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June 18, A Trial Run

This is my first “blog.” I know others do it and I get the concept, but I’m not terribly technically savvy and I’ve put off jumping on the blog bandwagon. Maybe that’s why I gravitated to organic lawn care; it’s a straight-forward, common sense approach to landscaping.

In any event, this blog will be related to anything and everything to do with organic lawn care, tree care, landscape care and gardening in general. It will be very heavy on news items from across North America. My goal is to educate you about lawn care issues, but most of all to inspire you to take action in your own community. So, here goes. It was announced today that the province of New Brunswick in Canada will now join the provinces of Quebec and Ontario in an outright ban on lawn and garden pesticides that are still used here in the U.S. Here is an article that appeared today in the New Brunswick newspaper.


FREDERICTON (CNB) – The sale and use of more than 200 over-the-counter

lawn care pesticide products, and the use of all 2,4-D products on

domestic lawns in the province, will be banned by the Department of

Environment as of fall 2009.


In addition to the ban, Integrated Pest Management (IPM) accreditation

will be mandatory in February 2010 for those carrying out lawn care

services involving commercial-grade pesticides, and the 1974

Pesticides Control Act will be reviewed with a goal of further

reducing the unnecessary use of pesticides in the province within two



Environment Minister Roland Haché made the announcement today.


“During the 90-day consultation period on the subject of lawn care

pesticides which took place last summer and fall, more than 1,400 New

Brunswickers shared their comments, and it was clear that the use of

these pesticides is a concern,” said Haché.


New Brunswick is the first province in Atlantic Canada, and the third

in Canada, to adopt a comprehensive product ban on lawn care



“New Brunswickers shared their views with us, and as a government we

listened,” said Haché. “We are moving ahead with a ban on over-the-

counter pesticide products for homeowners and businesses alike.

Reducing the reliance on pesticides in the province will contribute to

a sustainable environment and a self-sufficient New Brunswick by



The product ban targets lawn care pesticide products on the retail

market that are most likely to be overused and misused. This includes

combination fertilizer/pesticide products, granular spreadable weed

killers, hose-end products, and lawn care pesticides that require

measuring, mixing or dilution by the homeowner.


The new IPM provisions will include requirements for businesses and

lawn care professionals to significantly reduce their reliance on

blanket treatment, and will instead promote spot treatment of problem



The requirements for IPM accreditation, which include training and

certification, will be included in all operating permits for

professionals and companies. Individuals who sell or use a banned

product, and professionals who fail to comply with the terms of IPM

accreditation, will be subject to prosecution under the Pesticides

Control Act.


Since the maintenance of specialty turf is the business of golf

courses, they will be able to use products containing 2,4-D, providing

that the products are applied within IPM provisions.


While pesticide treatment of public areas such as parks and sports

fields, as well as school yards and hospital grounds, would still be

possible, the new regulatory restrictions would apply.


These new changes will not affect the use of pesticides in

agricultural or forestry operations. From a municipal perspective, the

measures mean that pesticides will be regulated on a provincewide

basis, rather than at the community level.


“Our ban focuses on products that are misused and overused, and which

results in more pesticides being added to the environment than is

necessary,” said Haché. “In particular, the herbicide 2,4-D, which is

one of the most widely used lawn care pesticides, will be banned

because of its widespread use and its potential to be overused and

misused. As a government, we committed to making a decision in spring

of 2009 on the use of lawn care pesticides, and we believe that this

decision is in the best interest of all New Brunswickers. This ban

will contribute to an improved environment and quality of life for all

residents of the province.”


Last year, the departments of Environment, Health, Agriculture and

Aquaculture, and Local Government formed a working group to address

the issue of lawn care pesticides in the province.


In the coming weeks, information will be made available to the public

and stakeholders about the ban and how lawns can be managed without

relying on routine pesticide spraying.


Since the actions announced today can be implemented within current

legislation and regulations, the province is able to take immediate

steps to put these measures in place. By implementing the ban in the

fall of 2009, retailers and lawn care companies will have sufficient

notice to remove these products from their inventories in advance of

the 2010 lawn and gardening season.


The Department of Environment is responsible for the implementation of

the Clean Environment Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the

Pesticides Control Act, and the Beverage Containers Act through early

planning, pollution prevention initiatives and the administration of

permits and approvals.

About The Author

Paul Tukey

An international leader of the green movement, Mr. Tukey is a journalist, author, filmmaker, TV host, activist and award-winning public speaker, who is widely recognized as North America's leading advocate for landscape sustainability and toxic pesticide reduction strategies.

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