News release

Non-Essential Pesticides Ban for Nova Scotia

A proposed ban on the sale and use of non-essential pesticides will protect the health of Nova Scotia's environment and people across the province.

"Our public consultation response on this was overwhelmingly in favour of a ban," said Environment Minister Sterling Belliveau. "Medical experts and Nova Scotians agree this is the right solution for our province; it will protect our environment and make life better for families throughout the province."

The minister introduced a bill, today, May 4, titled An Act to Prohibit the Sale and Use of Non-essential Pesticides.

The sale and use of non-essential lawn care pesticides will not be permitted as of next spring. The ban will extend to ornamental shrubs, flowers and trees by spring 2012.

A list of low-risk pesticides which will be allowed for sale and use will be included in regulations.

"There are many uses for pesticides and each use needs to be looked at from a risk versus benefit perspective," said Dr. Robert Strang, Chief Medical Officer of Health for Nova Scotia. "In regard to cosmetic purposes, there are safe and healthy alternative methods available, to achieve the same result."

Alternative pest-control practices will be encouraged through education and public outreach. The Department of Environment will work closely with industry, municipalities and non-governmental organizations to ensure they are aware of the regulations and informed of alternatives.

Health Canada has said it is good practice to reduce or eliminate unnecessary exposure to pesticides.

During public consultations,the Canadian Cancer Society, Doctors Nova Scotia, and the I.W.K. Health Centre, expressed support for a ban to reduce potential effects on human health.

Quebec, Ontario, New Brunswick, and P.E.I. have restrictions on non-essential pesticides use.

If the bill becomes law, regulations supporting the legislation would be developed over the next several months, with further input with municipalities, industry and non-governmental organizations.

The phased-in approach will give industry and homeowners time to prepare.

The ban will not apply to vegetable gardens, agriculture, golf courses or forestry.

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Protecting Nova Scotia's environment and its people — that's the goal behind a ban on the sale and use of non-essential pesticides.

Environment Minister Sterling Belliveau announced plans today (May 4th) to ban the sale and use of lawncare pesticides, except certain lower-risk, organic products.

Health Canada and Nova Scotia's Medical Officer of Health recommend reducing exposure to non-essential pesticides.

The phased-in ban will begin next spring, giving homeowners and retailers time to adapt to the new law.

It will not apply to vegetable gardens, forestry, golf courses or agriculture.


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Bruce Nunn
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