Polical Parties pledging to take heed of medical communities advice regarding chemical pesticides and herbicides ...
GREEN PARTY OF ONTARIO PLAN, 2007
T H E O N TA R I O L I B E R A L P L A N , 2007
Nearly 80% of Ontario is covered by boreal forest – one of the largest wild ecosystems left on the planet. The boreal forest is home to countless wild creatures, is one of the largest reservoirs of fresh water in the world and has the ability to prevent climate change by storing carbon in its soils, trees and wetlands. The boreal forest accounts for 83% of Ontario’s natural carbon storage. Each hectare lost reduces this capacity by 177 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2).
With proper forest management and planning, Ontario has an opportunity that no longer exists in most of the world; we can protect a vast wilderness, while capturing a growing, higher-value green market for sustainable forest products.
To achieve these goals, the Green Party of Ontario will ...
- Ban the use of synthetic herbicides in forestry, except when required to control non-native invasive species for which no other controls exist.
Ontario-Wide Cosmetic Pesticides Ban OverdueToronto, Ont. – February 23, 2007 – The Ontario Liberals should immediately legislate a province-wide ban on synthetic lawn and garden pesticides, says Ontario Green Party Leader, Frank de Jong.
“Pickering and Oakville are the latest Ontario communities to ban cosmetic pesticides. Why must each municipality fight the same battle?” asks de Jong. “Everyone knows the harmful side effects of pesticide use outweigh any perceived benefits. McGuinty should just do the right thing.”
Across Canada, pesticide laws already protect 127 communities. Nineteen Ontario communities have banned pesticides, making life healthier for 4,377,584 people35.77 percent of the provincial population. Other communities are working toward pesticide bans. The Quebec government has banned all cosmetic use in that province.
The Green Party of Ontario is also calling on the provincial government to ban the use of commercial pesticides on golf courses. On average, about 5kg of pesticides are applied per hectare to golf courses each year (compared to 1.5kg per hectare to agricultural lands). These pesticides include the herbicide 2,4-D, a possible carcinogen; the fungicide chlorothalonil, a probable human carcinogen; and the insecticide chlorpyrifos (DursbanT), one of the leading causes of acute insecticidal poisoning incidents in the U.S. according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. A new study by the City of Ottawa reveals pesticides from residential lawns and golf courses have contaminated the Rideau River.
While public education campaigns can provide lawn and garden owners with valuable information on alternatives to using pesticides, recent studies suggest that education alone does not result in reduced pesticide use.
“We shouldn’t have to be spending our health care dollars on preventable illnesses,” says de Jong. “Ontario currently spends about $45 billion per year on health care each year. A pesticide ban could help save millions in health budgets through reduced asthma, cancer, nervous system disorders and other health-related problems.”
De Jong notes that natural lawn care is cost competitive with lawn care using pesticides. As well, natural lawn care is labour intensive, creating more jobs than pesticide-based lawn care. A Halifax study found that employment in the lawn care sector grew 40 percent after the pesticide ban.
“There is no reason why the Ontario government should not begin planning now to stimulate the use of alternative lawn care methods so all of Ontario’s children can look forward to a pesticide-free summer,” de Jong said.
The Green Party of Ontario advocates fiscally responsible, socially progressive, and environmentally aware government.
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MOVING FORWARD TOGETHER
The forestry sector has been hit hard by a number of factors, including a
To build on this progress, we will: