Share The Wealth by Chris Gupta
May 14, 2006

Notes to the ETC Pesticide meeting (2006/05/24)

The following note is an adaptation of a 5 minute address prepared for presentation to the city of London, Ont Canada for May 24th, 2006. Those in the city and area are encouraged to attend, more details are at: Others may find this information useful to use for their own efforts to curtail pesticide use.

Also "Irene Mathyssen (London-Fanshawe MP) and Bill Armstrong (Ward 4 London City Councillor) have created an online petition in support of Bill C-225. The bill would place a moratorium on the cosmetic use of pesticides until products are proven safe and approved by a committee of Parliament. The full-text of the bill is posted here.

The petition is posted at: and it will be tabled in Parliament and copied to London City Council.

Sam Trosow
(for the London Coalition Against Pesticides)"


It has been over eight years since it was recommended that the City pass a pesticide by-law. Other municipalities, such as, Hudson in Quebec, Toronto, Halifax, Peterbrough fought for the health of their citizens. Even with such precedents our City has been throwing road block after road block against banning pesticides. The Environment and Transportation Committee (ETC) has been going round and round on this issue meanwhile everybody is unnecessarily being exposed to this toxin.

First the City hid behind its Legal Department, which opined the municipality lacked the legal authority. Now they are on "the pesticides have been tested and approved and safe" bandwagon and are continually looking for more loop holes to prevent/delay passage of such a law.

If the public meeting does not produce the desired result, then it is ignored and, another one is scheduled add infinitum until they get the desired result hence this 3rd one now with the usurped Health Canada doing their dirty bidding.

Relevant governmental bodies including the City keep protecting the short sighted pesticide industry at the expense of their constituents. An industry which in turn is so beholden to the chemicals, that they themselves are passing up a golden opportunity to increase their own business and safety of their employees by not adopting ecological friendly methods. The precautionary principle is continuously ignored regardless of mounting data on health effects of pesticides.

Johanne Gélinas - author of the fourth audit of federal pesticide management (1) has indicated that the federal government has long known about many of these problems so there is nothing new that is not already known. She had this to say:

..."Every pesticide that has been re-evaluated has either had its legal uses further restricted or has been pulled off the shelves because it has been found to pose unacceptable risks."...

"The audit found instances of temporary registrations issued despite lack of information on impacts on children's central nervous systems. More than half of all recent registrations are temporary. Worse, they're frequently renewed; some have been extended five times."

As if this was not enough there are no health tracking database but the continued renewals of temporary registrations continue!

The industry supported by the city continue to tell us that pesticides are safe because they have been tested by the government.

Just look at the recent example, February 21, 2005, regarding the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) interim announcement that the pesticide 2,4-D Herbicide. (2) Suddenly this, previously unsafe, pesticide can now be used safely on lawns and turf when label directions are followed.

All the well known tricks for cooking the books are applied here:

.....Problems include: industry-provided, secret studies that are not open for peer review, rather than systematically reviewing primary literature.

...Secret animal studies supplied by the industry, that of course, do not demonstrate carcinogenicity...

....Dioxin contamination has been problematic in the past, but since 1983 the federal government has been assured by the manufacturers that it is no longer a problem and no further monitoring has been carried out....

Any thing teratogenic (meaning: relating to, or causing malformations of an embryo or fetus) is sure to be a carcinogen. 2,4D is not safe even when applied as recommended. Period. And who follows instructions when some people can't read English and most think more is always better.

...PMRA has been derelict in its duty to compile relevant information and to weigh it dispassionately....

"This should be grounds for major changes within the PMRA and Canada's regulatory regime for toxic chemicals. It is certainly is grounds for cosmetic pesticide bylaws, and for Quebec to maintain its Pesticide Code, for the health of its people and is a fine example for the rest of the Canada and the world."

Health is not an issue of jurisdictions and other excuses - no one, except vested interests, can stand in the way to improve the health of a community. To protect us from these self serving interests is one of the reasons, we thought, we elected our city officials?

The Ontario College of Family Physicians found that the open, peer-reviewed literature regarding humans is clear enough for our doctors to advise avoidance if at all possible. (3) Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and leukemia are frequently noted, along with brain tumors and neuroblastoma (children). These are the very literature the the PMRA chose to ignore - WHY?

See also: Children's Cancer And Pesticides. (4)

London is already one of the highest cancer rate areas in Canada. (5) This in itself is a disgrace, one would have thought that this City would jump to take every opportunity to reduce toxin exposure to their constituents? Given the rising cancer rate, why can't the money mongers such as the sold out Epidemiologist Councilor Rob Alder (a complete disgrace to his profession) see the potential negative impact on health from toxic pollutants? Unfortunately, he and some of the City officials are so beholden to the pesticide businesses/industry that they cannot err on the side of caution, even for those toxins that serve purely aesthetic purposes! Instead these industry prostitutes are even eager to subject themselves and their own children and grand children to the continued barrage of toxins.

Increasingly it appears, some elected officials need to be roundly disgraced/thrashed in public and/or taken to court just to do their job! Some stewardship?

Chris Gupta, P.Eng.



posted by Chris Gupta on Sunday May 14 2006
updated on Friday May 26 2006

URL of this article:



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