Letter to the Editor:
Posted on 13 April 2011 by admin
Noxious weeds are a serious problem in many parts of British Columbia and can have a devastating impact on natural ecosystems.
Residents and professionals need access to tools to manage these and other damaging weeds before they compromise the health of precious green spaces.
That’s why Osoyoos City Council should think twice before enacting a pesticide ban which would take Health Canada-approved tools out of the hands of residents.
Pesticides used on lawns and gardens are designed as tools to address specific pest problems infesting valuable landscapes – they are not “cosmetic” at all.
In fact, pesticides are important tools for protecting city infrastructure, roadsides, parks and private properties.
Pesticides also help control threats to human health (such as rats and mosquitoes), they protect private and public properties from insect, weed and disease infestations and they help ensure that Canadians have a safe and affordable supply of food.
Jerilynn Maki of the Canadian Cancer Society said that using carcinogenic materials for cosmetic purposes is unacceptable.
No one disagrees with this sentiment, which is why before any pesticide can be sold in Canada it must undergo a rigorous scientific review and risk assessment by Health Canada.
In addition to a comprehensive set of over 200 tests, Health Canada also reviews all additional scientifically credible studies that exist.
Through this process, pesticides receive a greater breadth of scrutiny than any other regulated product and only those products that meet Health Canada’s strict health and safety standards are registered for sale and use.
An entire branch of Health Canada – with over 350 scientists – exists solely for the purpose of protecting humans and the environment from pesticides.
Have they been consulted or will Osoyoos city council rely exclusively on misinformation from organizations such as the Canadian Cancer Society whose expertise lies in an entirely different realm?
Osoyoos residents should have access to pesticides if they need to use them and public policy should be based on science and facts, not fear and rhetoric.
OSOYOOS TIMES-April 13, 2011