Sunday, March 8, 2009

No Need to Spray Moths...And More

Sat, March 7, 2009

London Free Press

No Need to Spray Moths


A spokesperson for a local environment group says a program to spray
gypsy moths in west London is unnecessary and the money would be
better spent elsewhere.

Bill DeYoung, technical director with ReForest London said the
infestation of gypsy moths that has been stripping trees in Byron and
West London will subside naturally even if the city does nothing.

City of London forester Ivan Listar recommended last week that a
biological pesticide called Btk be sprayed on two areas of Byron.

DeYoung said the gypsy moth population has spiked twice in the last 30
years but then falls back to more normal levels.

“The gypsy moth has been around for a long time. It can kill branches
and can kill trees but it won’t kill a whole forest,” he said.

DeYoung said Btk has been used safely to treat infestations but he is
concerned the spraying may do damage to other caterpillars not
considered pests.

Listar told the city’s environment and transportation committee that
hundreds of trees are endangered in west London and the infestation
could spread to Springbank Park. The larvae of the moth eat up foliage
and oak

trees are the favourite target.

The spraying would be done with a helicopter or small plane and cost
$65,000. The spray program still has to be approved by city council
and would take place form mid-May to early June.

Hank Daniszewski is a Free Press business reporter

Warning Industry Propaganda Below

Thursday, March 5th, 2009

Gerry's Blog

My View on Ontario’s Cosmetic Pesticide Ban

The Torstar environment reporter Moira Welsh-- called me Wednesday
afternoon. I’m not sure if I gave her all the right answers, or all
the politically correct answers. It may be that the way my remarks are
presented will make me or the Lawn Care Operators, in general, look
like the “Bad guys.” I was trying to be careful how I said things,
but reporters can take things out of context or leave out a few words
to give it the slant that they want. We shall see. So here are my
viewpoints in context and with explanations.

The role of a newspaper reporter is to please his/her editor whose job
it is to sell papers. Much like the role of a politician is not to do
the will of the people or to serve their needs- it’s to get power-
either to get elected or to get re-elected. This was brought home to
me when Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff said it was his job is to
defeat the government. If he had said it was to help Canadians or to
protect Canada, then one could believe some of the things he says.

I said I was most upset that the media was given advance notice of the
announcement, not by the MOE (Minstry of the Environment) but by CAPE
(Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment.) The Hamilton
Spectator, a Torstar publication published an article on March 3,
entitled “Ontario set to implement pesticide ban Rules for sale of
restricted-use products to be phased in”

Do the Activists and the McGuinty Government have a secret agreement?
(see CAPE Newsletter Summer 2008)[227]=i-227-1434c181dcca811bc71e7db77dde7b3a&cmd[252]=i-252-1434c181dcca811bc71e7db77dde7b3a

Why didn’t the MOE have the courtesy to tell the stakeholders of the
date when the changes would be announced? I was at the Ontario
Turfgrass Symposium at the University of Guelph on February 18th, this
year, when an MOE spokeperson, Violet van Wassenaer made a
presentation on the proposed ban. She stated that the government
wanted to have everything "clear and transparent." Yet when repeatedly
asked "When will the ban start?" would simply say "the spring of

I received that same week my operator's licence in the mail. I thought
that if MOE wanted to let all the affected businesses know what was
happening, they could have saved some postage. All Pesticide
operators' licences expire on February 15th of each year. Why not let
them know when the ban is to be implemented? Or even to tell us that
we would find out on March 4th.

Never mind that the MOE wasn’t very forthright with information.
Informing the industry of when to expect the changes would at least
show some respect and courtesy. I feel betrayed by the Ministry that
should be a partner with the industry in promoting change and in

If the MOE is seen as an enemy, it will be harder to get co-operation
and more importantly- a willingness to co-operate. Lawn care operators
follow the rules. Homeowners may keep illegal products in the garage
and use them illegally after dark. Lawn care businesses apply their
products in the daytime and are highly visible.

I explained how insects are different from weeds. With insects, we
have been able to use organic products to stop insect damage. When the
lawn has a brown spot, and we apply an organic product, we may only
control half the insects. But if the lawn damage is stopped, even with
only 50% of the bugs controlled, we are successful.

With weeds, it is a lot different. No matter which product is used, if
99% of the weeds are eradicated, but there are a couple of weeds next
to the front door, people may say, “look at the weeds they missed.”
People look at weeds and insects differently: insects -- they look at
the results; weeds – you actually see the weed itself.

I explained that I believe that we have this new Cosmetic Pesticides
Ban because politicians listen to polls. This is political science not
true science. If the polls say 60% of the people want a pesticide ban,
it’s mostly because they don’t understand the science and they are not
sure what a pesticide is. Politicians, however, only see votes. It
didn’t matter that Ontario already has a host of regulations to
regulate pesticides and to regulate those that apply them. A
politician did nothing unless he does something new. So let’s make a
new law.

I said that the traditional (now banned) weed killer mixture applied
to a lawn is 400 times less poisonous than coffee with caffeine. Now
toxicity is not the only criteria, but the Health Canada’s PMRA (Pest
Management Regulatory Agency) won’t ever say a product is safe. I may
have said that the PMRA would never say a pesticide was safe. So if
one took that out of context it could be used against me. Even with
food additives, such as aluminum the PMRA uses the phrase “does not
pose an unacceptable risk.”

She asked will the industry change. I said yes, people (customers)
have been used to a certain expectation and that expectation will
change. Weed control will be less effective. To have a completely weed
free lawn will be more difficult and more expensive. Most people will
probably not go for an extremely high price and no weeds. They will
likely opt for a medium price with an acceptable amount of weeds. A
healthy, green, thick lawn will resist weeds. A healthy, green thick
lawn with a few weeds will still look good.

In order to achieve a lawn completely weed-free, will be difficult
with the products currently available. Sarritor touted to be a good
alternative, has some difficulties, and is not available until perhaps
fall. Some hand weeding may be required. Will it increase employment?
Perhaps, but it will be minimum wage, temporary student type labour,
rather than better paying, trained technicians.

She wanted my photo – but only if I would pose with the products that
were to be banned. I said no. Not sure that I want my photo to be
associated with banned pesticides. Maybe, if you took a picture of me
with a bag of Merit granular insecticide and put the caption I choose-
“Granular Merit Grub Killer- less toxic than salt but BANNED.”

Again, I am not for the ban. We will continue to serve the needs of
our many loyal customers. It’s just that we now have fewer tools
available to do a good job. Programs, products, prices and
expectations (what word starts with P- prospects?) will change. We
will adapt, customers will adapt. Life will go on. The King of Green
will continue to be the King of Green and will become the King of
Green (the Green that is over used and often applied to things
Environmentally Friendly, etc)

Our Lawn Care programs here at Turf King Hamilton will continue to be
the best value for those who are looking for expertise, customer
centred service and high quality products. And if anyone complains
about their lawn- we can always blame McGuinty!


Gerry Okimi B.Sc.(Agr.)
Owner, Gerry has a B.Sc.(Agr.) degree in Environmental Horticulture
from the University of Guelph. He has many years of experience in many
aspects of horticulture. They include: lawn cutting, landscape design
& installation, nursery growing, retail garden centre and of course,
lawn care. Gerry has served on the executive of the Hamilton Chapter
of Landscape Ontario. Please call if you have any questions about your
lawn or garden.

Hamilton Turf King
Hamilton's Lawn Care Experts since 1962
95 Hempstead Dr, Unit 14,
Hamilton, ON
L8W 2Y6
Tel: 905.318.6677
Fax: 905.318.6682
Information: Call toll free: 1.888.TURFKING (888.887.3546)

Turf King is environmentally responsible.

We have a number of no-pesticide lawn care programs available. More
people are interested in these options than ever before. Our focus is
on having your lawn and yard look its best by using the best
horticultural practices available. The best way to keep lawns healthy
is to start with good soil, good varieties, proper mowing heights,
high quality fertilizer and proper watering. A healthy turf requires
less maintenance and is better able to withstand and resist weeds,
insects and diseases. If problems arise, we look for solutions that
minimize the use of pesticides.


Industrial Vegetation Management Association of Alberta - Seminar 2009
2009 IVMAA Tradeshow and Seminar
New Challenges - New Solutions

March 10 to 12, 2009
Marriot River Cree Resort
West Edmonton, Alberta

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

8:30 to 9:15 am
Janet McLean, Alberta Environment, Edmonton
The IVM industry in Alberta – Looking Back….Moving Forward

9:15 to 10:00 am
Jeffery Lowes, M-REP Communications, Kingston, Ontario
Investigating Pesticide Bylaws

10:00 to 10:30 am
Refreshment Break and Tradeshow Browsing

10:30 to 11:00 am
Barry Gibbs, Dow AgroSciences, Calgary
Pesticide Regulatory Issues- Defending the Freedom to Operate

2:30 to 3:00 pm
Vanessa Carney, Alberta Invasive Plant Council
AIPC - Who we are, What we do, and Why it matters

3:00 to 3:30 pm
Refreshment Break and Tradeshow Browsing

3:30 to 4:15 pm
Mike Undershultz, Alberta Sustainable Resource Development, Edmonton
Alberta's Most Wanted Weeds-Survey Results, Identification and Risk

4:15 to 5:00 pm
Andrew Stiles, Weed Warrior
Heros Wanted! Battle the Number 1 Threat to Alberta Sovereignty

Industrial Vegetation Management Association of Alberta - Seminar 2009

Thursday, March 12, 2009

12:15 to 1:00 pm
Lunch and Trade Show Browsing

1:00 to 2:30 pm
Len Ritter, PhD. Fellow, ATS, Executive Director Canadian Network
Toxicology Centres, Guelph
Evaluating Pesticide Cancer Risks: National and International

2:30 to 3:15 pm
Peter McLeod, CropLife Canada, Toronto
Urban Pesticide Regulatory Update and Industry Initiatives

3:15 to 3:45 pm
Annual General Meeting - Industrial Vegetation Management Association
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St. John's Daily Spray Advisory

My Past Articles

More enforcement needed for pesticide spray regulations
The Western Star (Corner Brook) - Final - 10-01-2002 - 413 words
Karen Griffin - Judie Squires says someone needs to patrol the companies that spray residential areas for pesticides because she's observed nine violations of the Environmental Protection Act in her Paradise neighborhood alone

Spray woes: Province falling down on monitoring pesticides
The Telegram (St. John's) - Final - 10-01-2002 - 253 words
Judie Squires - environment to become poisoned? A temporary ban on all residential pesticides has to be put into place, to protect us, our wildlife and our environment as a whole. Judie Squires Paradise

Government lax on cosmetic pesticide regulation: advocate
The Telegram (St. John's) - 08-28-2004 - 613 words
Stokes Sullivan, Deana - Despite increased awareness about adverse health effects from pesticides, Judie Squires, a member of the Pesticide Working Group of Newfoundland and Labrador, isn't optimistic the province will ban cosmetic use

Woman doesn't expect cosmetic pesticide ban any time soon
The Western Star (Corner Brook) - 08-30-2004 - 712 words
Stokes Sullivan, Deana - Despite increased awareness about adverse health effects from pesticides, Judie Squires, a member of the Pesticide Working Group of Newfoundland and Labrador, isn't optimistic that the province will ban the

Province lagging behind in pesticide control
The Telegram (St. John's) - 09-04-2005 - 496 words
Squires, Judie - it to do is to prohibit the cosmetic use of synthetic pesticides altogether in order to protect our citizens and the environment. Judie Squires writes from Portugal Cove-St. Philip's

The two sides to pesticide use
The Telegram (St. John's) - 07-16-2006 - 781 words
Judie Squires - health of your families. When Canada's most respected health authorities tell us pesticides threaten our health, we should all be listening. Judie Squires writes from Portugal Cove-St. Philip's

Inquiry implicates BTk
The Telegram (St. John's) - 06-24-2006 - 353 words
DEANA STOKES SULLIVAN - of trees. The live spores can be inhaled by humans and animals exposed to BT. Judie Squires, secretary of the Northeast Avalon Group of the Sierra Club, says despite claims that

Delayed pesticide laws 'disappointing'
The Telegram (St. John's) - 06-24-2006 - 833 words
DEANA STOKES SULLIVAN - at the end of this year. These products will only be sold to certified dealers. Judie Squires, secretary of the newly formed Northeast Avalon Group of the Sierra Club, isn't

Above Articles available through Trancontinental Newsnet

Time for provincial lawn pesticide regulation
The Telegram (St. John's) - 03-14-2009 - 419 words
pesticides. Please join me in lobbying our province for a pesticide ban Judie Squires Portugal Cove...

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