This amendment is based on a joint brief from the Canadian Environmental Law Association, the David Suzuki Foundation, Ecojustice Canada, Environmental Defence and Équiterre. This amendment is necessary to ensure that the minister will make public any decision not to initiate a special review that would otherwise be required when an OECD member country prohibits all uses of a pesticide.
Subsection 17(2) of the Pest Control Products Act mandates a special review if an OECD member country prohibits all uses of a pesticide for health or environmental reasons.
Proposed subsection 17.1(2) would introduce an exception allowing the health minister discretion to determine whether additional information is available that warrants a special review under section 17(2) of the act. With no clear criteria set out for making such a determination and no notice or consultation requirement, this provision lacks transparency and could prevent appropriate consideration of the environmental and health information that another jurisdiction relied on in deciding to prohibit all uses of a pesticide. This lack of transparency runs contrary to efforts to enhance confidence in Canada's pesticide regulatory system.