Sample Bylaw

A Possible Draft Pesticide Bylaw for Calgary

In addition to the Bylaw below, The Coalition for a Healthy Calgary is proposing that the City of Calgary's regulations regarding weed control be brought into line with the Province of Alberta's regulations. Years ago, the City of Calgary took all the nuisance and noxious weeds on the Province of Alberta's list and made them noxious weeds on the Calgary weed list, including dandelions. Changing this means amending City of Calgary, Community Standards Bylaw 5M2004, Section 45, b & c, to align with provincial weed classifications under the Alberta Weed Control Act.

The Possible Draft Pesticide Bylaw for Calgary is based on the Toronto, Ontario bylaw passed in 2003 and amended in 2004. This bylaw would allow for using chemical pesticides on ragweed, an allergy-causing weed if less-toxic alternatives were not effective. This bylaw could also allow for chemical pesticides to be used on invasive species of plants if less-toxic alternatives were not effective.

This bylaw could be phased in, so people have time to adjust. For example, once Toronto implemented it’s pesticide bylaw, bylaw officers issued warnings for two years and only started fining unnecessary pesticide users after three years. Some Municipalities, like Halifax, have implemented the bylaw more quickly for schools, parks, playgrounds, day cares, senior citizen’s residences, universities, churches and hospital grounds.

Calgary Draft Pesticide Bylaw

Section 1 - Definitions

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall the meanings indicated:

ENCLOSED - Closed in by a roof or ceiling and walls with an appropriate opening or openings for ingress or egress, which openings are equipped with doors which are kept closed except when actually in use for egress or ingress.

HEALTH HAZARD - A pest which has or is likely to have an adverse effect on the health of any person.

PEST - An animal, a plant or other organism that is injurious, noxious or troublesome, whether directly or indirectly, and an injurious, noxious or troublesome condition or organic function of an animal, a plant or other organism.

PESTICIDE - Includes:

A.    A product, an organism, or a substance that is a registered control product under the federal Pest Control Products Act which is used as a means for directly or indirectly controlling, destroying, attracting or repelling a pest or for mitigating or preventing its injurious, noxious or troublesome effects.

B.    Despite Subsection A, a pesticide does not include:

1) A product that uses pheromones to lure pests, sticky media to trap pests or “quick-kill” traps for vertebrate species considered pests, such as mice and rats.

2) A product that is or contains only the following active ingredients:

a) A soap;
b) A mineral oil, also called “dormant or horticultural oil”;
c) Silicon dioxide, also called “diatomaceous earth”;
d) Biological pesticides, including Bt (bacillus thuringiensis) and nematodes;
e) Borax, also called “boric acid” or “boracic acid”;
f) Ferric phosphate;
g) Acetic acid;
h) Pyrethrum or pyrethrins;
i) Fatty Acids;
j) Sulphur;
k) Corn gluten meal.

Section 2 - Restrictions

A. No person shall apply or cause or permit the application of pesticides within the boundaries of the City.

B. The provision set out in Subsection A does not apply when pesticides are used:

1) For commercial agriculture;
2) To disinfect swimming pools, whirlpools, spas, or wading pools;
3) To purify water intended for the use of humans or animals;
4) To control termites;
5) To control or destroy a health hazard;
6) To control invasive species of plants when less toxic alternatives are not effective;
7) As a wood preservative;
8) As an insecticide bait which is enclosed by the manufacturer in a plastic or metal container that has been made in a way that prevents or minimizes access to the bait by humans and pets;
9) For injection into trees, stumps, or wooden poles;
10) to comply with the Weed Control Act of Alberta and the regulation made thereunder;
11) As an insect repellant for personal use.

Section 3 - Offences

Any person who contravenes any provision of this chapter is guilty of an offence and, upon conviction, is liable to a fine or penalty provided for under the Province of Alberta act that covers offences.

Click here for actions you can take to support a pesticide bylaw in Calgary.