AGA-BC Environmental Advocacy Committee Update
October 31, 2016
Dear Association Members,
After an extremely busy summer, I can now take some time to update progress of the EAC and specifically the IPM Manual.
As you are all aware, as of July 1st of this year, the law surrounding the use of pesticides in BC has changed. The change was initiated due to public concern of the use of pesticides and was followed up with a Special Committee created by the provincial government in 2009. A consultation process began and includes submissions from our respective turf and golf associations.
In early 2014, the EAC recognized the need for an update to the publication “IPM for Turfgrass Managers”. This would still act as resource for turfgrass agronomy and could also act as reference for ensuring compliance under upcoming changes to regulations. A key component agreed upon by all committee members, was making this manual “open source” meaning any golf course can use the resource at no cost, downloaded from our association websites. This would help ensure all courses in BC show consistency and compliance without needing to part of an association.
The rest of 2014 and into 2015 was devoted to securing funds for continuing lobbying efforts and paying for a contractor to update our manual. At this time on behalf of the Committee, I would like to once again thank the all the contributors to date, in no particular order:
• The Hon. Mary Polack, Minister of Environment BC
• The WCTA
• The BCGSA Provincial and Regional Chapters
• The NGCOA
Late in 2015, a ‘Request for Proposals’ went out through trade associations and by early 2016 the Committee had chosen CropHealth Advising & Research for our manual update. Although not much progress was made over the summer months, Mario Lanthier, owner of CropHealth Advising & Research, is now in full swing and some of you have had requests for site visits, a crash course on golf IPM for Mario.
The timeline for completion is now set for the end of March 2017; it will be available as a secure PDF on our Association’s websites. The goal of the committee is to review and update annually if needed, to ensure our IPM practices are in compliance with ever changing legislation and as new methods and products become available.
Over the summer and post the July 1st deadline, it became clear that many in golf did not have a written IPM program as required by the IPMR. After an Interior Chapter BCGSA meeting, I decided to share the IPM document I created some time ago. I do update annually and have posted my documentation for free download at www.bcgsa.com/index.html . There is also a complete guide to new IPM regulations at http://wcta-online.com/the-wcta/advocacy/1712-turf-manager’s-guide-to-new-ipm-regulations . You can also contact me directly at email@example.com if needed.
On a completely different topic, Jerry Rousseau and myself were contacted by David Woodske, Industry Specialist, Ornamentals and Greenhouse Vegetables for BC Ministry of Agriculture. He has been asked by the PMRA to provide information on application timing in BC for insecticides used to control these specific insects on turf, including golf, sod farms, landscapes, and sports fields: ants, chinch bugs, cutworms or sod webworms. If anyone is treating for these insects can you please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Since his request was made, I still have yet to hear of anyone dealing with these specific insects.
Finally, I would like to thank all of those who have agreed to allow Mario a site visit. I would also like to thank the EAC committee members and all those who sit on association boards and committees. Our collective efforts are working and we are gaining momentum as group of skilled professionals.