FREDERICTON - New Brunswick says it's 'very close' to introducing legislation which would ban the use of cosmetic pesticides, following months of studies and promise making.
It also follows the recent urging of Prince Edward Island Education Minister Richard Brown who wants all three Maritime provinces to stand united on such a ban
P.E.I. says a streamlined cosmetic pesticide ban between the three provinces would protect consumers from buying banned products in places nearby.
New Brunswick Minister Roland Haché said the provincial government has been working on its pesticide ban file for some time and that it would come before P.E.I. introduced its own ban this fall.
"We have committed to making an announcement concerning pesticides during this legislative sitting," he said. "We will do that."
Haché kept mum on specific details about what the ban would include.
"It will include pesticides, the banning of certain pesticides, etc.," he said. "We're very close to making that announcement. I consider it to be a very important file."
Nova Scotia Environment Minister David Morse wasn't available for comment yesterday. Department spokesman Brent Baxter said Nova Scotia was also investigating the merits of implementing a ban, but said it had no similar legislation coming down the line at this time.
"We're really exploratory at the moment," said Baxter, adding that it's not a forgone conclusion Nova Scotia would go ahead with a ban because others are.
Ontario and Quebec are currently the only provinces in Canada with such a ban.
Four New Brunswick towns have banned the use of cosmetic pesticides in their municipalities including Sackville, Shediac, Caraquet and St. Andrews. More than 100 communities nationally have similar bans.
An Ipsos-Reid poll conducted in December found that 79 per cent of New Brunswickers would support a provincial ban on non-essential pesticide use, while 75 per cent would support a ban on the sale of pesticides.
The poll, commissioned by the Canadian Cancer Society, the New Brunswick Lung Association, and the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, also found that 80 per cent of New Brunswickers believe cosmetic pesticides have the potential to pose a health risk to humans and the environment, while 85 per cent believe the chemicals could pose a risk to family pets.