The City of Terrace prides itself on its natural landscapes, untainted beauty and community spirit. We have the opportunity to reduce the risks Terrace residents face within their environment and community, from unnecessary and potentially cancer-causing substances.
The Canadian Cancer Society is urging the City of Terrace to recognize the risks associated with cosmetic pesticides and eliminate use and exposure among residents. On February 14th, 2011, the Canadian Cancer Society will be presenting to the Terrace City Council regarding risks associated with the use of cosmetic pesticides and alternatives that exist for municipalities.
Cosmetic chemical pesticides are used to control unwanted weeds and plants in order to improve the appearance of lawns and gardens. There is no known health benefit associated with cosmetic pesticide use, however there are many risks.
There is a growing body of scientific evidence from credible, world renowned organizations, such as the International Agency for Research on Cancer and the US National Toxicology Program, linking pesticide exposure to many negative health and environmental impacts, including adult and childhood cancers. This list of cancers includes adult and childhood leukemia, Non Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and cancers of the brain, kidney, pancreas and prostate. Children are at greater risk from the effects of cosmetic pesticides due to their undeveloped immune systems, more permeable skin and particular behaviours such as crawling on the grass and putting objects in their mouths.
Research into the health effects of pesticides, and effective strategies at reducing them, has found that the most effective and successful way for municipalities to reduce pesticide use, and hence exposure, is through a bylaw banning the use of pesticides, accompanied by an educational program. Currently, 34 British Columbia municipalities have already adopted cosmetic pesticide bylaws. However, not one bylaw exists within the North, leaving tens of thousands of people unprotected. It is time that northerners were protected against exposure to cosmetic pesticides. The City of Terrace should take a leadership role in protecting residents from these harmful and unnecessary chemicals.
If you would like more information visit www.cancer.ca/bc/advocate
. If you would like to show your support, consider writing a letter to the Terrace City Council.
Health Promotion Volunteer
Canadian Cancer Society