Gov. Schwarzenegger calls for ‘halt’ to aerial spraying

[Ed. note: The New York Times is finally covering 4/25/08) the light brown apple moth and the government’s response.]

On the heels of this morning’s ruling by a Santa Cruz county judge to stop aerial spraying for the light brown apple moth in that county until the completion of an environmental impact report, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger today announced a suspension—until August 17—of the spraying for the moth state-wide…until, he says, there’s more investigation into the health affects of the as-yet-untested product being used. Oddly enough for us up here in the Bay Area, aerial spraying wasn’t scheduled to start until August, anyway. In the state’s press release the governor ‘says’ this:

I am confident that Continue Reading


LBAM report out: pheromones over Alameda

When I first heard of the light brown apple moth, I promised myself I’d never use the LBAM acronym—because who calls a little brown moth “LBAM?” It’s goofy. But there it is, up there in the headline, in all its space-saving goofiness.

The state has released its report on whether the spraying of Checkmate (synthetic moth pheromones in plastic ‘microcapsules’ for time release) in Monterey and Santa Cruz counties last fall caused illnesses. Chris Metinko’s story about the findings is here. It is no surprise that the state found there was not enough evidence to conclusively Continue Reading


California Secretary of Agriculture Kawamura visits Alameda to defend moth spray program

At last night’s city council meeting—after a brief presentation on California’s strategy to control the Light Brown Apple Moth—a couple of dozen Alameda citizens stepped up to challenge the plan to spray an as-yet-unformulated concoction on Bay Area cities and towns.

While the politics of the situation are intriguing—the ’emergency’ which allows government agencies to sidestep normal health and safety requirements, the fact that the manufacturer of the synthetic pheromones is a Schwarzenegger campaign donor, and, too, that the state recently had to cancel a $500,000, no-bid PR contract to promote the spray—the basic facts remain the same: Continue Reading