Daily News Archive
March 13, 2006
Olympia Says Yes to Reducing Toxic Pesticides
(Beyond Pesticides, March 13, 2006) The Olympia
City Council unanimously adopted a new resolution that will reduce the
purchase and use of pesticides and persistent toxic chemicals. According
to a press release issued by the Washington
Toxics Coalition, Olympia
Resolution M-1621 will ensure that the most toxic pesticides
will not be used in city parks and it also directs the city to reduce
purchases of products such as PVC pipes, chlorine-bleached paper, and
mercury thermostats. Olympia Resolution M1621 is the first
of its kind in the state to address both pesticides and persistent toxic
Organizing efforts for the resolution was successfully accomplished
by a local coalition known as the Healthy Olympia Task Force that included
dozens of Olympia residents, the Black Hills Audubon Society, People
for Puget Sound, and the Washington Toxics Coalition.
"The City of Olympia has shown real leadership in adopting this
forward-thinking policy," said Jean MacGregor of the Black Hills
Audubon Society. "We can have beautiful parks and buildings without
According to Beth Doglio, an Olympia parent and member of the Healthy
Olympia Task Force, "pesticides and persistent toxic chemicals
pose a real threat to the health of our kids as well as to wildlife
like orca whales." Ms. Doglio continued, "the City of Olympia
is saying with this resolution that we know we can use healthier methods
and materials. I want our city to be a leader in putting health first."
Persistent toxic chemicals include PCBs, mercury, and dioxin, and other
chemicals that persist in the environment and build up in the food chain.
These chemicals have been linked to certain cancers, birth defects,
and other reproductive problems. A report released in the Fall of 2005
showed findings of harmful toxic chemicals including pesticides, PCBs,
stain repellants, flame retardants, mercury and lead detected in 100
percent of those tested (See Daily News).
By adopting the
resolution, Olympia will join the ranks of a number of Washington cities,
counties, and school districts that have ended the use of toxic pesticides
that are linked to cancer, asthma and developmental disabilities. Those
that have ended the use of toxic pesticides include: the cities of Seattle,
Snohomish, Lynnwood, and Bainbridge Island, King and Thurston Counties,
as well as seven school districts including Vancouver and Oak Harbor.
The City of Seattle also adopted a resolution to reduce its purchase
of products containing or contributing to persistent toxic pollution
"Cities like Olympia are a bellwether for the movement away from
reliance upon toxic chemicals," says Angela Storey, Pesticides
Organizer with the Washington Toxics Coalition. "Our children deserve
a chemical-free future and communities in Washington are leading the
For more information, contact Angela Storey at Washington Toxics
Coalition, [email protected] or 206-632-1545 ext. 111.