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Help Protect Ashland Parks, Schools and Waters from Pesticides

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pesticide free zone

Please help influence the Draft Ashland Parks Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Policy, which will be discussed and possibly voted on at the Tuesday April 27th (Note this date and location has recently changed) meeting of the Ashland Parks Commission (7pm, Ashland's Pioneer Hall on Winburn Way).

COMMENT: Click here to send an automatic email to the Ashland Parks Department.

 We want the Ashland Parks IPM Policy to be as strong as the policies in Portland and Seattle. See the comparisons below:

  • Requires posting all pesticide sites 24 hrs. in advance?

Portland Policy: Yes

Seattle Policy: Yes

Ashland Proposal: No

  • Authorizes IPM program committee for planning and implementation?

Portland Policy: Yes

Seattle Policy: Yes

Ashland Proposal: No

  • Width of no-spray buffer around community gardens:

Portland Policy: 50 feet

Seattle Policy: None

Ashland Proposal: 15 feet

  • Width of no-spray buffer around playgrounds and picnic areas:

Portland Policy: None

Seattle Policy: 50 feet

Ashland Proposal: 15 feet

  • Requires buffers along streams?

Portland Policy: Yes, 25 feet

Seattle Policy: Yes, 50 feet

Ashland Proposal: No


Data from Portland Parks and Rec. Pest Management Program (2005) and Seattle Parks and Rec. Best Management Practices Manual, Chapter 3 - IPM (2005).


MAP: Click here to download a map of pesticide applications in Ashland (this is a PDF file).


Make your comments to the Parks Pesticide Subcommittee:

1) Wednesday, March 31 (6 to 9 pm): Pesticide Subcommittee Public Forum, hosted by the Ashland Parks Department, to accept public input on the draft policy on pesticide use. (Ashland Sr. Center, 1699 Homes Avenue, in Hunter Park east of Walker School)

2) Send comments by April 9 to: dyssegs@ashland.or.us or 340 S. Pioneer Street, Ashland 97520

COMMENT: Click here to send an automatic email to the Ashland Parks Department.

Suggested revisions to the Draft Pesticide Policy:

1) Expand the “Pesticide Use” objective to “reducing or eliminating” pesticides, and thereby adhere to the City’s 1996 Pesticide Use Ordinance.

2) Promote the use of natural pesticides and fertilizers in the list of IPM options.

3) Require a process for developing and implementing an annual pesticide reduction plan, including specific targets.

4) Require signs to be posted 24 hours before chemical pesticides are sprayed.

5) Require 50-foot no-spray buffers for playgrounds, picnic areas, and community gardens (rather than 15 feet).

6) Require 50 ft. no-spray buffers around streams, wetlands, water features, & ponds.

7) Establish a Citizens IPM Advisory Committee that can attend and participate in the annual staff review of pesticide reduction planning and activities.

8) Include Portland/Seattle Policy language to minimize risk to humans and all living organisms and use the best expert scientific opinion from regulatory agencies, state university departments, university extension scientists, and other experts.

9) Require careful consideration of possible harmful bioaccumulation and synergistic effects of pesticides with regards to humans, water, aquatic life, animals and plants. 

 

BACKGROUND DATA:

Last spring 440 people including 42 businesses signed a petition urging Ashland Parks Department to reduce or eliminate their use of chemical pesticides and adhere to the City’s 1996 Pesticide Ordinance, which requires that pesticides be “reduced or eliminated” on City property.

Excellent model policies have been developed in other cities, including Portland and Seattle. The City of Arcata has been pesticide-free for over 10 years. Seventeen cities in the Pacific Northwest have begun to phase out chemical pesticides by creating 85 pesticide-free parks and playgrounds. Seattle has phased out all 131 of their most toxic “Tier 1” pesticides. It can be done!

Citizens analyzed the Ashland Parks Department pesticide spray records for 2008 not including the Golf Course. These described 207 pesticide applications in 2008, which sprayed a total of 13 gallons (undilluted) of glyphosate and 2.5 gallons (undilluted) of triclopir, plus smaller amounts of eight other chemical pesticides. They used two “Tier 1 most toxic” pesticides (Finale herbicide and Lily Polysul insecticide).

MAP: Click here to download a map of pesticide applications in Ashland (this is a PDF file).

In addition to active ingredients in pesticides, relatively little toxicity information is known on the products' "inert" ingredients, in which disclosure is not required. In some cases, inert ingredients have been found to be more toxic than the active ingredients. The EPA is currently considered a rule to require the disclosure of inert ingredients.

It’s time the for Ashland Parks Department to reduce pesticides for the sake of human health, water quality, kids, critters, and pets!


Draft Policy online: www.ashland.or.us/News.asp?NewsID=1973

Thanks to Angie Thusius and Julie Norman for this alert.