Monday, March 9, 2009

P.E.I. banning cosmetic pesticides...And More

Monday, March 9, 2009

CBC News

P.E.I. banning cosmetic pesticides

Islanders will have to revert to non-chemical methods of fighting
dandelions.Islanders will have to revert to non-chemical methods of
fighting dandelions. (CBC)

The P.E.I. government intends to ban the sale of cosmetic pesticides
starting in 2010.

Environment Minister Richard Brown told CBC News Friday that
regulations are being drawn up, and they will be straightforward.

"A ban is a ban. Those products will not be allowed to be sold on
P.E.I.," said Brown.

"We're not putting it in this year, because the owners of all the
stores and all the big shopping areas have purchased their inventory,
and we're saying we're not going to ban it for this year, but you're
on notice for next year."

Brown said Islanders were very clear about what they wanted, in their
presentations to a legislative committee looking into lawn chemicals
in 2007. The Island government is working with Ontario and New
Brunswick, as well, to come up with common regulations so people
aren't driving over the bridge to buy pesticides.

Katherine Dewar of the P.E.I. Environmental Health Co-operative, one
of the groups that's been pushing for a ban, welcomed the news.

"This is a no-brainer. You don't need cosmetic pesticides. There's no
rationale to say that they're needed, because you can have good lawns
without cosmetic pesticides," said Dewar.

"If you can take this kind of pollutant out of the air, the water and
the soil, it's a very easy thing for people to do. It's just the
sensible thing to do."

The new rules will be introduced during the upcoming sitting of the
legislature. Agricultural chemicals will not be included in the ban.

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/prince-edward-island/story/2009/03/09/pe-pesticide-ban.html

======================

March 9, 2009

The Fredericton Daily Gleaner

Just because I kill a mosquito...

Re: Letter published March 2 called

Try an honest exploration of facts

Lorne Hepworth is president of CropLife Canada, a company which
produces, promotes and sells chemical pesticides.

Some of them are agricultural pesticides which assist farmers in
producing food, and some are cosmetic pesticides which people use to
make their lawns look like astroturf.

I want a ban on the sale and use of cosmetic pesticides, as do many
New Brunswickers.

Hepworth seems to want the reading public to think that people like me
will seek a ban on agricultural pesticides next. How interesting.
That's like saying because I swatted and killed some mosquitoes last
summer, I'll soon go out and kill a human.

Repeatedly, individuals and health organizations have pointed out that
the struggle against cosmetic pesticide use is not related to
agricultural pesticide use, because the latter is essential for food
production.

It's time to stop listening to silly statements which are only scare
tactics. If you want to be scared, then think of the damage to all
creatures caused by the unnecessary deadly chemicals which he
promotes.

Merlene Crawford
Oromocto, N.B.

http://dailygleaner.canadaeast.com/search/article/596628

======================

March 9, 2009

The Cornwall Standard Freeholder

We're flushing the future of trees down the drain every day

By ELAINE KENNEDY

I was not surprised to see the letter to the editor from the President
of CropLife Canada who thinks the Ontario Government's ban on the
cosmetic use of pesticides is a bad move.

I was sorry that he had to include the idea about agriculture.

I thought that those of us who believe in the ban for cosmetic uses,
had finally persuaded farmers that we were not out to attack them.

So I decided to google CropLife Canada and found that "CropLife Canada
is the trade association representing the manufacturers, developers
and distributors of plant science innovations -pest control products
and plant biotechnology -for use in agriculture, urban and public
health settings."

Their mission is: "to support innovative and sustainable agriculture
in Canada, in co-operation with others, by building trust and
appreciation for plant science innovations."

Their vision is: "Healthier living through excellence in plant science
innovations."

Then I checked the members of their executive committee and board of
directors.

If you think I might be biased that this company has a vested interest
in pesticide use, please check their website.

http://www.standard-freeholder.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=1468613

======================

For immediate release
March 4, 2009
250+ PESTICIDES BANNED FOR COSMETIC USES
McGuinty Government’s Pesticide Ban Takes Effect April 22
NEWS

Ontario’s cosmetic pesticides ban takes effect April 22, 2009.

The ban protects Ontario families and children from the unnecessary
risks of cosmetic pesticides by only allowing the use of certain lower-
risk pesticides for controlling weeds and pests in lawns and gardens.

The ban prohibits the sale and use of pesticides for cosmetic purposes
on lawns, gardens, parks and school yards, and includes many
herbicides, fungicides and insecticides. Over 250 products will be
banned for sale and more than 80 pesticide ingredients will be banned
for cosmetic uses.

There are exceptions for public health or safety reasons such as
fighting West Nile Virus, killing stinging insects like wasps, or
controlling poison ivy and other plants poisonous to the touch. Other
exceptions include agriculture and forestry.

The ban takes the place of existing municipal pesticide bylaws,
establishing one clear set of easy-to-understand rules, and providing
certainty for businesses operating in different areas of the province.

QUOTES

“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

QUICK FACTS

* Ontario’s pesticide rules are outlined in the Pesticides Act and
Ontario Regulation 63/09.
* According to the Organic Landscape Alliance, chemical-dependent
lawns are highly susceptible to pests and diseases, whereas a healthy
lawn can survive several weeks in a dormant state, is less likely to
be damaged by pests and is less affected by drought, temperature
extremes and general wear and tear.

LEARN MORE

* What are the regulatory requirements for retailers, the
landscape industry and others? What are the rules for public health
or safety, agriculture, forestry and golf courses?
* Get some tips on caring for lawns and gardens without the use of
harsh chemicals at the Ministry of the Environment’s web site above.

-30-
Contacts:
Contact information for the general public:
Kate Jordan, Ministry of the Environment, 416-314-6666
416-325-4000 or 1-800-565-4923/
www.ontario.ca/environment

http://www.ene.gov.on.ca/en/news/2009/030401.php


March 4, 2008
Ontario’s Cosmetic Pesticides Ban

Ontario’s cosmetic pesticides ban will take effect April 22, 2009. The
requirements of the ban are detailed in Ontario Regulation 63/09 and
the Pesticides Act, which was amended by the Cosmetic Pesticides Ban
Act, 2008.

The provincial ban supersedes local municipal pesticides bylaws to
create one clear, transparent and understandable set of rules across
the province.

Pesticides cannot be used for cosmetic purposes on lawns, vegetable
and ornamental gardens, patios, driveways, cemeteries, and in parks
and school yards. There are no exceptions for pest infestations
(insects, fungi or weeds) in these areas, as lower risk pesticides,
biopesticides and alternatives to pesticides exist. More than 250
pesticide products are banned for sale and over 80 pesticide
ingredients are banned for cosmetic uses.

Exceptions

* Public health or safety: Pesticides can be used to control
plants that are poisonous to the touch, such as poison ivy; insects
that bite, sting, are venomous or are disease carrying, like
mosquitoes; and animals, insects or plants that may cause damage to a
structure or infrastructure, such as termites.
* Natural resources: There is an exception, with Ministry of
Natural Resources approval, to control invasive species that may be
detrimental to health, the environment or the economy, or to protect a
native plant, animal or a rare ecosystem.
* Golf courses are conditionally excepted from the ban provided
they follow tough new rules. They must become accredited for
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) by an approved accreditation body.
IPM uses a variety of tools, including best practices, mechanical and
biological methods, along with pesticides when necessary, to manage
pest populations. Golf courses must prepare an annual report on how
they minimized their pesticide use and make the report accessible to
the public. Also, they must hold a public meeting annually to present
the report.
* Sports fields are allowed a short term exception from the ban to
host national or international level sports competitions. Written
approval for the exception must be granted by the Minister of the
Environment. Once the event concludes, the use of pesticides must
end. Areas such as lawns and gardens around the sports fields are not
excepted from the ban.
* Specialty turf: Pesticides can be used to maintain specialty
turf used for lawn bowling, cricket, lawn tennis and croquet if
certain conditions are met. Areas such as lawns and gardens around the
specialty turf are not excepted from the ban. IPM and annual reporting
conditions, similar to those imposed on golf courses, must be
followed.
* Trees: Since trees are so important to protecting our climate,
licensed exterminators can use conventional pesticides with the
written opinion of a tree care professional that states that the use
of the pesticide is necessary to protect the health of the tree.
Homeowners and licensed exterminators can also buy and use
biopesticides and lower risk pesticides (e.g., Btk - a biopesticide
sprayed over Ontario cities for Gypsy moth control) to care for trees
without requiring an opinion from a tree care professional.
* Agriculture: The use of pesticides is necessary for agriculture
from an economic and operational perspective. Ontario farmers already
have stringent rules on the use, handling, storage and application of
pesticides, and these rules will continue. The exception does not
apply to a farmer’s household vegetable garden and lawn.
* Forestry: The use of pesticides in forestry is essential to
protect trees from pests, and to control competing vegetation.
Ontario’s forestry workers must follow stringent rules on the use,
handling, storage and application of pesticides. The exception applies
to a range of forestry activities including harvest and reforestation.
* Public works: Under the health or safety exception, pesticides
are allowed to be used to maintain safe conditions, and the security
of and emergency access to public works. Public works include
highways, railways, power works, gas works, water works and other
utilities, transit/transportation corridors and the perimeter of
nuclear facilities. The exception does not apply to the use of a
pesticide on a portion of a highway to which pedestrians have access
on a regular basis or where the public is invited to stop including
picnic and rest areas.

Notice Signs

Homeowners can apply biopesticides or lower risk pesticides to control
weeds and other pests on lawns, gardens, driveways and other areas
around the home. However, if licensed exterminators use a lower risk
pesticide or biopesticide, the exterminator must post a green notice
sign on the lawn. This sign makes it clear that the exterminator is
not using an illegal pesticide and satisfies the public’s right to
know about the use of a pesticide. For example, if an exterminator
treated a lawn with corn gluten meal to suppress weeds, he/she would
need to post a green sign.

Pesticide Storage and Fire Department Notification

The ministry has harmonized storage and fire department notification
requirements for manufacturers with existing requirements for
operators (including commercial lawn care companies) and vendors.These
requirements ensure that local fire departments know where pesticides
are stored to protect human health and the environment.

Pesticide Classification

To support the cosmetic pesticides ban, a pesticide classification
system consisting of eleven classes of pesticides has been
established. Please also refer to the Pesticide Classification
Guideline for Ontario for the criteria for each class of pesticide.

* Class 1 are manufacturing concentrates used in the manufacture
of a pesticide product.
* Classes 2, 3 and 4 are commercial or restricted pesticides that
can continue to be used by farmers and licensed exterminators for non-
banned uses. If the pesticide contains a Class 9 pesticide, it may
only be used for an exception to the ban (e.g., agriculture, forestry,
golf courses).
* Classes 5 and 6 pesticides can be used by homeowners and include
biopesticides and lower risk pesticides allowed for cosmetic uses.
* Class 7 includes dual-use pesticides (i.e. indoor/outdoor uses).
Such pesticides will only be allowed to be used for non-cosmetic
purposes. For example, they can be used indoors to kill pests or
outdoors for public health or safety reasons, but cannot be used
outdoors to kill weeds. Retailers must give information to notify
purchasers that only certain uses of these pesticides are legal. In
two years’ time, consumers will also not have ready access to these
products, and continue to receive notification about the legal uses.
* Class 8 are banned domestic products. (e.g., pesticide-
fertilizer combination products, weed and insect control products for
lawns and gardens).
* Class 9 lists ingredients in pesticide products. These
ingredients are banned for cosmetic use. Commercial or restricted
products containing these ingredients may still be used by farmers or
licensed exterminators for exceptions under the ban.
* Class 10 pesticides are ingredients in pesticide products. These
are the only ingredients that may be used to control plants that are
poisonous to the touch under the public health or safety exception.
* Class 11 lists ingredients that are biopesticides or lower risk
pesticides. Licensed exterminators that use Class 11 pesticides are
required to post a green notice sign to provide public notice of the
use of these pesticides.

-30-
Contacts:
Contact information for the general public:
Kate Jordan, Communications Branch, 416-314-6666 ontario.ca/
environment-news

Disponible en français

http://www.ene.gov.on.ca/en/news/2009/030401mb.php

======================

March 05, 2009

Pesticide Action Network Updates Service (PANUPS)
A Weekly News Update on Pesticides, Health and Alternatives

Ontario bans 2,4-D for landscape use

According to the Canadian Press, on March 4 the Ontario government
confirmed sweeping new regulations banning 85 pesticides for lawn and
landscape applications. "Environment Minister John Gerretsen says the
new regulations will prohibit the sale and use of 2,4-D in its
concentrated form, despite a NAFTA challenge from its manufacturer"
last August by Dow AgroSciences. Gideon Forman of the Canadian
Association of Physicians for the Environment told the Toronto Star
the 85 pesticides are "found in roughly 250 products" used for
cosmetic purposes. The ban -- the latest step in the provincial
Cosmetic Pesticides Ban Act, passed last June -- is slated to take
effect on Earth Day, April 22. Retailers will be immediately required
to store and display pesticides behind the counter, and by 2011 they
will have to notify customers of the new limitations on use. Despite
industry resistance to the ban, many landscapers are already switching
to organic and least-toxic alternatives. Still, some health
professionals and activists feel that the ban doesn't go far enough,
as it does not stop owners of golf courses, farms or managed forests
from spraying pesticides. Dow's announcement that it might file a $2
million suit against the federal government under NAFTA to preserve
2,4-D has not dissuaded Canadian local and provincial governments from
expanding cosmetic-use pesticide bans. "Gerretsen says he won't back
down from a ban that protects the health and safety of Ontario
residents just because there's a threat of a potential lawsuit." In
December in the U.S., Beyond Pesticides and NRDC filed a petition with
the EPA to cancel registration of 2,4-D, the herbicide that was one of
two Dow chemicals in Agent Orange and is found in popular "weed and
feed" products across North America.

http://www.panna.org/resources/panups/panup_20090305

======================

Praise and thanks for Rachel’s News

Today, February 26, brings the 1,000th issue of Rachel’s Democracy and
Health News. Its publisher, Peter Montague, co-founded the
Environmental Research Foundation (ERF) in 1980 and is closing its
doors this month. “Our main goal,” Peter reflects, “was to build a
lifeboat so that people could see what's possible, abandon a sinking
ship, and make the necessary societal shift to protect the future we
all want for our children.” Over the years he dissected the risk
assessment regime to reveal in plain language how it protects the
chemical industry by "tolerating” harm, most often at greatest cost to
communities of color. Peter has been an articulate champion of the
burgeoning grassroots toxics movement and helped lay the intellectual
foundations for the precautionary principle. Rachel’s News brought
intelligent, radical social analysis distilled into essential
information for action. At first Rachel’s arrived in the mail of
public interest groups and activists each week. The November 1986
premier issue presented data from the Geological Surveys in Iowa and
Kansas showing that “Pesticides Pose Greater Threat To U.S. Drinking
Water Supplies Than Factories And Toxic Dumps”. As Peter moved to the
Internet, Rachel’s expanded to some 10,000 loyal subscribers and many,
many more to whom this vital resource was redistributed. Mary O’Brien,
former board president of Pesticide Action Network North America (and
author of Making Better Environmental Decisions; an alternative to
risk assessment, MIT Press, 2000), writes: “Rachel's has been a MODEL
of science explained; history remembered; alternatives explored; B.S.
debunked. And all without too many words. Peter is so good, it's our
responsibility to carry on.”

http://www.panna.org/resources/panups/panup_20090226

======================

March 9, 2009

The Montreal Gazette

Cancer and the environment

Joanne Brak's March 4 letter, "Blame genetics, not lifestyle, for
cancer," misses the mark when it suggests heredity is the main culprit
for the rise in breast cancer rates.

Only about five to 10 per cent of all breast cancers are determined by
the so-called breast cancer genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2. On the other hand,
The Gazette's March 1 editorial, "Prevention might be the best cure
for cancer," places much of the blame for the high incidence of cancer
on lifestyles, and lauds the fact that early detection has cut the
mortality rate of cancer.

But early detection still means you get the disease, and in greater
numbers. From the 1950s to the 1990s, breast-cancer rates increased
about 60 per cent; prostate cancer about 200 per cent, and testicular
cancer rates for men ages 28 to 35 have gone up 300 per cent.

During that same period we have seen a tremendous increase in
industrialization and with that rapid growth we have been subjected to
environmental degradation and the accumulation of mutagens,
carcinogens, endocrine disrupters and other toxic materials in our
air, water, and food supplies.

Obviously we all would like to see a cure, a magic bullet that would
eliminate this disease. But to talk about an increasing cure rate
tends to draw us away from a major problem, the environment.

Being content with lower mortality rates suggests that we accept the
fact that cancer has to happen, and happen more frequently. Prevention
should mean that we look at factors that cause the disease and also
focus on removing as many environmental poisons as possible.

Max Beer
Côte St Luc

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette

http://www.montrealgazette.com/opinion/letters/Cancer+environment/1368559/story.html

======================

03/06/2009

Mercury News

San Jose's lawn crew: They're cute, they're hungry and they're working
for you

By Linda Goldston

They work sunup to sundown, drop to the ground for their breaks and
never sneak away to Starbucks. And some of them even give birth to new
workers on the spot.

But a good work ethic is only one of the benefits of the newest
additions to San Jose's Green Vision. Nine hundred sheep and 100 goats
have been on the job grazing around the San Jose/Santa Clara Water
Pollution Control Plant since February, avoiding the use of dozens of
pounds of herbicides.

"The joke in the office is you know they're working hard because their
heads are always down," said Jennifer Garnett, a spokeswoman for the
city's environmental services.

By having the sheep and goats do what they do naturally, the city also
is helping to diminish pollution of waterways because there is no
herbicide runoff where the woolly grazers are working. And, they're
able to get the job done without the use of gas-powered mowers, one of
the key goals of San Jose's Green Vision — reducing the use of
nonrenewable energy.

For now, the sheep and goats are grazing about 400 acres around the
water pollution control plant on Zanker Road, but plans call for their
services at several other locations this year, including a portion of
Alum Rock Park. At their current location, there is no safe place for
the public to pull over and watch the grazers, who will be easier to
observe at Alum Rock.

The work crew already has grown by several dozen at no extra charge to
the city. Twenty
Advertisement
baby goats — called kids — and 60 lambs have been born since February
and 50 more births are expected. The babies are on the job within days
and learn how and what to graze from their mothers.

Doing the job the natural way costs a bit more, but city officials are
pleased with the results. Having the weeds and grassland mowed at the
plant location the traditional way, including the use of herbicides,
cost the city $24,000 last year. This year, using the sheep and goats
will cost about $35,000 for the 400-acre site around the water
pollution control plant, said Cheryl Wessling, marketing manager for
San Jose's Environmental Services Department.

"The city is saying we're willing to make additional investments in
exchange for avoiding environmental impacts," she said.

The cuteness factor didn't figure into the calculations for the cost,
but it was prevalent along Zanker Road on Friday afternoon. Several of
the baby goats were playing king of the mountain on a concrete slab,
butting heads and trying to push one another off, and several were
racing around, apparently for the sheer fun of it.

"The little ones walking around are less than a month old," said Jared
Lewis, resource manager and grazing specialist with Living Systems
Land Management of San Francisco, the company that provides the sheep
and goats.

Lewis said the goats eat some things the sheep won't touch, such as
poison hemlock, one of the weeds on the site.

"Goats devour it," he said. "Goats have a bitter palate; sheep prefer
sweeter tastes."

To make sure all is well with the sheep and goats, there are two full-
time shepherds (a third will be added soon). Border collies also are
on call if the sheep and goats need to be moved and three larger dogs
— Travis, an Anatolian shepherd, and two Great Pyrenees, Fluffy and
Chica — guard and protect the crew when they work in areas known for
predators.

Both sheep and goats eat — or work — in four-hour cycles, Lewis said.
"Every four hours they will take a nap" so they can digest their food,
but they work as long as there is light.

The goats and sheep will live on Zanker Road lands for at least a year
and their grazing is expected to improve the habitat for the
endangered burrowing owls that live in the open space around the
plant.

"When you're grazing, you're impacting the land in a different way,"
Lewis said. "One aspect is for fire protection. With grazing, you're
removing fuels. With mowing, you can actually increase them."

Not to mention, there's nothing cute about lawn mowers.

Contact Linda Goldston at lgoldston@mercurynews.com or (408) 920-5862.

http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_11856391?source=most_emailed

======================
Warning Industry Propaganda Below
======================

March 9, 2009

The Montreal Gazette

Fair play for pesticides

Re: "City adds support to pesticide foes" (Gazette, March 4).

Last May's decision by Health Canada's Pest Management Regulatory
Agency was unambiguous: "2,4-D can be used safely when used according
to label directions." This rigorous scientific assessment concurs with
those of other health-protection agencies, including the European
Commission, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the World
Health Organization.

Indeed, the Quebec government determined there was no scientific basis
for the ban in 2003 and announced that it was placing 2,4-D on the
schedule of prohibited pesticides only pending the outcome of the
science-based assessments by the PMRA and EPA.

Now that these assessments are in, Quebec must keep its commitment.
Decisions about pesticides should be informed by scientific criteria,
not political opportunism.

James W. Gray
Executive Director
Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data
Kansas City, Mo.

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette

http://www.montrealgazette.com/opinion/letters/Fair+play+pesticides/1368563/story.html

======================

Dow Chemical Says Talks With Rohm & Haas ‘Going Well’

By Jack Kaskey

March 8 (Bloomberg) -- Dow Chemical Co. said negotiations to acquire
Rohm & Haas Co. under new terms are “going well” and more information
will be available tomorrow morning, just as the companies are set to
face off in a trial over the stalled merger.

“Settlement talks are going on right now. They are going well,” Matt
Henson, an outside spokesman for Dow Chemical with Golin Harris
agency, said in a telephone interview. “We’ll have something to tell
you in the morning.”

Dow, the largest U.S. chemical maker, agreed in July to pay $78 a
share, or $15.3 billion, in cash for Philadelphia-based Rohm & Haas to
gain more profitable specialty chemicals used in paints and
electronics. Henson said Dow wants Rohm & Haas to accept something
other than an all-cash deal so the company can maintain investment-
grade credit ratings.

“The right deal is not $78 a share all cash,” Henson said.

Emily Riley, a Rohm & Haas spokeswoman, said she had no update on the
talks.

Dow Chief Executive Officer Andrew Liveris has said closing the merger
without better financing or asset sales would threaten the combined
company’s survival amid flagging chemical markets and the loss of
funds from an aborted Kuwaiti venture. A trial is set to begin
tomorrow to decide a lawsuit filed by Rohm & Haas seeking to force Dow
to complete the takeover.

Dow, based in Midland, Michigan, said on March 6 that lenders agreed
to amend a bridge loan for the merger, giving the company until April
2011, or an extra year, to pay off $8 billion of the borrowings. The
company has said it didn’t complete the transaction as planned in
January because it needed new terms from Citigroup Inc. and other
lenders after the joint venture with Kuwait collapsed, depriving Dow
of $9 billion.

Amended Loan

The total amended loan is $12.5 billion, $4.5 billion of which must be
repaid in one year, the company said in a March 6 filing. In addition
to the bridge loan, Dow has arranged a $3 billion equity investment
from Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and a $1 billion
investment by the Kuwait Investment Authority.

On Feb. 12, Dow Chemical cut its dividend by 64 percent, the first
reduction in company history, to save $1 billion a year.

Dow’s commercial paper and short-term credit ratings were lowered on
March 6 by Standard & Poor’s because of concern the company’s finances
might have been hurt if it were forced to acquire Rohm & Haas under
the original terms.

Dow’s corporate credit and senior unsecured debt ratings of BBB, two
levels above junk, may be lowered if the merger closes on the original
terms or if the company is found liable for a large legal judgment,
S&P said.

Shares Tumbled

Dow’s stock price has tumbled 79 percent since July 9, the day before
the Rohm & Haas acquisition was announced, while Rohm & Haas has
gained 42 percent. Dow, which was three times Rohm & Haas’s size by
market capitalization, is now valued at about half its acquisition
target.

Rohm & Haas solicited bids from Dow and BASF SE after the Haas family,
which controls 32 percent of company shares, decided to diversify its
investments. Dow’s bid topped BASF’s $75-a-share offer by $3 a share.

“We expect a settlement this weekend because on Monday the trial
begins,” Amit Shabi, a partner at Geneva-based Bernheim Dreyfus & Co.,
which owns Rohm & Haas shares, said March 6. “Extending the bank loans
for a year will give them time to sell assets and do it in a less
distressed way.”

Liveris has said he may sell assets including the company’s Dow
AgroSciences unit, which makes pesticides and develops genetically
modified seeds, to help fund the buyout. Syngenta AG, the world’s
biggest maker of farm chemicals, said this month it would consider
buying the unit. Dow AgroSciences had $4.5 billion in sales last year
and is worth $5 billion to $7 billion, HSBC analyst Hassan Ahmed said
this month.

Kuwait Venture

In December, Kuwait’s Petrochemical Industries Co. canceled an
agreement to buy a 50 percent stake in Dow’s plastics unit. Dow is
seeking more than $2.5 billion in damages from Kuwait for the failed
venture.

Dow said it is grappling with the worst markets for its products in a
generation. Fourth-quarter sales fell 23 percent as sales volumes and
prices plunged, prompting the company to reduce factory operating
rates to the lowest in more than 25 years.

Dow said in December it is eliminating about 5,000 jobs, or 11 percent
of its workforce, permanently closing 20 facilities and idling 180
plants. The contractor workforce is being cut by 6,000. Demand for
most products probably will fall in 2009, Liveris said.

Dow, founded in 1897, makes 3,200 products, including plastics,
pesticides and Styrofoam, at more than 150 production sites in 37
countries.

Possible Settlement

Shabi said he’d prefer Rohm & Haas settle the lawsuit, even though the
company probably would prevail at the trial in Delaware Chancery
Court.

“I thought Rohm & Haas’s case was very strong, but there’s always
risk,” Larry Hamermesh, a professor at the Widener University Law
School and an expert on Delaware corporate law, said March 6 in a
telephone interview. “For anybody, a settlement offers more certainty
than trying to roll the dice of litigation.”

Recent rulings in Delaware, such as cases involving Hexion Specialty
Chemicals Inc. and Tyson Foods Inc., suggest judges are more willing
to order the kind of specific performance Rohm & Haas sought in its
lawsuit, Hamermesh said.

In September, Delaware Chancery Court Judge Stephen Lamb ruled
Columbus, Ohio-based Hexion didn’t have the grounds to cancel its $6.5
billion offer for Huntsman Corp. because of a slump in the chemical
markets. The ruling was short of ordering Hexion to complete the deal.

In the Tyson Foods case in 2001, Chancery Court Judge Leo Strine Jr.
ordered that company to complete its $4.7 billion acquisition of IBP
Inc. even after claims that financial problems voided the agreement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jack Kaskey in New York at
jkaskey@bloomberg.net.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=a60zGKjvZcMg&refer=home#

======================

March 7, 2009

The Sudbury Star

Sudbury Business: 'I have tons of it' - Retailer reeling from
pesticide ban

By DARREN MACDONALD

Ontario's ban on pesticides may be good for the environment, but some
local retailers say it's doing nothing for the health of their
businesses.

Lonnie Doherty, manager of Walden Home Hardware, says he has no
problem with the ban itself. It's the way the province is implementing
the new rules that's causing him problems.

On Wednesday, the province passed a law detailing exactly which
products are on the banned list. What's causing problems for Doherty
and other retailers is the fact the ban on use and sale comes into
effect April 22, giving retailers weeks to get rid of their inventory.

"I don't have a problem with the pesticide ban," he said. "But right
now I have tons of it in stock."

He said when the ban was announced last summer, the province wouldn't
set a time-line on when it would come into effect, or give retailers a
definitive list of exactly what products were being banned.

So stores didn't know how much time they had, and many expected the
ban would be phased in over 1-3 years. That it would be just weeks was
a shock.

"So if I sold it to someone before April 22, they couldn't even use it
after then. That's craziness ... And what am I supposed to do with the
stuff I have left?"

Kate Jordan, a spokesperson with the Ministry of the Environment, said
Friday that the ban should come as no surprise to anyone in Ontario.

"The government signalled its intentions last spring," Jordan said.

Since the act was introduced in June 2008, she said widespread
consultations have been held with retailers, the public and industry
on just what the province had planned.

The ministry has consistently said the ban was coming into effect this
spring, Jordan said.

"So this shouldn't come as a surprise to any retailer."

But Doherty said when he put the question to ministry officials, he
was basically told it was his problem.

"They expect us to pay to have it taken away and destroyed," he said.
"It will be up to us to find a way to legally dispose of it."

Some of the people he has talked to privately at the ministry have
told him the way the ban is being implemented makes no sense -- and is
politically, rather than environmentally, motivated. He suspects the
province is eager to make itself look green on Earth Day, which falls
on April 22 this year.

"Banning it doesn't make the pesticide disappear. It just puts
independent retailers in a terrible spot."

Bigger chains, such as Home Depot and Canadian Tire, can send their
stock to stores in other provinces. That's not an option for
independents like him.

"There's nothing I can do ... Our bottom line is razor thin to begin
with and this makes it worse."

But Jordan said of the 11 classes of pesticides on the banned list,
many can be used until 2011, and those can still be sold and used.

Plus, golf courses and the agricultural industry can still use the
pesticides, so they can be legally sold to them after April 22.

"We have said since June 2008 that we wanted to protect the health and
safety of Ontarians by banning pesticides used solely for cosmetic
purposes.

Pat Morrow, who owns Pro Hardware stores in Capreol and Val Caron,
says he sold off most of his pesticides since he heard the ban was
coming last year.

"So I don't have too much left."

He agrees with Doherty that the ban is politically motivated. For
example, the active ingredient in Killex is being banned, even though
it's not technically a pesticide.

"It's like a steroid for dandelions," he said. Instead of lasting for
months, the chemical makes dandelions last for just 8-10 days. So
banning it makes no sense, Morrow said.

In a Canadian Press story Thursday, Ontario Environment Minister John
Gerretsen said the new regulations will prohibit the sale and use of
2,4- D in its concentrated form, despite a NAFTA challenge from its
manufacturer.

Dow AgroSciences, a unit of Dow Chemical, filed a $2-million notice of
action against the federal government last August.

It alleges that Quebec's ban on 2,4-D violates Canada's obligations
under NAFTA because it prohibits a product without any scientific
basis.

Gerretsen says he won't back down from a ban that protects the health
and safety of Ontario residents just because there's a threat of a
potential lawsuit.

Ontario passed legislation last year banning the sale and use of
pesticides with few exceptions, such as golf courses and agricultural
purposes.

On the Web: www.ene.gov. on.ca/en/land/p esticides/class-pesticides.
php

http://www.thesudburystar.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=1467889

Walden Home Hardware
130 Regional Road 24
Lively ON, P3Y 1J2
Phone #: 705-692-3697
Fax #: 705-692-4247

An EarthCare Sudbury Retail / Consumer Conservation Program
The Home Depot. •. The Notre Dame Boys. •. The Sony Store. •. TIM-BR
Mart. •. Union Gas. •. Val Est Pro Hardware. •. Walden Home
Hardware ...
www.greatersudbury.ca/content/div_councilagendas/documents/Efficient%20Sudbury%20Council%20Presentation.pdf

======================

For Immediate Release - March 4, 2009 For Immediate Release

International Speakers to focus on new farming poll and new strategies
for farming in the future

New research on food, farming and farmers unveiled at farm speakers’
forum

GUELPH, ONTARIO – New information showing how Canadians view farming
and how farmers can lead our economic recovery and feed the world will
be released at a meeting in Guelph next week.

Two farm organizations, the Ontario Farm Animal Council (OFAC) and
Agricultural Groups Concerned about Resources and the Environment
(AGCare), will co-host a thought-provoking speakers’ forum on
Thursday, March 12 that will feature three keynote presentations.
(Click here for complete agenda and registration form)

“Our three speakers will focus on changing attitudes and changing
science that affects how we farm and eat in Canada and around the
world,” says Crystal Mackay, Executive Director of OFAC.

Featured Speakers:

1:15 p.m. Colin Siren, a Senior Researcher with Ipsos Reid will
release the results of a Canada-wide poll on public attitudes towards
food, farming and farmers.

1:45 p.m. Activist targets vary from animals to pesticides to
biotechnology and food choices. Dan Murphy, journalist and
agricultural consultant from Washington State will talk about the
tactics that agriculture can apply to communicating about the issues
of the day.

2:45 p.m. Bryan Weech, Director of Livestock with the World Wildlife
Fund (WWF) in Texas will bring a different perspective to the
discussion of how farmers can feed the world. Weech will focus on
feeding more people using less land, less water and fewer resources.
Is it possible to achieve this while preserving wildlife habitats and
rural landscapes?

WHERE AND WHEN:

OFAC-AGCare annual general meeting and speaker forum
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Guelph Place, 492 Michener Road, Guelph, Ontario
Annual Meetings: 9:30 a.m. to noon
Speakers’ Forum: 1:15 to 3:35 p.m.

Media availability at the event follows the speeches.

-- 30 --
For further information, requests and inquiries contact:
Wallace Pidgeon, OFAC/AGCare Media Specialist
416-255-0176 wallace@agcare.org


The Ontario Farm Animal Council is a non-profit education organization
representing Ontario’s 40,000 livestock and poultry farmers and
related agri-businesses. OFAC is the voice for animal agriculture,
providing a coordinated effort on issues related to animal agriculture
and food production including farm animal care, environment, new
technology and food safety.

AGCare, Agricultural Groups Concerned About Resources and the
Environment, is a coalition of farm organizations committed to
communicating about agriculture and the environment. AGCare is the
voice of Ontario’s 45,000 farmers who grow fruit, vegetables, and
field crops on environmental issues.

http://www.ofac.org/news/2009/OFACAGMnoticeone.php Best Blogger Tips
  • Stumble This Post
  • Save Tis Post To Delicious
  • Share On Reddit
  • Fave On Technorati
  • Buzz This Post
  • Tweet This Post
  • Digg This Post
  • Share On Facebook
Blog Gadgets

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...

Online Marketing - OnToplist.com