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An Ounce - Summer 2011

In this issue:

Cancer Fact

Doctors writing in the prestigious scientific journal Paediatrics and Child Health found that the common weed-killer 2,4-D “can be persuasively linked to cancers, neurological impairment and reproductive problems.”


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Asbestos: Canada plays destructive role on world stage

By Kathleen Ruff

Canada played a pivotal role on the world stage last month. Unfortunately, it was a destructive role that earned Canada worldwide condemnation.

At the conference of the UN Rotterdam Convention in Geneva in June, Canada single-handedly prevented chrysotile asbestos from being put on the Convention’s list of hazardous substances. The purpose of the Convention is to promote responsible trade in hazardous chemicals and pesticides. It does not ban trade but simply requires that “prior informed consent” be obtained before exporting any substance on its list.

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B.C. Pesticide Ban Would be Winner for Health and Business

By Gideon Forman

B.C. Premier Christy Clark and Opposition Leader Adrian Dix are to be commended for supporting a province-wide ban on the sale and use of lawn and garden pesticides. Not only will this legislation be hugely popular, it will also have a very positive effect on the health of B.C.’s people, environment, and economy. How can we be sure? Because we’ve seen what happens when pesticide regulations are passed in other provinces.

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2011 Cancer Prevention Challenge Update

By Dallas Shannon

The 2011 Cancer Prevention Challenge (CPC) is off to a great start. There has been a wide variety of creative fundraising ideas from various groups across Canada. There have been many requests to extend the CPC dates and in response, Prevent Cancer Now has extended the Challenge until November 30th. Many people have summer and fall challenges that they would like to try and we are looking forward to see the creative ideas people have come up with. If you have friends or family who want to try a Cancer Prevention Challenge, please let them know they can plan something over the summer and fall.

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PCN Incineration Campaign Update

By Linda Gasser

Durham-York Incinerator, Ontario

Ministry of the Environment grants operating permit approvals

After the Minister of the Environment granted Environmental Assessment approval in November 2010, the Ministry of the Environment (MoE) staff – on June 28, 2011 – approved the operating permits (Certificates of Approval) for the proposed Durham-York incinerator. Approval was granted a mere nineteen days after the close of the public comment period. Please read our media release and concerns about this project setting an undesirable precedent, especially since the MoE has set the bar low and did not require continuous monitoring for several contaminants that their own A-7 Guideline suggest for consideration, such as particulate matter.

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Fracking, shale gas and health: A case for precaution

By Barb Harris

Only a few months ago, fracking was a vague concept to me. That changed when I found out that the small rural community where I recently bought a home had been opened for exploration bids for onshore shale gas. I was drawn to Nova Scotia’s North Shore for its clean air, natural beauty and tranquility. As I began my crash course in shale gas development and fracking, I could scarcely believe the picture that emerged. All that I loved about this area would be destroyed if shale gas development took place. For the past decade I have focused on issues relating to less toxic living and environmental health. Now I wanted to find out how fracking might impact health.

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What exactly IS green chemistry?

By Beverley Thorpe

On July 10th CBC News released an exposé entitled: Some ‘green’ detergents still contain chemicals. The title of this article underscores all the confusion about how the public views chemicals and how we are now supposedly defining ‘green’ chemicals. The title is so blatantly misleading that I was surprised to read it. In reality ALL products contain chemicals, the human body contains chemicals, all materials on this earth contain chemicals. To imply that plant ingredients are not chemicals is a basic and unscientific misrepresentation and also a mischaracterization of what is green chemistry. So let’s review what green chemistry means.

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New study in New Brunswick links cancer hotspots in communities to pollution, pesticides, heavy metal contamination

By Jake Cole

The Conservation Council of New Brunswick (CCNB) has released the results of a study investigating the cancer-environment connection in New Brunswick communities. This type of report has never been published before in Canada. While it is generally understood that areas with higher pollution rates make for higher cancer rates, no one has formally made the connection, at least not in this country. Among the startling results was this one: high rates of lung cancer in Saint John were more likely linked to occupational and environmental exposure to pollutants than to smoking.

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Hidden Beauty

By Suzanne Elston

The sale of cosmetics is big business in this country. According to Health Canada, we spend more than $5 billion annually on beauty products for our skin, hair, nails and teeth. This includes make-up, perfume, skin cream, nail polish and remover, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, deodorant and shaving creams and lotions.

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Why we don’t want or need refurbishment or new builds of nuclear reactors in Ontario

By Dorothy Goldin Rosenberg

Reactor Problems, Energy Alternatives and Policy implications

As Prevent Cancer Now is dedicated to preventing cancer from environmental and occupational sources and promoting a safe clean environment for all life on earth, nuclear facilities emitting ionizing radiation should be of great concern to everyone engaged in cancer prevention. This article argues that there should be no further refurbishment or new builds of reactors unless there is an absolute guarantee of safety. It focuses on reactor problems, energy alternative and policy implications.

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Important news about Prevent Cancer Now’s Facebook page

By PCN Staff

Did you know Facebook is phasing out all its older groups? Well it’s true and, unfortunately, it includes ours!

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Support Prevent Cancer Now Today – We Need You!

By PCN Staff

Please consider making a donation today to Prevent Cancer Now – we need you! Your donation will help us work towards eliminating the preventable causes of cancer, through education, advocacy and promotion of prevention research.

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PCN Shorts

By PCN Staff

Read up on some of the other stories we have been following!

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