In the News

August 30, 2016

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<p align="center" class="MsoNormal">Alberta Fails on National Cosmetic Pesticide Legislation Report Card

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<p align="center" class="MsoNormal">Childrens’ Health in Calgary is Vulnerable

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<p class="MsoNormal">CALGARY (August 30, 2016) – The Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment has given Alberta a failing grade when it comes to protecting childrens’ health from the harmful effects of cosmetic pesticide use on lawns and gardens ( 

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<p class="MsoNormal">From Manitoba east, 7 provinces have passed legislation banning the use of cosmetic pesticides.  Ontario has the strongest and most comprehensive cosmetic pesticide legislation.  Only those least-toxic products listed on a “white list” are permitted for use on lawns and gardens in Ontario. 

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<p class="MsoNormal">Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia lag behind.  Provincial legislation is lacking in all three provinces. Whereas, there are numerous municipalities with cosmetic pesticide bylaws in British Columbia, only a handful of municipalities in Alberta have banned herbicides – mostly summer villages around Pigeon Lake and city-owned property in Edmonton.

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<p class="MsoNormal">Calgary remains the largest municipality in Canada without any form of protection from cosmetic pesticide use.  Dr. John Howard, the Chair of CAPE’S Board is quoted, “There is a strong body of evidence linking pesticides to cancer, developmental deficits in our children and adverse reproductive outcomes. As health professionals the health of our children is more important than a perfect lawn or garden.”

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<p class="MsoNormal">The Coalition for a Healthy Calgary and its two predecessors, Pesticide-free Yards and Lawns for Kids have been advocating protection from cosmetic pesticide use for over 25 years in Calgary. “We want to give our children the best chance of a healthy lifetime.  Phasing out the use of toxic chemicals to maintain weed and insect-free lawns and gardens ought to be a no-brainer,” says Robin McLeod, Chair of the Coalition for a Healthy Calgary. 

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<p class="MsoNormal">The closest Calgary came to adopting a cosmetic pesticide bylaw was in 2008.  Passing of the bylaw was defeated by one vote in Council.  Unfortunately City Council is still preoccupied with “the dandelion.”  In September 2015 Council voted to spend $1.7millon from the City’s Reserve Stability Fund to mount a “Dandelion Suppression Control Program” in 2016.  “Perhaps a better use of funds,” according to McLeod, “would be a guarantee that Calgary’s 700 plus tot lots remain free of chemical toxins, and are posted as safe, toxin-free places for children to play.” Dr. Meg Sears, Chair of Prevent Cancer Now, an organization devoted to primary cancer prevention adds, “Least-toxic approaches should be the norm where families live and play.”

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<p align="center" class="MsoNormal">- 30 –

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<p align="center" class="MsoNormal">For more information please contact: Robin McLeod            403.703.0018


February 2015

Prairie Pesticide Update: 2 steps forward, 1 slide back

Although progress has been made in Canada reducing citizens' exposure to toxic pesticides, Alberta continues to perform a wierd dance progression/regression when it comes to urban cosmetic pesticide restrictions.  Check out Healthy Calgary's newsletter by clicking on the above title.

September 2014 FFWD

"A group that nearly won its battle to ban cosmetic pesticides in Calgary five years ago has resurrected the fight. The Coalition for a Healthy Calgary says the most common pesticides used on city greenspaces and yards pose a threat to human health." - See more...

September 2014 CBC Radio

CBC hears from researcher Dr. Meg Sears on environmental health about chemical spraying in our public spaces. Hear more...


Feb 17, 2009. Members of the Coalition for a Healthy Calgary made the trip to Canmore to support
Julie Budgen, speaking on behalf of Canmore’s Pink and Green Ribbon Health Program. A pesticide bylaw could be discussed at the Town’s strategic planning sessions this month. The race is on Calgary!

Canmore Leader update on pesticide debate

July 15, 2008 City Council Vote on Pesticide Bylaw Links:

Calgary Herald

Calgary Herald 2



June 25, 2008: Council Sub-Committee Vote Links:

June 25, CBC "Calgary Committee Votes to Phase Out Pesticide Use"

Calgary Sun's Rick Bell Attack's City Hall's Decision

Calgary Herald Cover Story "Calgary Phasing Out Weed Killers", June 26

Media Links:

Calgary Journal, by Lissa Jiggins is: Journal article

Calgary Herald (Oct. 16, Op-Ed, A17), “Pesticide phase-out bylaw is needed now” at  Calgary Herald Website

Calgary Herald Article, May 23, 2008. "Calgary urged to ban pesticides"

links to articles of interest about our campaign to have a pesticide bylaw passed and about reducing pesticide use in general. Read more . . .

Press Releases - from our campaign. Read more . . .

Electronic Press Kit - a short summary of the campaign and the important points of information. For useby the media or anyone who's interested. Read more . . .

Events and past News:

Calgary Artist Chides Aldermen Opposed to Pesticide Phase out

It's Time: Phase Out Cosmetic Pesticides Event

 On Wednesday June 18, Kirk Heuser, News anchor for Global TV hosted a benefit concert in support of the phase out bylaw with performances by Anne Loree, Micel and Original Medecine, Widow Maker and Lorrie Matheson!

Banners go up City-wide as part of Campaign

For the week leading up to the June 25 vote, banners were mounted on city overpasses. Posters, banners, postcards, radio ads, and print ads are spreading the word that pesticides are on their way out of Calgary.

Mandala Event at Calgary's First Pesticide-Free Park

The Mandala community art project was a great success, with 300 people painting for 13 hours in support of the pesticide phase out bylaw. It took place Saturday June 14 at New Edinborough Park, Calgary's first Pesticide-Free Park, 5a St. and 3 Ave NW. Go by and have a look!

Watch a Time-lapse Video of the Mandala's Creation

Pesticide issue has been endorsed by numerous aldermen in the local press:

Druh Farrell strikes a superhero pose with the Coalition's Dandelion mascot at her campaign office

Joe Ceci, addresses the crowd at a June 10, 2007 Pesticide-free park party. He proceeded to take his clean team to pickup litter along the Bow River.

Dale Hodges plants a campaign sign alongside the pesticide-free yard sign during the election campaign.