VICTORIA, B.C. – The Provincial government announced a temporary ban on the sale and use of second-generation rodenticides.

Effective July 21st, the sale and use of second-generation anticoagulant rodenticides (SGARS) is prohibited for a period of 18 months.

Pesticides are federally regulated by Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Authority, which evaluates the risks to people and the environment before a formula can be sold in Canada.

The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy will conduct a scientific review and look to promote alternative rodenticides. By reviewing practices in other jurisdictions, recommendations for future policy will be made.

“We share the concerns of many British Columbians that rodenticide use is harming, and too often killing, birds, pets and other wildlife,” said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy.

“That is why we are taking action to reduce risks, conduct a review and step up our efforts to reduce unnecessary pesticide use, rather than safer alternatives.”

According to the ministry, SGARS are more powerful than the previous generation of rodenticides, increasing the risk of secondary poisoning of other animals that consume poisoned rodents.

“Thousands of British Columbians have voiced their concerns over the use of rodenticides and the harmful impacts they have on owls and other animals,” said Deanna Pfeifer of the Rodenticide Free B.C. campaign.

“I am pleased to know the minister is acknowledging the detrimental effects rodenticides can have on our ecosystem and look forward to an increased awareness of alternative pest management approaches that are safer, more humane and more effective in the long term.”

There are exemptions to the temporary ban for operations that use rodenticides for agricultural production and food safety. Further, health services like hospitals, food processing facilities, restaurants and grocery stores are also exempt.