Lawn Pesticides Letter to Editor I

To the Editor:

I am writing to express my concern for the use of lawn pesticides everywhere – all for the sake of green lawns.  The desire for the perfect lawn is leading many households to expose their children, pets, and water supplies to toxic pesticides that threaten public health and the environment.   And yet, safe and effective alternatives to pesticides exist.   

These chemical pesticides companies contribute to the yearly application of more than 70 million pounds of pesticides on America’s lawns! The amount of pesticides applied is significant; the rate of pesticides used on lawns is on average ten times more per acre than what is used on agricultural land!

Did you know that: In one particular company:

  • All 32 of the Chemical lawn pesticide products include ingredients that pose threats to the environment including water supplies, aquatic organisms, and non-targeted insects.
  • 17 of 32 (53%) of the chemical lawn pesticide products include ingredients that are possible carcinogens, as defined by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).
  • 7 of 32 (22%) of the chemical lawn pesticide products include ingredients
    that are known reproductive toxins.
  • 13 of 32 (41%) of these chemical lawn pesticide products include ingredients that are banned or restricted in other countries.

Even though these pesticides are proven to be hazardous to public health and the environment, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) pesticide regulatory system has put its stamp of approval on the use of these
pesticides. Although a growing pool of research links exposure to the pesticides to nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and headaches and chronic illnesses like lymphoma, leukemia, bladder cancer, and learning disabilities, the USEPA continues to
register these pesticides for commercial and residential use.

Children, pets and the environment need to be protected from dangerous pesticides. The good news is that lawn care and landscaping services
can deliver healthy green lawns through non-toxic organic programs. Groups like the
Northeast Organic Farming Association regularly train and certify professionals who offer pesticide-free services. 

I would like to encourage residents to join with the Toxics Action Center – a non-profit organization based in Boston — to “Refuse to Use these chemical lawn products” until These companies change the way they do their
business, including phasing out the use of pesticides considered possible carcinogens,
disclosing all ingredients in their pesticide products, and offering a comprehensive organic lawn care program that does not use pesticides or synthetic fertilizers.  For more information, visit


James Little
Endicott, NY

James Little is a Binghamton Green Party member.

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