1. The LBAM is not a threat to agricultural products because it has no history of doing extensive crop damage.
2. The only threat to growers is a trade quarantine that exists only because the U.S. Department of Agriculture made poor decisions decades ago and could correct the problem with a policy change.
3. Fear has been falsely planted by Kawamura, causing the Monterey County Farm Bureau and state Chamber of Commerce to act hastily on misinformation. Not only is eradication unnecessary, but some scientists say it is impossible.
Won’t the LBAM damage hundreds of crops? Evidence and some scientists say “No.”
In Santa Cruz County, which has more LBAMs than the rest of the state, zero crop damage has been found.
In New Zealand, the LBAM has become a minor pest. A report by Dr. Daniel Harder, adjunct professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of California-Santa Cruz, and Dr. Jim Walker, technical research scientist for Hort Research in New Zealand, said, “Hawkes Bay horticultural researchers report that … if LBAM were controlled,
… the maximum damage caused by LBAM would be 1 percent or less of crops.”Isn’t the quarantine real and valid? It may be real, but not valid.
The USDA protected U.S. growers by incorrectly classifying the LBAM when it was in Australia and New Zealand. Now Canada and Mexico follow the USDA zero-risk trade policy, refusing to buy some U.S. products. The advice of UC-Davis entomology professor James Carey to the California Assembly’s Committee on Agriculture was to “consider more realistic trade policy, consider non-zero risk.”
Fear, in the form of gross exaggeration of the LBAM problem, caused growers to believe the LBAM must be eradicated. Carey is the author of three books on insect demography. In his testimony to the Assembly Ag Committee on March 12, he said, “The population growth model presented by the (state agriculture department) would not be taken seriously by any editor of any entomology or ecology journal in the world.” By the state estimate, Carey said there would already be 50 moths per square inch in Berkeley, a total of two thousand trillion moths. Nevertheless, he said that eradication with or without spraying pheromones is impossible and that ground crews should be used to “control” the LBAM. This is a repeat of what happened in New Zealand, following widespread reaction against the conduct of the aerial spraying plan. We should learn from New Zealand’s experience.
Because the state threat is exaggerated, can be removed by a USDA policy change, and cannot succeed, Californians must demand that the state terminate any plans to spray.
Evidently, current plans to spray have been stopped thanks to public resistance! Can we say, GOTCHA?
A reader just sent the following compilation, which details the amount of funds the CDFA can access if it “is able to establish and maintain an emergency status and resulting eradication effort for this moth.”
LBAM Eradication Program – A Fraudulent Program.
1. The Light Brown Apple Moth (LBAM) is not a significant pest.
any more than thousands of other insects including 300 moths in California that are routinely monitored, but do not require any treatment, unless some balance goes out of control, generally caused by a pesticide induced kill-off of their predators. European Union doesn’t even monitor LBAM. They just live there like ants or crickets live here, and like over 80 other moths in LBAM’s exact family that already live here too. After 30-50 years we see that LBAM is already well balanced in nature being eaten by the same predators as its cousins: birds, earwigs, spiders, beetles, etc.
2. The Light Brown Apple Moth has been in California about 30-50 years.
Looking at location spread and population density of the LBAM in California and scientifically comparing it to other moth movement and then adjusting for specific LBAM characteristics.
3. LBAM has done NO damage in California
CDFA confirms that, courts have ruled that, no one denies it.
4. LBAM in California requires NO treatment, certainly not eradication.
Based on #3 and #4 above, and so much supporting independent scientific information.
6. It is impossible to eradicate the LBAM and there is no reason to.
Maybe, if all the people were moved out of the entire state of California and all remaining life in California was exterminated, that might do it, but even that is not certain as such an experiment has never been performed. It would be similar to trying to eradicate ants or cockroaches. It simply cannot be done.
7. The CDFA created a huge charade using science like a shell game. There is probably not a single independent Entomologist in the state that thinks that LBAM can be eradicated from California. CDFA handpicked a group of people on their Technical Working Group. Most are willing to consider only the information that CDFA provides them and many have an interest in the program proceeding. Independent Scientists with alternate known opinions were intentionally and aggressively left off. The University of California recently offered a panel of experts to look at the eradication program of LBAM, but CDFA refused.
8. There is no problem managing LBAM as 100’s of other pests. New Zealand has shown how successful that is given they are forced to ship their goods to the U.S. with a zero tolerance for LBAM. They successfully use modern safe integrated pest management techniques, so their methods control LBAM, while they are controlling many other more significant pests.
9. But CDFA needs an “Eradication program to obtain the emergency funding.
a. That included an aerial spray of pesticide over populated areas.
b. CDFA claimed aerial spray as a state of the art technology using pheromones, a less toxic alternative that the people had asked for.
c. True, toxic synthetic pheromone based pesticides are preferred in agriculture fields to the more toxic WWII derivatives, but not sprayed over people and intentionally left to stay time released into the air for 24 hours per day every day until they spray again.
d. Tens of thousands got sick of which over 643 managed to get an illness report filed when no one wanted to accept a report. An 11-month-old boy, perfectly healthy son of an air force major, went into respiratory arrest following the spray. He was airlifted out and his life was saved at a Stanford Hospital and he will likely be on steroid cocktails now for the rest of his life to keep his airway clear.
e. CDFA had reports done using only the information that the CDFA gave to the analysts and then the results were manipulated to tell the public that there were no links found between the spray and the illnesses, when in fact, the relationships between the spray and the illnesses could not be disproved by even their own manipulated reports.
f. CDFA claimed that the window for eradication was only months and that they could not wait to do an Environmental Impact Report.
g. CDFA claimed that aerial spray was the ONLY method of eradication.
h. Stewart Resnick had recently purchased the chemical company that won the contract for the aerial spray pesticide. Resnick, a life long democrat, had given Governor Schwarzenegger $144,600 for his reelection campaign, and Resnick is connected to previous USDA reviews of this same moth that worked in Resnick’s favor.
10. After Santa Cruz and Monterey Superior Courts ruled CDFA had violated the emergency exemption of CEQA law, after 31 cities representing 2.4 million people passed resolutions against the spray, after 90 additional labor unions, school boards and other organizations passed resolutions against the spray, after almost all elected officials in the region took positions against the spray, after bills to stop the spray finally made it through committee, after the governor did a 180 degree turn and requested that they not use the spray, the CDFA created another lie and on June 19 announced: based on a sudden science breakthrough, they were now going to discontinue the aerial spray over populated areas and instead use a release of sterile moths.
a. Up to that moment, only aerial spray was possible to eradicate the LBAM per CDFA.
b. Sterile release of moths has never been successful eradicating a moth on this earth.
c. CDFA announced the sterile release testing will start in 2009 and be fully operational in 2011, but CDFA never mentioned that was inconsistent with their previous information that their window of opportunity to eradicate the moth was just months.
d. Sterile moth release has never eradicated any moth, and for LBAM, there are even further reasons it cannot possibly work:
– LBAM males guard over female pupae and mate when the female matures to a moth.
– LBAM females are promiscuous mating multiple times.
– LBAM females will live longer to successfully mate in order to produce their eggs.
– This method has never been tested.
– To rely on this method, therefore, is beyond absurd in science.
e. Releasing 20 million sterile moths per day could interfere with the natural balance involving predators and ultimately cause serious problems with unlimited numbers of other insects and pests.
11. CDFA needs a full-speed-ahead eradication program to keep the money flowing.
a. CDFA needs lots of activity and hoopla to substantiate just this years approximate $100 million that was already allocated to the LBAM emergency within the aerial program.
b. Previously, every item of CDFA’s fraudulent eradication program that was documented was refuted by qualified independent scientists.
c. Now, after the announcement of the sterile moth scientific breakthrough, and to avoid independent scientist review, CDFA is representing their eradication as a tool box of methods containing many tools that they alone know which one to use under which circumstance, and they are no longer detailing or documenting any of them. This strategy successfully avoids scientific review, since scientists generally want to review a written document rather than verbal statements made by PR people to the media, etc.
d. At least one tool in their box, splatting, is more toxic than the aerial spray. Combinations of permethrin and synthetic pheromone attached to 3,000 fixed objects in each square mile of populated areas, such that the chemicals permeate the same air children breath 24 hours per day, and maintained that way with repetitive applications.
e. This means that people will live between 0 and 45 feet away from a poison source 24 hours of their day, whether they are at home, work, school, the park, the playground, the pool, etc. The air is permeated from these poison sources. The poison source is cancer causing and a reproductive effector in that it affects the ability to reproduce, and it impacts newborn survivability and impacts pregnancy loss. It can cause genetic damage as demonstrated in a lab study using human cells and women on farms using permethrin get asthma at higher rates than those not exposed to permethrin; and permethrin is more dangerous for children than adults. These problems do not include the effects of toxic synthetic pheromone pesticide or the effects of the two in combination, the manner in which they will be deployed.
f. Mobile fogging is totally unknown to the public at this time, but there is no limit that the CDFA will put on themselves, nor is there any amount of dishonesty, intentional deception or harm to children and people generally that they will avoid to accomplish garnering the funds that an emergency eradication can provide them.
g. A proper management program of LBAM and other insects will simply not bring any additional funds to their normal annual budget. The LBAM “Eradication” represents a potential increase in their annual funding of approximately 40%.
Recent videos relating to the newly packaged fraudulent LBAM eradication program:
1. State Drops Plan For Bay Area Moth Spraying 3 minutes, 1 second June 19, 2008 first video.
2. Daniel Harder, Ph.D. Executive Director, The Arboretum, University of California at Santa Cruz. LINK June 23, 2008. 14 minutes, 2 seconds