A collaborative group called: Pesticide Free Guernsey launched this year which is a public private partnership between States of Guernsey Environment and Infrastructure committee, Guernsey Water and the charity, the Pollinator Project.
It aims to persuade everyone in Guernsey that they don’t need to use insect sprays, weed killer, slug pellets or anti fungal sprays, so we all realise that these chemicals kill far more than they are marketed for – and threaten our whole ecosystem. We’re saying that if people don’t use them we’ll have healthier gardens, land, wildlife and a thriving ecosystem – including our own health.
By everyone we mean gardeners, home owners, schools, growers, businesses and even the government.
Guernsey Water also launched an anti-glyphosate campaign called, “Don’t spray, there is a better way” warning people that if 65% increase in weed killer levels in our water supply in the last two years carries on, water bills may have to go up to treat the drinking water supply.
The States has said that they’d like to see a reduction in pesticides too and will audit which departments use any on States land.
We’re lucky to have Dr Miranda Bane who is from Guernsey and now a pollination ecologist run the second year of her science project in Guernsey, Herm and Sark to measure the volume of insects in gardens and meadows, which will show the effect of any reduction in pesticides over the next 5 years.
We’re also going out to land owners and gardening firms who are already pesticide-free and giving out ‘we’re going pesticide free’ signs so that word spreads.
We’ll also have advice for alternatives such as nematodes, vinegar spray, hand weeding and biodynamic gardening available soon.