Remember the state’s 2007 proposal to spray pesticides out of airplanes onto ten million people in an attempt to kill the apple moth, an insect that scientists say has been in California for decades and has never done significant crop damage?
Four local moms quickly took action and formed MOMAS (formerly, Mothers of Marin Against the Spray) to help successfully stop the state from this unnecessary and dangerous mass pesticide spraying. MOMAS also joined several other health and science organizations, along with the City of San Francisco, in a lawsuit against the state.
Unfortunately, a recent court ruling allows the California Department of Food & Agriculture (CDFA) to spray pesticides for the apple moth anywhere, anytime, with no notice to the people who will get sprayed. This spray first, think (and inform) later attitude is routine for the CDFA. Just this summer CDFA sprayed backyards in Sacramento before any public meeting about the spraying occurred and before the agency website had any information. Less toxic alternatives existed, but were not meaningfully explored.
And the apple moth spraying may be just the start. As our invasive pests blog entry below explains, CDFA is preparing to seek approval to spray pesticides for a long list of other insects anywhere in California, without notice and without any proof that these sprays are necessary or even work.
Take action now! Tell CDFA that letting people know about spraying before it happens needs to be standard agency policy!
We can stop the pesticide spraying and pressure state officials to use less toxic methods, but we need your help. Please sign today! It only takes a minute.
By: Debbie Friedman
Debbie Friedman is the steering committee co-chair and a co-founder of MOMS Advocating Sustainability. Debbie is an attorney who practiced business law in San Francisco prior to having children. After the birth of her two children, Debbie shifted her focus to environmental work and worked as a producer for the nationally syndicated radio program EcoTalk Radio, and as a communications consultant for GreenWave Strategies. Debbie was selected in 2011 as a “Marin Hero for Children,” by Marin Advocates for Children. She received a BA with highest honors at UCSB and JD at Hastings College of the Law.