I would like to express my concerns about the dangers of the toxic pesticide products that _______________________ is using.
Give examples here (glyphosate, 2,4-D etc.)
You would be wise to consider that the combined effects of these common pesticides which are being used by __________________________________ are largely unknown.
According to Chensheng Lu of Harvard School of Public Health:
"Pesticides are designed and manufactured to kill organisms. Parents should avoid using these chemicals in the vicinity of their kids, and in places where the kids spend a lot of time.”
A Harvard study published by Lu found that outdoor pesticides used as weed killers were associated with a 26 percent increased risk for brain tumors.
What is sprayed outside will be tracked in and linger inside. There is a common misconception that pesticides quickly evaporate after they are applied. This is not true. One study found 2,4-D residue in carpet fibers a year after it was applied outside. 2,4-D is an active ingredient in the herbicide Speedzone and others, and is commonly used on turf grass.
Pesticides are particularly dangerous for children because kids play and breathe closer to the ground, where they are applied. Also their undeveloped organ systems cannot efficiently break down and excrete these chemicals, and as any parent can tell you, children exhibit more hand to mouth behaviors than adults, so their intake of any environmental toxin is higher.
The American Academy of Pediatrics says that there is no safe level of pesticide exposure for children. Some childhood issues explicitly linked to pesticide use include lower IQ, cancer, autism, asthma, impaired sexual development and more.
Pregnant women, their unborn children, and pets are also particularly vulnerable. A dog’s nose, much like the inside of your mouth, is an ideal receptor sites for transferring chemicals into the bloodstream.
Exposing our most vulnerable populations to these risks for cosmetic landscaping purposes is unacceptable. This needs to stop.
We don’t have to think very hard to come up with a list of things that were deemed “perfectly safe,” until enough people got sick from them. Lead paint, asbestos and cigarettes all come to mind. And now glyphosate based herbicides, the active ingredient in “Roundup”.
Unfortunately, EPA registration does not signify a safety approval of any kind. In the U.S., our main chemical safety law -- the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) -- makes it nearly impossible for the EPA to take action against dangerous chemicals, even those that are known to cause cancer, etc. Its weaknesses have allowed chemical companies to thwart EPA attempts to regulate chemicals -- sometimes for decades. Also, the EPA's pesticide registration process only considers research submitted by the manufacturer, not independent published peer-reviewed research.
We clearly cannot rely on federal regulatory agencies to protect us, therefore we must take action locally. Many other communities have taken the lead in protecting residents/students from toxic pesticides.
The City of Irvine switched to an organic landscaping policy in February 2016. Since then, the city has managed its more than 570 acres of parks, 800 acres of right-of-way, 70,000 trees and nearly 1.5 million square feet of facilities without conventional pesticides, including glyphosate. Harvard University switched to organic landscaping in 2008. They are two of many such examples across the country and show that landscapes can be managed successfully without reliance on toxic pesticides.