Ottawa agrees to pesticide review

The federal government announced Feb. 6 that it will begin a health review of 23 pesticides.

The decision came after four lawsuits were filed in August 2013 over 29 chemicals that have been banned in Europe.

Environmental groups filed the suits, arguing that by law the federal government must review any chemicals banned in major countries.

Health Canada originally declined to conduct studies, claiming the chemicals had previously been examined and the risks presented were acceptable.  But the Pest Management Regulatory Agency reversed the decision on Dec. 30, 2013.

Elaine MacDonald of the environmental law group Ecojustice said the reversal is a victory, but it should not have to sue the government in order for action to be taken, CBC reports.

The pesticides included in the study have been banned in Europe and can be found in over 360 different products across Canada, including the popular weed killer 2,4-D.

MacDonald stated in a CBC report that 2,4-D is a common herbicide found in many household products. Norway banned the chemical in 2000 over studies linking it to cancer and due to its ability to move into groundwater.

Ecojustice lawyer Laura Tessoro told CTV the group has agreed to place the lawsuit on hold while the government conducts the studies, but that it must keep the pressure on.

About News Desk 796 Articles
The Oakville Sun News Desk is responsible for the editorial content you see published on this site. The content is the work of Sheridan journalism students as they learn their skills and prepare for working in the field.