Overview of DPR's Pest Management Alliance Program

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As part of its Strategic Plan, the Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) promotes the development and adoption of pest management practices that reduce the overall risk from the use of pesticides. DPR’s efforts are part of a broader objective by the California Environmental Protection Agency to encourage pollution prevention. The Pest Management Strategy, created in 1995 by DPR staff and diverse stakeholders, also directs DPR to spread information about reduced-risk practices and provide incentives to adopt them. DPR initiates preventive programs that are voluntary, economically sound, and effective in solving environmental and human-health problems.

DPR's Pest Management Alliance program provides funding support, when funds become available, to encourage increased implementation of biologically intensive reduced-risk pest management. This program is designed to create a collaborative, interdisciplinary team that uses a systems approach-the assumption is that team members have already solved pest problems and other specialized components through applied research. The Alliance is part of a problem-solving continuum, taking the data collected from research and preparing for the next stage-education through demonstration, and ultimately implementation.

The Alliance, which was established in 1998, is designed to help commodity groups, schools, and cities address some of the more important pest management issues on a statewide scale. The Alliance is unique in that it is devoted to reducing pesticide risks, while at the same time, establishing a dialog with DPR. Agricultural and nonagricultural groups are encouraged to submit proposals for reduced-risk projects to address key areas of concern-those that demonstrate alternatives to highly toxic pesticides, protect surface and ground water quality, develop IPM programs for public schools and other public buildings, and develop alternative reduced-risk approaches for urban pest management. The Alliance promotes a concept of voluntary cooperative problem solving, which creates a climate where growers and urban and suburban residents are better informed and more willing to try to implement the reduced-risk practices that work.