Veda Federighi, 916/445-3974
Glenn Brank, 916/445-3970
January 22, 1999 (99-02)
(News editors: Grants are going to projects in Alameda, Butte, Colusa, Contra Costa, Fresno, Glenn, Imperial, Kern, Kings, Lake, Madera, Mendocino, Merced, Monterey, Orange, Placer, Riverside, Sacramento, San Benito, San Diego, San Joaquin, San Luis Obispo, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Siskiyou, Sonoma, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Ventura, Yolo, and Yuba counties. A recipient list is attached.)
SACRAMENTO--Cal/EPA's Department of Pesticide Regulation has awarded $722,731 to support 28 innovative projects that promote environmentally-friendly pest management techniques.
DPR awarded grants totaling $338,450 to 13 demonstration projects. Another 15 grants designated for applied research received $384,281. Recipients were chosen from among 73 proposals to the Department's 1999 Pest Management Grants program. Individual grants ranged from about $9,000 to $30,000. The wide-ranging projects include:
- Developing alternatives to methyl bromide fumigation for nurseries and strawberry growers in Monterey and Santa Cruz counties;
- Educating urban residents of San Mateo County on pest control techniques that reduce the risk of pesticide runoff from homes and gardens;
- Establishing school gardens in Berkeley and Oakland to grow fresh vegetables for low-income children while educating them in ecology, food and agriculture; and
- Replacing use of conventional pesticides with "mating disruption" techniques that interfere with pest life cycles in apple orchards (Contra Costa County) and pear orchards (Mendocino County).
"This is the fourth group of awards for our Pest Management grant program," said DPR Chief Deputy Director Jean-Mari Peltier. "While these 28 projects offer an impressive variety of research and demonstration work, all share the same worthy goals -- promoting reduced-risk pest management strategies, developing least-toxic methods and increasing protection for Californians and our environment."
"California farmers work hand-in-hand with nature on a daily basis," said William "Bill" Lyons Jr., Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). "These grants will help our growers develop more tools to protect our environment and maintain their world leadership in the production of food and fiber."
Grant awards were recommended by the Pest Management Advisory Committee (PMAC), co-founded by CDFA and DPR to promote reduced-risk pest management. The PMAC includes representatives from conventional agriculture, organic farming, government agencies, environmental groups, the University of California, and California State University. "The program's success is due in large part to the PMAC's efforts, and we are grateful to the committee members for their hard work," said Peltier.
Since 1996, DPR has awarded more than $2.7 million for reduced-risk pest management projects.
This year, in addition to Pest Management Grants, DPR plans to award approximately $750,000 to continue the Pest Management Alliance Program. It will support larger scale efforts in applied research and demonstration projects for integrated pest management. IPM stresses the application of biological, mechanical, and cultural pest control techniques. Pesticides are used only when needed to achieve acceptable levels of pest control, and with the least possible impact on non-target organisms and the environment.
DPR is one of six departments and boards within Cal/EPA.
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