Banned pes­ti­cide used by prov­ince

The Compass - - OR­THTE -

“If the de­part­ment were to un­der­take only brush cut­ting to clear all road­ways, it would have to con­stantly mon­i­tor the con­di­tion of road­sides to see if new veg­e­ta­tion had ap­peared, and would have to con­stantly re­visit ar­eas to redo brush-cut­ting work, which would be less ef­fi­cient and ef­fec­tive.” Simp­son dis­agrees. “I think they should do it the more ex­pen­sive way and hire peo­ple to do it with brush cut­ting, be­cause I think that this is a very large amount of pes­ti­cide be­ing used,” he said.

“It’s go­ing to get into the wa­ter sup­plies. It spreads very rapidly. It’s bro­ken down if it’s buried in soil very quickly, but it does spread by air and it spreads by wa­ter.”

As for the dan­ger as­so­ci­ated with Tor­don 101, Simp­son said, “that’s the thou­sand-dol­lar ques­tion.”

“In terms of acute tox­i­c­ity, kill you on the spot - not very (dan­ger­ous). Long-term, small amounts, prob­a­bly more than peo­ple re­al­ize,” he said.

He added that sev­eral stud­ies have made links between th­ese chem­i­cals and de­vel­op­men­tal disor­ders and birth de­fects and de­gen­er­a­tive dis­eases and can­cers in adults.

TC Me­dia re­quested an in­ter­view with En­vi­ron­ment Min­is­ter Terry French to dis­cuss the con­tin­ued use of Tor­don 101 but was told he was un­avail­able.

How­ever, a state­ment from the de­part­ment was pro­vided.

“In all prov­inces of Canada that have set sim­i­lar res­i­den­tial bans, road­side veg­e­ta­tion con­trol is still con­sid­ered a nec­es­sary use,” she wrote.

“Fur­ther­more, the pes­ti­cide it­self has never been banned from any prov­ince. The Pro­vin­cial Gov­ern­ment ac­cepts that the fed­eral regis­tra­tion process en­sures that such prod­ucts can be used without caus­ing un­due harm to peo­ple or the en­vi­ron­ment.

“The con­trac­tor for the pro­vin­cial road­side spray­ing pro­gram has com­plied with all re­quire­ments of the li­cence terms and con­di­tions.”

Th­ese con­di­tions in­clude in­form­ing the pub­lic of where it will be spray­ing th­ese chem­i­cals. This usu­ally takes the form of news­pa­per ad­ver­tise­ment.

Simp­son doesn’t think that is suffi- cient warn­ing.

“I don’t think the pub­lic has been aware of what’s planned or what’s started to be per­formed,” he said. cmaclean@thetele­gram.com Twit­ter:

@Tele­gramMacLean

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