April 22, 2014 2:32 pm

Manitoba to limit but not ban lawn pesticides

WINNIPEG – It will soon become harder to achieve the lush green lawn many homeowners long for.

The province is moving forward with limits on synthetic chemical lawn pesticides, introducing legislation detailing the new rules Tuesday. The NDP government made clear it’s not an outright ban on synthetic pesticides: they would still be available in stores as long as they are kept behind the counter, and allowed to be used in gardens.

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“Manitoba families want their children to be safe everywhere they play,” Manitoba Conservation Minister Gord Mackintosh said in a news release. “This new legislation will ensure it does not matter where they are — at school, home or at daycare — they will be able to play on the grass that is free from potentially harmful chemical pesticides.”

There are still plenty of details missing from the proposed legislation, including a list of the products affected and what penalties could be slapped on violators.

Companies that rely on synthetic chemicals to treat lawns cheaply and easily say the government should stay out of their businesses.

“We’ve known this has been coming for a long time,” said David Hinton, president of Weed Man. “We don’t think Manitoba Conservation should be regulating these products. They don’t have the expertise.”

The province is moving forward with its ban on synthetic chemical lawn pesticides and will introduce legislation detailing the ban Tuesday.

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The legislation will only allow federally approved bio-pesticides for sale and use on lawns, driveways, sidewalks and patios as well as school grounds, playing fields and playgrounds.

Hinton said the approved product does work but it is expensive. He estimates it will cost homeowners up to 50 per cent more if they want to treat their lawns.

Farmland and gardens, golf courses and sod farms will be exempt from the legislation.

© Shaw Media, 2014

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