Daily News Archive
From May 5, 2006                                                                                                        

Event Calls on TruGreen ChemLawn to Go Organic
(Beyond Pesticides, May 5, 2006) Concerned about protecting their communities from toxic pesticides, members from national, regional, and Illinois-based environmental and public health groups will gather to call on the company TruGreen ChemLawn and its parent company Service Master to change it’s business practices. The groups say there is a need for greater disclosure of pesticide products and health protections. According to a media advisory issued by Toxic Action Center, representatives from Green Century Capital Management and Toxics Action Center will present a resolution calling on the company to stop the use of toxic lawn care pesticides. Following the shareholder’s meeting, groups and residents will hold a “Go Organic” rally and media conference at neighboring Grant Park.

TruGreen ChemLawn is the largest lawn care provider in the United States, serving more than 3.4 million households. An analysis of the 32 pesticides used by the company by Toxics Action Center revealed that 53% of TruGreen ChemLawn’s pesticide products include ingredients that are possible carcinogens, as defined by the United States Environmental Protection, while all 32 pose threats to the environment.

According to Max Muller of Green Century Capital Management, “These chemicals pose the greatest danger to pregnant women and to their developing children, as well as to infants and the elderly. The ones placed most at risk are those that should be most protected.”

Rachel Rosenberg, executive director of Safer Pest Control Project said, “organic products are effective and available.” Ms. Rosenberg continued, “the time is right to market alternatives to pesticides as the general public is clamoring for organic lawncare services.” Toxic Action Center is planning to present the shareholders with 2230 pledges that they collected, countless others were received on their website. According to Toxic Action Center, the pledges symbolize the number of people across the countries that are concerned about the health and environmental effects of TruGreen ChemLawn’s pesticide products. The groups are asking TruGreen ChemLawn to:

  • Phase out the use of pesticides, beginning with possible carcinogens.
  • Disclose all ingredients in their pesticide products, including inert ingredients.
  • Offer a comprehensive organic lawn-care program, which does not use pesticides or synthetic fertilizers.
  • Protect workers while phasing out pesticides by providing adequate protective equipment.
  • Stop using children to market pesticide products.

The groups are calling on the leaders of TruGreen ChemLawn and Service Masters to become the industry leader of the emerging organic lawn care market. They suggested that TruGreen ChemLawn has the ability to reduce the amount of pesticides applied to lawns and the subsequent effects on children and pets. A safer, less-toxic lawn care program is a win-win proposition for ServiceMaster and the communities it serves.

For more information contact Paul Schramski [Toxics Action Center] 617-747-4374
[email protected]