On November 20 2007, the following headline appeared on the Premier's website:
"MCGUINTY GOVERNMENT REDUCING ENVIRONMENTAL TOXIN"
Part of the election promise was "Legislation to ban the cosmetic use of pesticides to be introduced in the spring of 2008".
Between now and February 17, 2008 the Environmental Registry is accepting public comment on just how this legislation should be crafted.
The purpose of the proposal follows and contains a link to which comments can be submitted.
The purpose of the Government's proposal is to inform the public of the government's intent to implement a ban on the cosmetic use of pesticides, and solicit feedback from the public as the government considers policy options relating to the following:
1. Determining the Scope of the Ban
The proposed ban would apply to cosmetic uses of pesticides - those intended to improve the appearance of lawns, gardens, parks and school yards. Do you have any comments on the proposed scope?
The proposed ban would allow pesticides to be used in situations where it is warranted to help ensure public health (for example, to fight West Nile virus). Are there other situations where the use of pesticides should be allowed?
2. Sale of Cosmetic Pesticides
Other jurisdictions have banned the sale of pesticides used solely for cosmetic purposes while municipalities in Ontario have regulated the use of certain pesticides . Should the province consider banning the sale of those pesticides used solely for cosmetic purposes?
It is proposed that uses of pesticides for the purposes of agriculture and managed forests would be exempt, as they are already governed by stringent rules covering the storage and application of pesticides.
The government indicated that the focus of the ban would be on “towns and cities, and not on restrictions on rural residents”. Do you have any comments on this approach?
4. Exemptions for Golf Courses
It is proposed that golf courses would also be exempt, but would be required to develop plans to limit the environmental impact of pesticides. Should the government consider setting out minimum requirements for the plans developed by golf course owners/operators? What should the requirements include?
The government proposes to introduce legislation in the spring of 2008, with a phased-in implementation (e.g. 3 years).
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