Learn About Health Risks Associated with Pesticides

The Wellesley Board of Selectmen have designated May 27, 2018, as Rachel Carson Day to commemorate the birthday of the famous ecologist who launched the modern environmental movement with her book Silent Spring in 1962. In a proclamation released today, the Board of Selectmen call on fellow Wellesley citizens to remember Rachel Carson’s life and legacy, and to join together to strengthen the protections of our health and the sustainability of our homes, schools, neighborhoods, communities.

To launch this call to action, the Wellesley Natural Resources Commission is joining other town departments and community volunteer organizations to hold two health-focused events in May to promote the inspiring example set by Rachel Carson.

Carson’s book Silent Spring documented the environmental dangers of pesticide use and ultimately resulted in the banning of the pesticide DDT. Though many people sought to discredit her work, Carson continued to speak out against the dangers of pesticides and the largely unregulated chemical industry until her death in 1964. However, fifty-five years later, pesticides and herbicides are still used on lawns in Wellesley.

Last year, the NRC launched the Grow Green Wellesley initiative to alert residents to the dangers of using chemicals on their lawns and to encourage them to switch to organic methods. As part of the continuing Grow Green Wellesley initiative and using Rachel Carson Day as a springboard, the following FREE activities are planned for the month of May:

Movie Night: “A Chemical Reaction: The Story of True Green Revolution”
May 16 at 7 PM, Wakelin Room – Wellesley Free Library
A screening and discussion of this 2009 film about a Canadian community that banned lawn chemicals after a local dermatologist noticed a connection between her patients’ health and their exposure to pesticides and herbicides, and the tremendous legal battle waged by the big chemical industry. Information about organic landscape professionals and earth-friendly lawn and landscape techniques will be available. Birthday cake honoring Rachel Carson and popcorn will be provided. Sponsored by the NRC, Heath Department, Department of Public Works, Sustainable Wellesley, and Wellesley Cancer Prevention Project.

Celebrate Rachel Carson in the Wellesley Veterans’ Parade
Sunday, May 20 at 1 PM
The theme, “Your Lawn, Your Health” remembers Rachel Carson and includes the NRC, Sustainable Energy Committee (SEC), Sustainable Wellesley and other environmental groups marching together to encourage healthy lawn care and landscaping methods.

For more information, contact the Natural Resources Commission, nrc@wellesleyma.gov.

Phyllis Theermann

Sunday, May 6, 2018, at 2 PM
Wellesley Free Library in the Wakelin Room


Learn the hows and whys of healthy, earth- and animal-friendly eating and cooking with Victoria Moran, bestselling author, national speaker, podcaster, and two-time guest on Oprah, whose new book, co-authored with JL Fields, is The Main Street Vegan Academy Cookbook: Over 100 Plant-Sourced Recipes Plus Practical Tips.


Victoria is the author of twelve books, including Creating a Charmed Life (in 30 languages,) The Love-Powered Diet, the iconic Main Street Vegan, and The Good Karma Diet: Eat Gently, Feel Amazing, Age in Slow Motion. Her college thesis became Compassion the Ultimate Ethic: An Exploration of Veganism, originally published in 1985 and the first work on vegan philosophy and practice to come from a major publisher.

Victoria is founder and director of Main Street Vegan Academy, training and certifying vegan lifestyle coaches. Her  new cookbook, and her classic Main Street Vegan, both will be available for purchase and signing.

Then learn to make three enticing recipes from the cookbook! Diana Goldman, creator of Beantown Kitchen, is a recipe contributor to the cookbook, and a Main Street Vegan Lifestyle Coach and Educator. Diana will demonstrate preparation of a delicious hot entree, a dessert, and a scrumptious dip, with tasting samples!

Please sign up to help plan for tasting samples.

All are welcome to this free program sponsored by the Boston Vegetarian Society and Wellesley Free Library. The library is wheelchair accessible, has plenty of free parking and is accessible by public transportation -take the commuter rail Framingham/Worcester Line from Back Bay or South Station. Get off at Wellesley Square. It is then a 3/10 mile walk to the library.


Phyllis Theermann

Photo Courtesy of PSR- Physicians for Social Responsibility

Dr. Regina La Rocque, a Wellesley resident and physician at MGH, will be speaking on Wednesday, April 4 at 6:30 pm in the Science Center room 278 at Wellesley College about the relationship between climate change and our health.

Regina LaRocque has an MD from Duke University School of Medicine and an MPH from Harvard School of Public Health. She completed her training in internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and her fellowship in infectious diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital. She is on staff at the Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Infectious Diseases and is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. She has performed laboratory and clinical research for 15 years in the fields of travel medicine and enteric infections. She has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters. She was elected to the Natural Resources Commission in Wellesley, Massachusetts in 2017. She is concerned about the impact of climate change on human health and the spread of infectious diseases.

Dr. LaRocque has been advocating on a variety of sustainability topics including gas leaks and clean energy. Learn what you can do next.