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GardenGreen coalition aims to reduce, eliminate use of dangerous lawn pesticides

Children and pets at risk from chemicals sprayed on grass
A new initiative by MEC member group LocalMotionGreen aims to reduce the use of toxic pesticides on lawns and gardens in Grosse Pointe and all of Southeast Michigan.

“GardenGreen” was launched on Aug. 18, 2010, on the pesticide-free front lawn of the Grosse Pointe Academy. Hormone-free ice cream and organic toppings were served after three short presentations from State Representative Tim Bledsoe, Dr. James P. Rosbolt and Dr. John M. Simon.

Rep. Bledsoe has introduced legislation (HB 6373) to amend the Michigan Pesticide Notification Registry. The change would require any Michigan resident who signs the registry to be notified in advance when dangerous chemicals are applied to adjacent properties by commercial lawn companies. Currently, residents are required to get special approval from a medical doctor to receive such notifications.

Dr. Rosbolt, DO, MSPH, family physician with Beaumont Hospital, Grosse Pointe, and Medical Review Officer to U.S. Air Force and Michigan Air National Guard, talked about the direct link between pesticides and risks for human health. Dr. Simon, DMV, author and owner of Woodside Animal Clinic, discussed the danger of pesticides to pets’ health.

Pesticides are linked to asthma, learning delays, ADHD, cancer in people and pets, Parkinson’s disease, birth defects, and more. In the U.S., homeowners use more pesticides per acre than the agriculture industry, leading to serious health risks for pets and people, especially children.

GardenGreen brings together residents with the goal of a community that uses no pesticides in gardening and lawn maintenance. LocalMotionGreen welcomes everyone, including gardeners, parents, students, schools, congregations, hospitals, medical professionals and businesses to join this vital initiative.

“We are seeking volunteers to promote gardening without pesticides,” says Robin Heller, executive director of LocalMotionGreen. “Whether you would like to host a community event, be a stop on a tour of organic yards, distribute information to neighbors or help identify pesticide-free areas, we welcome your support.”

LocalMotionGreen provides information on how to garden without pesticides and where to find products and services locally. Topics covered include lawn maintenance techniques, building healthy soil, composting, insect control, native plantings, rain gardens, and more.

For more information, visit localmotiongreen.org or call 313-881-2263.

LocalMotionGreen is a grass-roots, solutions-driven, community-based 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to “Healthy People, Healthy Planet.” LocalMotionGreen is based in Grosse Pointe and serves all of Southeast Michigan. LocalMotionGreen was founded in 1999 to stimulate change by raising public awareness about toxins found in everyday living and offering alternatives in order to improve health and the quality of life.
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