Letter: 'A Chemical Reaction' hits home in Yarmouth

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I had the privilege of participating in last week’s showing of Paul Tukey’s movie, “A Chemical Reaction,” in Yarmouth. Paul’s enthusiasm for making changes to open space and lawn care practices is inspiring and critically important.

When I survey my immediate neighborhood, there are some recent worrisome health developments: Out of 13 year-round residences, two new cases of asthma, three deaths caused by cancer, three other people currently being treated or just finishing treatment for cancer, and then my own auto immune disorder caused by a toxic environmental injury eight years ago. Can we really afford exposure to more chemicals?

I am not an environmental saint, as I am just learning how my own behaviors contribute to an unhealthy environment. I have also learned, though, that by using pesticides on our yards, the damage we are causing to our own health, and, equally important, the health of our environment is far more reaching than we realize.

I am asking everyone to take stock of how we manage our homes and our properties. I call on our town and state governments to ban the use of all pesticides and inorganic chemicals on public lands.

Thanks, Paul Tukey, for helping me realize that we can make a difference.

Paul Knoll