Take Action for Pesticide Free Towns
Led by municipalities, #PesticideFreeTowns are possible.
We invite the municipalities to reduce use of pesticides and biocidal products, which threaten human health, environment and biodiversity in towns, and take responsibility for a healthy future by moving towards pesticide free methods in pest management.
Imagine that you sit back and enjoy the garden of your apartment, that you play with your children in a park, or wash your face with the tap water in your house; and slowly being poisoned. Toxic products commonly used in agriculture, thus reaching even our dinner tables, threaten our health and our natural environment not only through agricultural practices but also in our living spaces, since they are widely used in parks, schools, roads, sidewalks, cemeteries, dumpsites, private gardens and university campuses, etc.
Analysis of 96 grass samples taken from 19 playgrounds, 4 school gardens and 1 farmers market in South Tyrol, Italy, revealed 32 chemical pesticide active ingredients, 76% of which with endocrine disrupting properties.
A study in the USA found that 28 out of 40 pesticides commonly used in school grounds were possible or probable carcinogenic, 26 were reproductive system disruptors, 26 were causing neurological disorders and 13 were causing birth defects.
According to the report on water quality in Turkey, presented during the Climate Change and Water Management Symposium, 33 out of 49 micro-pollutants detected in our waters were pesticides. Scientific communities are increasingly drawing attention to the harmful effects of these pesticides and new research are being published on their use in cities.
The No Pesticides on My Plate Campaign led by Buğday Association for Supporting Ecological Living and organized by No Pesticides on My Plate Pesticide Action Network, which was established by more than 100 civil society organizations and civil initiatives, was signed by more than 165.000 concerned citizens and managed to draw the attention of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry towards the problem. This resulted in banning 25 pesticides and restricting 7 pesticides in 2020.
We are getting rid of agricultural pesticides on our tables together. Now, it is time to take action for our cities!
As the No Pesticides on My Plate Platform and as concerned citizens who signed this pledge, we are demanding our municipalities to ban pesticides and biocidal products with the same active ingredients, which primarily harm our reproductive systems but also disrupt our endocrine systems as a whole, causing a variety of cancer cases, chromosome abnormalities, developmental disorders in children; which trigger biodiversity loss by affecting honey bees and other organisms, and damage ecosystems; which poison the air we breathe, the water we drink and the earth that feeds us; and call municipalities to make a plea for using non-chemical, pesticide-free alternatives instead and take solid steps towards “Pesticide Free Towns Turkey’’.
What can you do for Pesticide Free Towns?
As citizens, you can be a part of this national campaign by signing and sharing the petition, as well as making demands and inquiries to your local governments’ public relations departments, complaint hotlines, pest management authorities such as public health, environment, sanitation, park management departments and directorates of the municipality and / or directly to the mayor.
- When communicating with municipalities via e-mail, you can CC firstname.lastname@example.org address in order to inform us and monitor the process.
- You can forward our demands to your municipality’s city council agenda, and let them contact us via email@example.com.
As municipalities, you can make a pledge for phasing out pesticides used in municipal pest management and instead using ecological, environment friendly alternatives, preparing a solid, participatory strategic action plan, and putting efforts on this issue in your next election agenda, and be a pioneer pesticide free town.
- You can download the ‘‘Pesticide Free Towns Pledge’’ here. You can sign and send the pledge to us via firstname.lastname@example.org in order to reach your organization’s targets towards being a pesticide free town.
- If you inform us about your actions regarding alternative, ecological pest management methods that you use, good practices, and your action plan, if you have one, via email@example.com, we can show these as exemplary actions in our project documents, include in our communication efforts, thus help support other municipalities towards pesticide free transition.
To support local campaigns:
- Situation Analysis Report for Pest Management in Turkish Municipalities – Executive Summary
- Alternatives to Herbicides – A Guide for the Amenity Sector
- Consumer Guide – Endocrine Disrupting Pesticides in Your Food
Buğday Association for Supporting Ecological Living has been conducting ‘‘Pesticide Free Towns’’ Project between April 1, 2021 and March 31, 2022, funded by European Union Civil Society Dialogue VI Programme, in partnership with Pesticide Action Network Europe, in consultation with Biocidal Occupational and Environmental Health Association (BİYOSİDER) and in collaboration with ‘‘No Pesticides on My Plate Platform’’.
Because of their effects on human health and the environment, use of pesticides and biocidal products is a concern of the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and the Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change, as well as local governments; however, the campaign has begun under the scope of ‘‘Pesticide Free Towns Turkey’’ project by the No Pesticides on My Plate Platform, focusing on use of pesticides and biocidal products in towns and cities, thus, priority addressees are municipalities for their authorization in pest management in urban settings.