Canada’s highest court unanimously confirms legitimacy of municipal power to enact pesticide bylaws under general health and welfare provisions to enact bylaws in response to local concerns.
After a ten year path through the courts, the Hudson, Quebec pesticide by-law withstood successive legal challenges from two lawn-spraying companies. After losing at two levels of the Quebec courts, on appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada, in June of 2001 the highest court unanimously affirmed the legal power of Hudson, and most Canadian municipalities, to pass pesticide by-laws. CELA intervened in the Hudson appeal on its own behalf and representing nine citizen and environmental organizations and one individual. In complementary interventions, CELA worked alongside the Sierra Legal Defence Fund who represented three organizations in the appeal, including the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.
Below are legal submissions and related media release about this precedent-setting case. For our related law reform efforts see: Law Reform: Banning Cosmetic Pesticide Use.
Photo credit: Mark Surman