Cologne
Dr. Sigrid Müller, pharmacologist, Bremen
Eva Bulling-Schroeter, member of the Bundestag, Berlin
Prof. Dr. Anton Schneider, biologist, Neubeuern
Dr. Janis Schmelzer, historian, Berlin
Dr. Erika Abczynski, pediatrician, Dormagen
March 17th, 2009
Our toxic world: From smog to baby bath, it’s hard to know the risks
By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now
Quick get me to a de-tox chamber!
I hate to pile on, but underneath all the bad news about our sickly
economy and fragile atmosphere is an oil slick of foreboding tidings
about our ailing everyday environment.
Take last week’s study in the New England Journal of Medicine showing
that people living in the smoggiest cities are more likely to die from
respiratory diseases. The study of nearly half a million adults found
that ground-level ozone has a longer-term impact than previously
recognized, resulting in “a significant increase in the risk of death
from respiratory causes”. That makes so much sense. We’re warned to
stay in on “alert” days when ozone levels are high; especially the
young, the old and people with asthma. It stands to reason that ozone
could be cumulatively damaging.
Or consider this week’s release of a European study linking youngsters
using cell phones to a five-fold elevated risk of malignant brain
Or the new Kaiser Permanente/Silent Spring analysis showing an
elevated breast cancer risk associated with certain pharmaceuticals,
including an anti-fungal, a diuretic and an antibiotic?
You could quickly drown in this kind of news. But we can also be
encouraged that many non-profits, government organizations and
researchers are finally focusing on the connections between
environmental pollution and disease, and corralling the information so
we can begin to extricate ourselves.
The Silent Spring Institute and Susan G. Komen For the Cure recently
surveyed the research and distilled 216 chemicals that were found to
cause breast tumors in animal studies. The free database they created
with this information shows that 73 of the chemicals are present in
consumer products or contaminants in food and 35 are air pollutants.
That’s a lot of chemicals, and it’s unclear which are the worst and
there are still genetic proclivities and other factors involved in
this devastatingly common disease, but these are at least visible
Last week the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, a coalition of groups,
shone a light on harmful chemicals in baby products, for which they
blame weak U.S. labeling requirements.
They found 1,4 dioxane and formaldehyde in a variety of kiddie bath
products such as Johnson’s Baby Shampoo and Sesame Street Bubble Bath.
Both chemicals are listed as probable carcinogens by the EPA; 1,4
dioxane is banned from personal care products at any level, even trace
amounts, in Europe. Formaldehyde is banned from them in Sweden and
Japan. (See more on the full report on the Environmental Working Group
Some other findings from the study:
* American Girl shower products were found to contain the highest
levels of 1,4-dioxane found in the tests.
* Two samples of Baby Magic Baby Lotion contained levels of
formaldehyde that would trigger warning label requirements in Europe.
The report noted that the 1,4 dioxane turns up, ironically, as a
byproduct of processes to make products more gentle, and its use is
Beauty product manufacturers were not happy to even see the issue in
the news again, saying that these trace amounts of chemicals are not
cause for concern, and that their products meet current guidelines set
by the Food and Drug Administration in the United States.
Naterra International Inc., which owns Baby Magic products, called the
report “patently false and a shameful and cynical attempt by an
activist group to incite and prey upon parental worries and concerns
in order to push a political, legislative and legal agenda.”
Naterra also noted that: “When present, these chemicals would likely
be found at very low levels precisely because companies have gone to
great lengths in the formulation and manufacturing processes to ensure
that the products are safe and gentle
for children and also protected from harmful bacterial growth.”
Of course, we don’t know the precise effect of these chemical
exposures, and clearly humans can withstand an onslaught, given the
glues, VOCs and flame retardants wafting around our own homes, not to
mention the pesticides on our lawns and the air pollution in our
That’s been part of the problem, actually. There are so many chemical
agents acting in our lives that researchers often can’t nail down the
links or the danger thresholds, let alone the precise causality
between a problem and its trigger. Which can cause us to worry about
what we should be worried about. A vexing position, at best.
The EWG, a co-founder of the Campaign for Safer Cosmetics, suggest we
weigh this issues by looking at our “body burden” of chemicals, or our
total load; so we can reduce our exposure, as best as we can. One
person who’s trying to break through with that message is Ken Cook, co-
founder of EWG. He’s on a mission to educate us about the everyday
poisons that should be on our watch list. The San Francisco Chronicle
recently ran an excellent article on Cook’s road show, noting that
some are likening him to Al Gore, for sounding the alarm in this
We hope to bring you more on that, soon too.
Copyright © 2009 Green Right Now | Distributed by Noofangle Media
HSPH: Study Finds Republicans Report Better Health Than Democrats
The FINANCIAL -- A new study from the Harvard School of Public Health
(HSPH) finds that individuals who identify themselves as Republicans
report lower rates of poor health than those who identify as
Democrats. The study appears in advance online as a research letter on
March 5, 2009 on the International Journal of Epidemiology website.
"Previous studies in various industrialized countries have shown that
areas in which the majority are conservatives tend to have lower
mortality levels. Often this difference has been interpreted to
reflect the fact that conservative areas tend to have higher levels of
socioeconomic status," said S V Subramanian, lead author and associate
professor of society, human development and health at HSPH. "This new
study correlates political inclination and health at the individual
level and shows that, in the United States, socioeconomic differences
between Republican and Democrats explain only a part of the health
difference between the two groups. There seems to be something else
about Republicans that keeps them healthier."
Subramanian and his co-author, Jessica Perkins, a doctoral student in
the Department of Health Policy at Harvard University, analyzed data
from the 1972-2006 General Social Surveys. Respondents were asked
questions about their health, whether they smoked and their political
inclination. After controlling for demographic and socioeconomic
factors, the study found that Republicans were 26% less likely to
report poor health than Democrats. Republicans were also 15% less
likely to be smokers compared with Democrats.
The authors hypothesize that the better health reported by Republicans
may reflect the Republican value of individual responsibility, which
may lead to health-promoting behaviors. They also note that
Republicans may exhibit greater religiosity than Democrats, which
could lead to greater health-promoting conditions, such as stronger
social ties and networks. The researchers conclude that further
research is required to determine whether a person's political
ideology is an independent risk factor or a marker of something else.
S V Subramanian is supported by the National Institutes of Health
Career Development Award (NHLBI 1 K25 HL081275).
"Are Republicans Healthier Than Democrats," S V Subramanian and
Jessica Perkins, International Journal of Epidemiology, online March
International Journal of Epidemiology
Warning Industry Propaganda Below
March 18, 2009
Kitchener Waterloo Record
Lawn-care industry is responsible
Re: Provincewide Pesticide Ban Takes Effect April 22 -- March 5
The minimal coverage the provincial pesticide ban got in the Waterloo
Region Record is a concern to me. Between 19,000 and 21,000 jobs
potentially could be affected or lost by the end of 2009 due to the
implementation of this ban because of the uncertainty it creates in
the minds of people.
Why does no one seem to care? At a time when job preservation should
be paramount, the government seeks to decimate a thriving, profitable
Are they in collusion with the environmental activists?
For years, the professional lawn-care industry has been using fewer
pesticides, and has been advising its clients to make changes that
have led to less dependence on pesticides.
The Ontario government is replacing federally tested, safe, pest
control products with unknown and untested alternatives, some of which
are far more toxic and far less effective than those presently used.
It is clear that the Ontario government has been duped by the
Damning and inaccurate reports, such as those issued by the Ontario
College of Family Physicians and the Canadian Cancer Society, have
already been brought into question by credible peer reviews.
Property owners will soon see less-than-desirable results. Some
property owners may seek solutions beyond the realm of the
I hope the manufacturers and professionals seek legal compensation
from the provincial government for defamation of their brands due to
Why does no one in the provincial government seem to care about our
investment in making our planet a better place, or care about our
staff or our lives?
Owner, Peerless Turfcare
March 17, 2009
Pesticide ban limited, problematic
To the editor:
Re: Cosmetic pesticide ban offers green choice for our health,
editorial, March 13.
I believe the content of this editorial and the denial of pesticide
use by homeowners about to be made law simply confirms the limited
thought processes of our premier and others on this subject.
Tons of pesticides can still be used on extensive tracts of land such
as farms, sports fields and golf courses. Where do people play golf?
Where do children play a major proportion of their sports? Where are
our food products produced?
Yet a homeowner cannot use these same products on his tiny bit of
grass surrounding most homes that are built today.
How great is the problem with asthma affecting today's children and
others with otherwise limited pulmonary function, including the
elderly? When pristine lawns, made so by limited and safe usage of
pesticides, become weed lots what will the markedly increased
production of pollens have to do with the increased number and
severity of attacks of asthma and pulmonary distress?
It is time for the do-gooders to think rather than simply dictate.
But, then, that is not the style of politicians or of people in high
It is also sacrosanct that any enacted law should be equally
applicable to all individuals. But, then again, justice was never
meant to be fair, I suppose.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Landscape Management Blog
Force of Nature zeros in on Ontario pesticide ban
The Ontario pesticide ban is scheduled to take effect in April. About
250 products are being taken away from residential lawn care. A rather
remarkable e-newsletter, called Force of Nature, being written by
William H. Gathercole, a long-time Green Industry trainer, instructor
and columnist, offers a wealth of information on the ban, plus some
fascinating personal commentary.
He says the opinions in the e-newsletter don’t reflect those of
everyone in the Green Space Industry, or, on occasion, even his own
associates. In fact, he admits that he and his team may sometimes be
“irreverent or fearless” with their commentary, which is somewhat of
an understatement. The enewsletter is unlike anything of its kind that
shows up in my email.
Gathercole says that he’s been accused of being anti–environment, but
he considers himself a Green Industry advocate, which, he points out,
hasn’t stopped him from criticizing the industry on occasion — when he
deems that it deserves criticism.
Gathercole, who holds a horticulture degree from the University of
Guelph and another pure and applied science degree from McGill
University, is a frequent contributor to Canada's TURF & Recreation
He says he’s been following “environmental terrorism” for more than a
quarter of century. Now he’s writing about it.
Stay up to date on the Ontario pesticide issue via his “Force of
Nature” e-newsletter by dropping him an email at
email@example.com — Ron Hall
posted by LM Staff @ 6:37 PM 0 comments
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Lawn chemicals stockpiled
Bug, weed killers fly off shelves in advance of April ban
by Doug Schmidt
Homeowners bent on maintaining bug- and weed-free lawns are
stockpiling toxic garden chemicals before they become illegal in
Ontario on Earth Day, April 22.
"From what I hear, a lot of people are going to use it after April
22," said Larry Seguin, owner of the Tecumseh Home Hardware Building
"On the weekend, I had a guy come in who bought $400 worth -- enough
for three to four years," said Seguin. "People have nice lawns and
they want to keep them nice," he added.
While a growing number of larger retailers no longer carry them,
Seguin said his store will be selling the soon-to-be-outlawed
products, such as Roundup and Killex, right up to the legal deadline.
"I've heard that people are stocking up -- fine, it's legal until
April 22. After that, they're breaking the law," said Environment
Ministry spokeswoman Kate Jordan.
She said the initial focus once the Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Act takes
effect will be on outreach and education to ensure Ontarians are
better acquainted with the new regulations.
Enforcement will be largely complaint-driven, said Jordan, adding that
continued flouting of the new law after initial warnings will result
in orders that can result in ticketing, fines or court action.
Derek Coronado of the Citizens Environment Alliance said it's good
news that Ontario is becoming the second province, after Quebec, to
prohibit the use of chemical pesticides for lawn and garden cosmetic
use. But he's concerned that retailers, despite the upcoming ban, are
still selling those products and that some people might be stockpiling
them for continued use once they're banned.
"It flies in the face of why the law was created -- they're toxic
right now," he said.
Coronado said he is also concerned that enforcement is being left to
officers with the environment ministry, whose ranks are already
stretched too thin.
'SLASH AND BURN'
"They still haven't fully recovered from the slash and burn of the
Harris years. They still don't have the number of people on the ground
needed for the multitude of tasks they're currently responsible for,"
Ontario's new law supercedes bylaws that were being implemented by a
growing number of municipalities, including Windsor.
The ministry's Jordan said there may be the occasional independent
action taken by environmental officers based out of the district
offices, such as Windsor's, but that most of the enforcement will come
from complaints by the public, such as neighbours telling on
The "best route for complaints" in the local area will be to call the
environment ministry's Windsor office at 519-948-1464, she said.
Complaints can also be made through the toll-free general inquiry line
There are exceptions to the new law for public health or safety
reasons, such as fighting the mosquito-borne West Nile virus or
killing stinging insects like wasps or plants poisonous to the touch.
Other exceptions include agriculture and forestry, and golf courses
will be allowed to use pesticides subject to provincially approved
The ban comes after years of lobbying and growing concerns among
scientists and health experts who have linked pesticide use to cancer,
such as non-Hodgkins lymphoma, neurological illness, such as
Parkinson's disease, and birth defects.
"If it's dangerous, then yes, they're no good," said Amanda London, a
homeowner in the 1100 block of Dougall Avenue who was out raking with
her young daughter and their dog on a sunny warm afternoon Tuesday.
"It can be a pain in the butt, and people don't like change, but in
the big picture it's going to be better for the environment," said Tim
Tremblay, who also spent time Tuesday raking in front of his home on
firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-255-5586
- - -
INFORMATION ON WEB
For more information on what will be forbidden, what's allowed and
what the alternatives are, visit www.ene.gov.on.ca or call the
ministry's public information centre at 1-800-565-4923.
© The Windsor Star 2009
Departments >> Business Management 2/17/2009
America's Love for Lawns
How you can profit from our nation’s historic lawn care obsession.
America's Love for Lawns - Image
To say Americans have an unabashed love affair with their lawns would
certainly not qualify as an understatement.
It’s estimated that some 60 million Americans manicure their lawn to
varying degrees, and around half of that number hire lawn care
professionals to keep their grass, shrubs and trees healthy, green and
and tidy. Lawns in the U.S. are also said to cover an area about the
size of New York State, and lawn care is estimated to be a $59 billion
However, the history of the well-maintained lawn is a relatively short
one. The English, especially those owning large estates, are credited
with imbedding the image of a stately lawn into the psyche of the
world. Some historians believe that desires for lawns originated in
the 17th Century when royal families found them ideal for showcasing
massive castles, manor homes and for flaunting wealth and importance.
Soon, the land around a home became a status symbol rather than a
place to plant gardens or trees.
As early as 1841, Andrew Jackson Downing published a landscape-garden
book aimed at the American audience. The Newburgh, N.Y., nursery owner
saw landscaping as uplifting to the human spirit, and labeled it a
civilizing factor that a still rough and tumble American society
Soon after books and journals showed Americans what is was like to
live in luxury, a lawn craze started sweeping the U.S. in the
mid-1800s. Beautiful lawns were touted as essential for a person that
wished to make style and wealth statements. And with the advent of the
push mower around 1870, anyone who owned property could have a lawn.
At the turn of the 20th Century, various groups and organizations
(most prominent among them being the U.S. Department of Agriculture
and the U.S. Golf Association) conducted research to find an ideal
grass seed with which the growing homeowner class could plant to help
The USDA finally settled upon a mixture of seeds from around the
world, including Bermudagrass from Africa, bluegrass from Europe and a
mix of fescues and bentgrass that could withstand America’s multiple
Such inventions as the rotary mower, garden hose and sprinklers gave
Americans more tools to establish and maintain lawns, and the desired
home-centric, post-World War II lifestyles spurred lawns to even
greater acceptance in American society. Homeowners in Levittown — the
country’s first planned communities that sprouted up in New York and
Pennsylvania in the late 1940s and early 1950s — were shining examples
of tasteful uniformity. Indeed, the owners of the communities agreed
by pact to mow their lawns two times a week between the months of
April and November.
The relative peace of President Dwight Eisenhower’s administration in
the 1950s further enhanced the image of lawns as part of the “American
Dream.” Pictures of dad mowing the lawn, mom weeding the flowerbed,
kids romping about the yard and backyard barbecues were etched into
the national consciousness. Further lawn support came from the first
color telecasts of professional golf events, which spurred more
fascination with large, manicured green spaces.
The advent of two-person working families and subsequent attempts to
manage ever-expanding lawns and landscapes in the 1970s and 1980s led
Americans to turn to lawn care professionals for the maintenance of
their prized outdoor possessions. These individuals had the time, know-
how and tools to properly maintain yards and landscape.
But despite this positive, progressive history of lawns, there have
been detractors to the lush emerald carpets that homeowners adore.
In his book “American Green,” author Ted Steinberg virtually likens
the desire for a perfect lawn to an obsessive-compulsive disorder –
all while railing against the perfect lawns that are now commonplace.
Yet while attracting media attention, these books and studies seem to
be merely interesting sidebars in the never-ending saga of lawns. A
study by researchers at Ohio State University estimates that the space
devoted to turfgrass in the U.S. is growing at a rate of almost 600
square miles a year. Other studies have shown that money spent on
maintaining and enhancing a lawn is one of the best investments a
homeowner can make.
“A properly cared for lawn and landscape helps build curb appeal,”
says David Klemm, president of Connecticut-based Klemm Real Estate.
“Very often, the first impression a potential buyer has when
approaching a house is lasting. A well-groomed lawn and landscape is a
major selling point, and lawn care professionals and landscapers can
help create that curb appeal that is so important to a home’s overall
In a Money magazine report, landscaping results in a whopping 100 to
200 percent recovery value per investment, topping such investments as
kitchen and bathroom remodeling and the addition of a swimming pool to
“Americans love their lawns,” says Jim Fetter, Bayer Environmental
Science sales manager. “Many people take pleasure working in the yard,
while others simply enjoy the activities that can take place on the
In a recent Bayer Lawn Care Institute (LCI) study, 40 percent of those
surveyed said they have far less time now than they did five years
ago. Another LCI study showed that a staggering 90 percent of
homeowners prefer using experienced lawn care professionals for turf
and landscape issues, pointing out the glaring fact that, while
homeowners want beautiful lawns, maintaining them by themselves is
becoming increasingly difficult.
This is why lawn and landscape professionals need to understand how to
properly utilize Americans’ love affair with lawns.
“Two of the most compelling reasons that homeowners hire a
professional lawn care provider are convenience and expertise,” Fetter
says. “When we saw the results of our surveys we encouraged lawn care
operators to promote that the hiring of a professional will result in
more free time and to communicate this statement through marketing
materials, such as invoice stuffers, door hangers and newsletters, or
simply mentioning it when talking to current or existing customers.”
In a nod to current concerns over the use of chemicals, he added that
LCOs should also promote their expertise in safely and effectively
Because many LCOs have college degrees in horticultural science or
certifications related to lawn care, they also have the expertise and
knowledge to protect homeowners from new invasive pests – such as the
Emerald Ash Borer and Chilli Thrips – from attacking expensive and
sometimes irreplaceable trees and ornamentals.
“Expert service providers are important to protect a homeowner’s
landscape investment. Most homeowners lack the expertise to identify
and address these challenging issues. LCOs should promote their
credentials whenever possible.”
Dan Rothermel, vice president of the Lawn Care Association of
Pennsylvania, strongly believes in what he calls an ideal “passive
marketing tool” that can help lawn care professionals spread the
gospel of the ideal lawn.
“One of the best marketing tools you have is the neighbor’s yard next
to a home that you service. The lawn you are caring for is nice and
thick, green and weed free and the lawn next door may have a lot of
weeds and be off color. In the world of keeping up with the Joneses,
it is a strong passive marketing tool.
“Another tool we use in marketing is telling potential customers not
to take our word for it, but rather take a look at the five or six
other homes that we care for in a neighborhood. It’s visual proof of
what lawn care professionals can do to make a person’s lawn stand
With a fledgling economy, many homeowners are tightening their budgets
and putting off vacations or new car purchases. But one item Americans
likely won’t scrimp on is their lawn and yard, says David Hofacre,
president of the Ohio Lawn Care Association.
Hofacre says LCOs should take the opportunity to point out that having
a well-maintained lawn can be a rather inexpensive pleasure.
“People will always have pride in where they live,” he explains. “The
economy may be slipping, but keeping one’s home and yard looking nice
is something people won’t give up. And people will likely be spending
more time at home this year so they will want a nice looking yard,
even more than in the past.”
While homeowners may begin the year trying to do more of the yard work
themselves, Hofacre says that will wear off.
“By the time summer rolls around and there are so many things taking
up homeowners’ time, they need professional help.”
Lynn Luczkowski, owner of L2 Communications, says that a slow economy
can provide opportunity for LCOs.
“Especially now, during economic uncertainty, lawn care professionals
can market to customers the importance of preserving what matters most
– a person’s own home and yard. If someone is going to spend more time
at home, they should make the most of what they have.”
Luczkowski adds that LCOs can orchestrate contests, promotions and
“makeovers much like the popular reality television shows.” Moreover,
they can take photos and personalize how they turned a “grubby looking
yard into a paradise.”
Jackie Beck, owner of Beck Communications in Old Saybrook, Conn., says
lawn care professionals need to have a strong communication plan in
place at all times in order to reach out and touch American’s love
affairs with their yards.
“Lawn care professionals should offer seasonal tips via their Web
site, e-mail blasts or direct mailings, all while incorporating their
products and services. This is a great way to keep in front of current
and potential customers on an ongoing basis. When it comes to needing
services, your company will be on the top of the list for a quote.”
But Rothermel says LCOs should be careful not to promise customers a
lawn that is too perfect.
“The image some people have of their lawn looking like a golf course
is not always realistic because the typical lawn is not maintained
like a golf course,” he says. “Explain what a customer’s expectations
should be and that a lawn is not something that you can carve out of
granite. It’s always changing and dependent on variables such as
weather and use.”
However, Rothermel says, be prepared to go the extra mile if a
customer wants to seek perfection.
“Offer different levels of service. If someone wants one dandelion
pulled, then offer that level of service. You have to remember that
these types of people are often your best customers and that they will
talk to other homeowners.”
Fetter also advises lawn care professionals to not downplay the desire
of many homeowners to be more environmentally sensitive.
“Show concern for what products are being used on their property. It’s
critical that LCOs take time to educate their customer on the safety
of the products and how using them as-directed actually benefits the
He adds that homeowners are becoming increasingly interested in
improving the quality of their lawns and landscaping – not just from a
cosmetic standpoint, but also in terms of their lawn’s ability to
resist stress and use less water.
“LCOs need to adapt to this new type of customer and ensure their
service matches up to the demand.”
Says Beck, “Make sure your marketing and advertising is truthful.
Unsubstantiated claims can backfire on a business and customers will
question the validity of your company.”
Go Fore The Green Blog - Ontario Pesticide Ban
Canadian municipalities have been banning the use of Cosmetic
Pesticides for a number of years, now Ontario has officially stepped
in and will be making it a provincial law.
“We have fulfilled our commitment to ban the sale and use of cosmetic
pesticides in Ontario. I'm proud to say that, when the ban takes
effect on Earth Day, we will have eliminated this unnecessary risk to
our environment, our families, and especially our children.” – John
Gerretsen, Minister of the Environment
I've been reporting on the possibility, numerous drafts and responses
of the Ontario Cosmetic Pesticide Ban since I started this blog, now
the McGuinty Government has released the regulations and I've got
I'll be covering this issue a lot over the next week, this first entry
will review the facts of the legislation as it relates to golf
courses. I've added some comments and clarification in green. I've
tried to remain unbiased, but I couldn't help myself at some points.
Just a side note, I'm a very passionate environmentalist but I get the
impression that some of the features in this legislation are not about
protecting the environment and I'm afraid that they will cause some
confusion amongst the public, you'll see which ones I mean.
Ontario Regulation 63/09
Golf courses, accreditation by integrated pest management body
18. (1) If a pesticide mentioned in section 16 is used in relation to
a golf course, the owner or operator of the golf course must ensure
that the golf course is accredited by an integrated pest management
body that has been approved by the director for the purposes of this
According to section 16, Class 9 pesticides include this list here.
Although the regulations do not mention the name or details of the
"integrated pest management body", it is safe to assume they are
referring to the IPM Accreditation Program developed by the IPM-PHC
Council of Ontario. It is not mentioned what, if any, changes will be
made to the program other than those mentioned in the Annual Report,
see Section 19 (scroll down).
(2) Subject to subsection (3), the owner or operator of a golf course
is exempt from subsection (1) until the later of the following dates:
1. April 22, 2012.
2. The second anniversary of the first day pesticides are used on the
For example if I'm the superintendent of GoForeTheGreen Golf Club and
I do not apply a Class 9 product until July 18th of 2010, then I will
not have to fulfill the requirements under this regulation until July
the 18th of 2012. Or, if my golf club does not open until 2020 and I
first apply pesticides on June 30th of 2020, then I must be accredited
by June 30th of 2022.
(3) Subsection (2) applies if the golf course is registered by an
integrated pest management body mentioned in subsection (1) before the
later of the following dates and the registration is maintained:
1. April 22, 2010.
2. The first day pesticides are used on the golf course.
Meaning, get IPM Accredited by April 22 of 2010 or else you cannot use
the Class 9 products until you are IPM accredited.
(4) If the owner or operator of a golf course has taken steps to meet
the condition set out in subsection (3) and the Director is of the
opinion that meeting that condition would cause undue hardship to the
owner or operator of the golf course, the Director may, in writing,
specify a later date by which the golf course must be registered by an
integrated pest management body mentioned in subsection (1) for the
purposes of subsection (3).
If your late, you've got to kiss some ass before being allowed to use
the Class 9 products. Ha! I'm pretty sure they won't be handing many
of these out.
(5) For the purposes of this section and sections 19, 20 and 21, the
operator of a golf course is a person who is responsible for managing
or supervising the golf course and includes a golf course
superintendent or manager.
This is where I find it a little confusing and I'll be trying to get
some clarification. Read the above one more time, doesn't it seem like
they are referring to an employee? However, section 19.4.6 refers to
"the golf course’s integrated pest management agent or another person
approved in writing by the integrated pest management body for the
purposes of this section". So that means that there may be some
exceptions, but I can't find more details on that.
For details on the current Pesticide Applicators License go here.
Golf courses, annual report
19. (1) The owner or operator of a golf course on which a pesticide
mentioned in section 16 is used shall ensure that an annual report is
prepared in accordance with this section.
(2) The annual report mentioned in subsection (1) shall cover the
period from January 1 to December 31 in a year in which a pesticide
mentioned in section 16 is used on the golf course and shall be
prepared before June 30 in the following year.
So my 2010 records must be submitted by June 30th 2011. FYI, you'll
notice down in Section 20, subsection 7 it notes that subsection 1,
referring to the public meetings, does not apply until January 1,
2012. So I think it means that I must turn in my 2012 records by June
30th 2013, but I must first show them to the public by December 1st
(3) The annual report mentioned in subsection (1) shall be prepared in
a form approved by the Director.
This format? More than likely will be released through the IPM
(4) The annual report mentioned in subsection (1) shall set out the
following information with respect to the use of Class 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
and 7 pesticides on the golf course:
1. The name of each pesticide ingredient contained in the pesticides
used and the reasons for the use of pesticides containing those
Active Ingredient: Trifloxystrobn
Pest: Brown Patch
2. The quantity in kilograms of each pesticide ingredient used.
Total Product Used: 905 grams
Total Active Ingredient: .18 oz
3. If an annual report was prepared previously, an explanation of any
differences between the information provided under paragraphs 1 and 2
and the information provided under those paragraphs in the most
recently prepared annual report.
4. A map or plan of the golf course showing all application areas.
This is new, but a fantastic feature that will help staff monitor hot
spots in the future. I've been doing these maps for years, overlapping
them with the local watershed, soil types, habitat zones, buffer
zones, and water quality monitoring sites.
5. An explanation of how maintaining accreditation by the integrated
pest management body minimized the use of the pesticide ingredients on
the golf course and how it will minimize the use during the year in
which the report is prepared.
Self explanatory - not sure if the program itself will really
accomplish what they are setting out to do here, let's keep in mind
that superintendents have been doing this kind of work for years.
Don't forget a golf course must recover the cost of products they use,
while landscape companies (who are not exempt) make more money. This
is one point I hope the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario keep
in mind as they continue to lobby the government to not exempt golf
courses from the ban. I hope they give our industry a fair chance to
demonstrate and prove our commitment to the environment. In fact, if
they are interested, I could walk them through it.
6. The name, contact information, registration number and signature of
the golf course’s integrated pest management agent or another person
approved in writing by the integrated pest management body for the
purposes of this section.
Employee? Or contractor?
7. Confirmation by the owner or a representative of the owner of the
golf course that the report is complete.
8. Any other information that, in the opinion of the Director, is
relevant to the use of pesticides and with respect to which the
Director has notified the owner or operator of the golf course.
Does this mean that the director can request even more information
than what golf courses are already providing?
(5) Subsection (1) does not apply until January 1, 2010.
Golf courses, public inspection of annual report
20. (1) The owner or operator of a golf course on which a pesticide
mentioned in section 16 is used shall ensure that, on an annual basis,
the annual report mentioned in subsection 19 (1) is made available for
inspection by members of the public in accordance with the following
1. The annual report shall be made available for inspection before
December 1 in the year in which it is required to be prepared.
Should this read "The annual report shall be made available for
inspection before December 1 in the season prior in which it is
required to be prepared"? I ask because in section 19.2 it reads "The
annual report mentioned in subsection (1) shall cover the period from
January 1 to December 31 in a year in which a pesticide mentioned in
section 16 is used on the golf course and shall be prepared before
June 30 in the following year."
You'll notice down in subsection 7 it notes that subsection 1 does not
apply until January 1, 2012. So I think it means that I must turn in
my 2012 records by June 30th 2013, but I must first show them to the
public by December 1st 2012.
2. Not later than 15 days before the annual report is made available
for inspection, the report shall be prepared and clauses (6) (a) and
(c) shall have been complied with.
FYI, Clauses 6A and 6C were not part of the IPM Accreditation Program
previously. See them below.
3. Not later than 15 days before the annual report is made available
for inspection, i. notice shall be published in a newspaper having
general circulation in the area where the golf course is located,
A. the name and address of the golf course,
B. the name and telephone number of the owner or a representative of
the owner of the golf course, and
C. the date on which and the time and place at which the annual report
will be available for inspection, and
ii. subject to subsection (2), a copy of the notice shall be given to
the occupants of each property that abuts or is within 100 metres of
the golf course.
So if the annual report must be available for inspection by the public
before December 1st 2010, then I must place an ad in a local newspaper
declaring the information in A, B and C (above) by November 15th,
because I must present it by the end of the month. I guess this means
that as soon as the snow mold /winter application is down, irrigation
system is blown out, the greens have been covered, and the whole
operations of the club has been laid to bed, the superintendent/agent
must compile all of this information in to an easy to understand
presentation and hold a public meeting.
4. A copy of the notice mentioned in sub paragraph 3 i shall be kept
by the owner or operator for a period of at least two years after its
Makes sense. These reports will be good to refer to from year to year.
(2) For the purpose of clause 38 (1) (c) of the Act, if more than 50
persons must be notified in order to meet the requirement in sub
paragraph 3 ii of subsection (1) and the Director is satisfied that it
would be unduly onerous to give notice in accordance with clause 38
(1) (a) or (b) of the Act or Ontario Regulation 228/07 (Service of
Documents) made under the Act, the notice is sufficiently given if it
is given in a manner approved by the Director.
I'll have to dive into this later, but I think it basically means that
if you are a downtown course and you could potentially have thousands
of people show up, the Director will allow for a lesser means of
(3) In approving a manner of giving notice under subsection (2), the
Director may specify that the manner of giving notice is sufficient
for the purpose of subsequent inspections of annual reports as long as
there is no change in the circumstances relevant to the Director’s
Basically, if the director approves it once, they'll know that the
same should go in the future.
(4) The owner or operator of the golf course or a representative of
the owner or operator of the golf course shall notify the Director of
any changes in the circumstances referred to in subsection (3).20
(5) For a period of at least five years after an annual report
mentioned in subsection 19 (1) is prepared,
(a) if the property where the golf course is located has a building
that is accessible to the public, a copy of the annual report shall be
kept in the building and given, on request, free of charge to any
person who presents himself or herself at the building;
So in the year 2017 I'm going to go to a friends wedding at a golf
course in Ontario. In the clubhouse is a copy of the 2012 report that
must be accessible to me "on request and free of charge". If I'm Joe
Public, how am I going to understand such a report? If I see that area
X was sprayed with XX gallons of Mecoprop Dicamba, what does this mean
to me? I know that this legislation is meant to get rid of those who
spray needlessly and help make pesticide applicators accountable, I
just fail to see how this information is going to make any sense to
Joe Public, no offense Joe.
(b) if the property where the golf course is located does not have a
building that is accessible to the public, a copy of the annual report
shall be kept in a building on the property to which members and
guests of the golf course have access and shall be given, on request,
free of charge to any person who has access to the building;
Same rebuttal as above.
(c) a copy of the annual report shall be given, on request, to a
provincial officer or the Director immediately; and
(d) a copy of the annual report shall be given, on request, to any
person free of charge within seven days after the request.
So I can call the club up one week before the wedding and it will be
ready for me. Ha.
(6) A copy of the most recently prepared annual report mentioned in
subsection 19 (1),
(a) shall be displayed in a prominent place in the building mentioned
in clause (5) (a) or (b);
(b) shall be given to any person free of charge, if the person
requests a copy during ordinary business hours at the building
mentioned in clause (5) (a) or (b); and
(c) shall be posted on a website approved by the Director.
I'm pretty sure this is referring to just the hard data, nevertheless
it's on a Ministry of the Environment website. This makes it easier
for Joe Public to look it up and have no clue what he's looking at
from the comfort of his own home. Ha.
(7) Subsection (1) does not apply until January 1, 2012.
Golf courses, public meeting
21. If an annual report is required to be made available for
inspection by members of the public under section 20, the owner or
operator of the golf course or a representative of the owner or
operator must attend at the date, time and place of the inspection and
present the annual report to the members of the public who are
So that's that. Stay tuned for more details and evaluation of the
Posted by Scott J Morrison email@example.com
Labels: IPM, Ontario, Pesticide Ban, Pesticides
Anonymous, March 5, 2009 3:58 PM
If Lawn companies will not be exempt, why should they loose there
jobs, golf courses shouldnt be exempt either then.
Scott J Morrison, March 5, 2009 11:34 PM
Lawn Care companies make money the more they spray, while spraying
at a golf course cost them money.
Obviously the Ontario government believes the golf industry would
not be able to survive a total ban, and they are right. I've been to
Organic golf courses and they are battling problems that would impede
play and would be considered by most golfers as unacceptable. In my
experience "Organics" is just not there et. That's not to say that
there arent a number of organic/natural products that every golf
course should be experimenting with.
This is perhaps where the RCGA should step up and educate the
golfing public about IPM and pest management in general. Perhaps we
need to try to get golfers expectations to change?
Follow the link below to see a recent report released through
Landscape Ontario. It looks at the golf and lawn care industries, it
really shows how big the turf industries in Ontario are, and how many
people this legislation will affect directly.
A few highlights:
Ontario golf courses employ 6,711 people full time
Ontario Lawn Care Companies employ 20,810 people full time
Gross Revenue in 2007
Golf Courses - $1,250,000
Lawn Care - $1,256,000
More on the upcoming Ontario Pesticide Ban
In response to our recent post regarding the list of nine chemicals
the David Suzuki Foundation feels should be included in the Ontario
Pesticide Ban - F Portenier said...
"What is the prevalence of use of these pesticides in the Golfing
I've decided to do a bit of research for F Portenier and provide the
names of active ingredients listed by DSF by providing links to
approved uses and products that they can be found in. As for which
ones are used for golf? A licensed exterminator can spray a schedule
1-6 pesticide (look here for details), the most common of these
chemicals on golf courses would be the Glyphosate products. It is
important to note that the province of Ontario does expect to exempt
golf courses from any "ban" through the use of an accreditation
program. My understanding is that the province is working towards
updating the IPM Acreditation Program, currently adminstered through
Click here to see which orgainizations/companies are IPM Acredited
under the current program.
Okay, here are the chems:
Abamectin - Used to control insect and mite pests of a range of
agronomic, fruit, vegetable and ornamental crops, and it is used by
homeowners for control of fire ants. Abamectin is also used as a
Uses Here, Here and Here
Products Here, Here and Here
Acetamiprid - Control of Sucking-Type Insects on Leafy Vegetables,
Fruiting Vegetables, Cole Crops, Citrus Fruits, Pome Fruits, Grapes,
Cotton, and Ornamental Plants and Flowers.
Uses Here, Here and Here
Glufosinate Ammonium - The herbicide is a broad spectrum herbicide
which is comparatively bio-degradeable similar to glyphosate.
Glyphosate was first sold by Monsanto under the tradename Roundup, but
is no longer under patent. It is sold under the brand names sold under
trade names Basta, Buster and Liberty. Crops have been developed
(genetically engineered) which are resistant to this herbicide through
the insertion of the bar gene into plants.
Uses Here,and Here
Products Here and Here
Glyphosate Acid is a Herbicide found in products typically used at
golf courses, forestry, agriculture and lawn care industry. Trade
names for products containing glyphosate include Gallup, Landmaster,
Pondmaster, Ranger, Roundup, Rodeo, and Touchdown. It may be used in
formulations with other herbicides.
Uses Here, Here, and Here
Products Here, Here (must scroll down and find Glyphosate Acid on
Isopropylamine Salt of Glyphosate is a Herbicide found in products
typically used at golf courses, lawn care industry, forestry and
Products Here, Here, and Here
Uses Here , Here
Metam is a soil fumigant used as a pesticide, herbicide, and
Products found Here, and Here
Uses found Here, Here and Here
Napropamide is a herbicide mostly used for agriculture. Trade names
for products containing napropamide include Devrinol and R-7465. It
may also be found in formulations with other pesticides such as
monolinuron, nitralin, simazine, trifluralin, tefurthrin, and tebutam.
It is compatible with many other herbicides and fungicides.
Products are found Here,
Uses are found Here, and Here
Thiram is a fungicide mostly used in Agriculture. Common names include
thiram (U.S.), thiuram (Japan), and TMTD (former U.S.S.R.), TMT, and
TMTDS. Trade names include AAtack, Arasan, Aules, Fermide 850,
Fernasan, FMC 2070, Hexathir, Mercuram, Micropearls, Nomersan,
Pomarsol, Puralin, Rezifilm, Rhodiasan Express, Spotrete, Tersan,
Thiosan, Thiotex, Thiramad, Thirame, Thiuramin, Thirasan, Tirampa,
Tiuramyl, TMTC, TMTD 50 Borches, Trametan, Tuads, and Tulisan.
Products containing Thiram can be found Here and Here
Uses Here and Here
* Gender: Male
* Industry: Consulting
* Location: Toronto : Ontario : Canada
Owner and Operator of Out on a Limb. A Toronto based company providing
environmental management solutions to golf courses.
* After attending the University of Toronto's Environmental
* the University of Guelph's Natural Landscape Management program
and studying sustainable agriculture in Australia
* New Zealand and Hawaii
* Scott Morrison started "Out On A Limb" in 2002 as a natural
landscaping company based in Toronto. It was at this time Scott
started working with golf courses assisting with environmental
programs including Audubon certification and habitat restoration.
Since this time Out On A Limb has gathered 40 clients spanning across
Canada has added additional services employees and has received
praise and awards from conservation authorities. Out On A Limb's
growth has made it necessary to hire staff with industry experience
and an interest in the environment.