Seattle, WA Further Reductions of Pesticide Use

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Seattle, WA, US

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Type: Resolution

Status: Adopted on 5/31/05

Vote: Unanimous (with 1 excused)

Source File: Click here


Resolution Number: 30772
A RESOLUTION relating to further reductions in pesticide use in the City of Seattle.

WHEREAS, for the purposes of this resolution the term "pesticides" includes many types of chemicals to control pests and weeds such as herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides.

WHEREAS, Resolution 30144 established a goal of eliminating the use of the most hazardous pesticides in City-owned landscapes and reducing the City's remaining pesticide use by 30 percent; and

WHEREAS, the City established a goal in the Seattle Comprehensive Plan to work toward reducing the use of chemicals that have negative impacts on aquatic or human health, especially on City-owned property and rights-of-way; and

WHEREAS, while Resolution 30144 pesticide reduction goals have largely been met on City-owned lands (except in golf courses), encouraging pesticide reduction on private lands within the City through on-going programs such as Seattle Public Utilities' Natural Yard Care program offers additional opportunities to reduce potential harmful effects on aquatic and human health; and

WHEREAS, to help achieve reduction goals in City-owned golf courses, environmental stewardship guidelines and integrated pest management (IPM) plans have been developed for each golf course; and

WHEREAS, the City feels that pesticide manufacturers should be aware of the City's desire for safer pesticide products; NOW THEREFORE,


Section 1. To further reduce the harmful effects of pesticides on people and aquatic ecosystems, the City will enhance its pesticide reduction efforts through the actions described in subsections A. through E.

A. City departments, primarily Seattle Public Utilities, should amplify their outreach to private landowners to promote elimination or reduced use of pesticides on private lands within the City, particularly in major creek watersheds. Outreach should use a variety of approaches such as events, advertisements, mailings, and technical assistance to landowners and should emphasize proper landscape practices near creeks and other water bodies.

B. The City shall communicate to pesticide product industry leaders the City's desire to have pesticide products with fewer potential hazards for human health and the environment available for use on public and private lands in Seattle, and that the City would intend to purchase such products to the maximum feasible extent.

C. The City will continue to pursue measures that further reduce and minimize pesticide use in City-owned landscapes, including achieving a 30% reduction of use in City golf courses by 2008 through integrated pest management protocols, developing golf course-specific management plans as described in subsection D, and other means. The City intends to annually revisit its goals to identify the potential for further pesticide reduction.

D. When environmental stewardship and IPM plans are developed for individual City-owned properties, priority will be given to non- chemical pest control practices (including hand-weeding) in intensively used areas such as playgrounds and within 200 feet of creeks, wetlands, lakes and other water bodies. Existing policy for those areas restricts chemical use to Tier 2 and 3 pesticides which pose reduced or little risk to water quality and aquatic species.

E. Seattle Public Utilities will use appropriate funding sources to monitor major creeks in the City to identify whether Tier 1 pesticides in the water exceed state or federal criteria for human health or aquatic life.

Section 2. If, after two years of implementing enhanced City pesticide reduction measures, harmful or frequent levels of the most potentially toxic (Tier 1) pesticides are detected in local water bodies, the City will take further action to prohibit public and private use of Tier 1 pesticides starting in 2008. A review process for allowing case-by- case and programmatic exceptions will accompany such a prohibition.

Section 3. The Office of Sustainability and Environment (OSE) shall present a report to the City Council each May that evaluates progress in reaching the City's pesticide reduction goals and the specific steps that have been taken to implement the strategies identified in Section 1.