Thursday, December 14, 2006

Green Party of Canada: Ban toxic substances immediately to prevent cancer, says May

News Release
For Immediate Release

Ban toxic substances

immediately to prevent

cancer, says May

Ottawa, Dec. 13 - The federal government has pledged to re-evaluate what we already know about toxic substances accumulating in our environment and in our bodies: that these substances are killing us and must be banned immediately, said Green Party leader Elizabeth May.

"The government wants to take three years to re-assess 200 of the most dangerous chemicals," said Ms. May. "But the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) gives it the tools to ban hazardous substances within months.

"It's time the government showed that it's serious about protecting the health of Canadians by using the powers it already has under CEPA."

On Monday, 700 environmental scientists publicly criticized the Conservative government's recently announced plan to regulate toxic substances, saying that it fails to guarantee action to eliminate substances known to harm human health and ecosystems.

In a letter to the Environment Ministry, the scientists urged the government to use CEPA to regulate toxic and harmful substances such as the flame retardant polybrominated diphenyl ether (PDBE) and plastic softeners.

"CEPA is a fully functional legislative framework for dealing with industrial pollution yet the federal government continues to lag behind Europe and even the United States when it comes to regulating toxic substances," said Ms. May, citing the EU's emerging Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals (REACH) framework which is expected to become law early next year.

The Green Party wants CEPA amended to cover non-commercial aspects of pesticides, leaving the registration, regulation and use of pesticides in the Pest Control Products Act but moving the banning of dangerous substances and handling of disposal and spills into CEPA.

Other laws such as the Hazardous Products Act and the Food and Drugs Act can sometimes be used to regulate such products but they do not address emerging human health and environmental risks. And their work has been made that much more difficult by recent Conservative budget cuts to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

The Green Party also wants substances shown to be significant risk factors in human cancer, immuno-suppression, endocrine disruption, neuro-toxicity and/or mutagenicity to be regulated within CEPA with the goal of reducing and/or eliminating exposure of vulnerable groups within society (pregnant women, the unborn, children, the sick, the poor and the elderly).

In addition, emissions of these substances will be subject to a Toxic Tax, offset by reductions elsewhere in the tax system. Green Party MPs would also work to ban the incineration of imported toxic waste.

Camille Labchuk

Authorized by the Chief Agent of the Green Party of Canada

You can read this message on the Green Party's website at

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2 comment(s):

perhaps the govenment could work on eliminating the most toxic substance of all....the farts the come out of harper's mouth.

By Anonymous scout, at 2:36 PM  

Hahahaha!! Right you are, Scout, as always... :-)

By Blogger Annamarie, at 7:23 PM  

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