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A bi-partisan majority of Maryland lawmakers found the chlorpyrifos ban so urgent and so compelling that they passed it in the final moments of the legislative session that finished early due to COVID-19. It was supported by numerous scientists, public health officials – including the Maryland Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Maryland State Medical Society — farmers, and environmental advocates.
So, we were deeply disappointed when Governor Hogan vetoed the bill (SB 300). Now we need your help to ensure your legislators OVERRIDE the Governor’s veto!
The EPA was in the process of banning chlorpyrifos based on extensive scientific evidence that it is incredibly damaging to people, pollinators, and our planet. Then in 2017, the EPA reversed course allowing continued use of this brain-harming neurotoxic pesticide, linked to autism and learning disorders. Federal lawsuits have been filed and states across the country have stepped up to ban chlorpyrifos.
Evidence of chlorpyrifos harm continues to mount: chlorpyrifos exposure can exacerbate COVID-19 vulnerability by impacting respiratory symptoms and asthma; new studies link it to Parkinson’s disease and kidney cancer.
Governor Hogan’s veto, which would put the Maryland Department of Agriculture in charge of banning this toxic pesticide, is part of a national strategy by the pesticide and chemical industries to quash strong state pesticide laws by replacing them with weak and changeable regulations.
When it comes to banning chlorpyrifos, we need the power of the law – not regulations. Regulations can be changed; regulations can be challenged; regulations can be unilaterally altered by unelected administrative figures. Legislation banning pesticides leaves no loopholes.
Maryland’s children need a chlorpyrifos ban with the certainty of legislation.
As of January 1, 2018, the hard-fought and won Pollinator Protection Act went into effect. Stores had 18 months after the law was passed to continue to sell their current inventories—this concession to stores ended this New Year’s day.
Except it didn’t. Apparently, many stores have not ended the sales of banned neonic-containing consumer garden and lawncare products. Maybe store managers or their corporate purchasing departments don’t know about the new Maryland law. These pollinator-harming products may be available for unwitting Maryland consumers–at a store near you. So, it falls to all of us to tell them.
Help us get these dangerous outlawed products out of Maryland stores. We need you to go to your friendly neighborhood store and check the shelf for a neonic product. Then report it to us. This fact sheet makes it easy to do in 5-10 minutes on your next visit.
Join this simple, yet effective, community service—to benefit the whole web of pollinator life. We think of it as a people-powered pollinator defender squad—will you help us? It’s a great activity to do with your children who will learn a valuable civics lesson in the process of defending the butterflies and lightening bugs we all loved as children.
The bottom line: If we don’t bring awareness of the new law to store owners and infractions to the Maryland Dept. of Agriculture, then no one is going to do anything about enforcing it. Let us know what you find and report, and we will follow-up.
Download the “5 Simple Steps” Pollinator Squad fact sheet.