On the evening of Thursday, October 19, 2017, at Tannins Wine Bar in Elmhurst, Illinois, the Midwest Pesticide Action Center (MPAC), an organization that works in the Midwest to reduce the health risks and environmental impact of pesticides by promoting safer alternatives, fundraised and celebrated their accomplishments over the last year. One of MPAC's celebrated accomplishments included working with Commissioner Frank Avila to reduce herbicide application to MWRD property by at least 92%. Commissioner Avila was honored by receiving the Midwest Pesticide Action Center 2017 Leadership Award.
Upon adoption of this policy, the District stopped using any synthetic herbicide to control weeds in turf landscape, shrub beds, and paved areas. The District instead uses natural herbicides or mechanical methods, such as mowing, to control weeds in turf landscape, shrub beds, and paved areas.
According to the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, almost 5 billion pounds of glyphosate, the active ingredient in herbicides, have been applied to land in the U.S. since 1974. Human health consequences from glyphosate exposure includes various nervous, behavioral, endocrine, immune, and reproductive system disorders.
MPAC's leadership makes the work of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District that much easier by reducing the amount of chemicals and pollutants that enter our precious water supply. Commissioner Avila was honored to receive this award and looks forward to continuing an MPAC partnership.