Aerial Spraying in Santa Cruz – Yikes!

I was innocently listening to news headlines on Democracy Now this morning (if such a thing is actually possible), when I heard this:

In California, a judge has given the green light to a controversial pesticide spraying in Santa Cruz County. On Thursday, Superior Court judge Paul Burdick rejected the county?s restraining order because he said it could not prove the spraying would harm the public. The chemical, Checkmate LBAM-F, will be used to halt the light brown apple moth. Checkmate?s manufacturer, Oregan-based Suterra, has refused to release the ingredients of the pesticide and petitioned the courts to keep them secret. One hundred residents on the Monterry Peninsula reported respiratory illness after a similar chemical was sprayed there in September.

SPROING! What's up with that? Well, our local paper The Santa Cruz Sentinel confirms it:

A trio of state-owned planes will begin spraying a pesticide next week in Santa Cruz County to halt the spread of the light brown apple moth, an invasive pest the state says is capable of causing millions of dollars in crop damage if it is not stopped soon.

Aerial maps from the California Department of Agriculture confirm that Santa Cruz city and CatSynth HQ are probably in the spray zone, and that spraying will occur overnight starting Sunday November 4 through the following Friday (barring rain or other weather that will cause delays).

So OK, just stay indoors, keep our pets indoors, and don't eat anything off the trees for a couple of days, right? Unfortunately, I cannot find a specific advisory of any sort, just notice of the time and location of spraying. Indeed, the biggest problems here are that the health effects, and even the chemical composition of the pesticides, aren't publicly known:

Since similar spraying began on the Monterey Peninsula in September, residents have opposed the aerial spraying because nobody, not even scientists, knows what kind of health effects the pesticide, CheckMate LBAM-F, is capable of having on people…

Fortunately, Luna is an indoor cat. But what about open windows? And what about outdoor animals (strays, farm animals, wildlife)? Unlike some of the folks on the Sentinel's discussion board, we at CatSynth try not to get hysterical about such things, but we would like answers to a few rational questions. For me, it would simply be enough to have more information on health and safety. A simple advisory to stay indoors, and how to protect animals and children, would have been enough. And if there is no reason for such an advisory, say so, and back it up with some data.

Meanwhile, I guess we'll just take our best reasonable guess and stay inside…

and let's NOT crack open a window!

4 thoughts on “Aerial Spraying in Santa Cruz – Yikes!

  1. I Dare You!
    Yes, It is ME, Anastasia! Karl was thoughtful enough to put the Dare out on the Day of the Dead, so I can come personally! And if you don't accept the challenge, I might just come again and haunt you, Hahahahahahahahaha!

    P.S. The maid listened to Dem Now today too and got mad! The Spraying is pretty much INSANE and the law in Oklahoma to let people DIE if they are illegal immigrants… This country is in SERIOUS trouble!!!!

  2. I fear for the people and animals outside. I hope that everyone will keep their pets inside with windows and doors closed when they spray. Gov't should change the insecticide to something safer for humans and animals.

  3. "… could not prove the spraying would harm the public." WHAT? How about proving that the spraying is safe? Stay inside is right.

  4. Morons, unless you plan on staying inside for 30 days it won't do any good. That's how long it takes for this chemical to break down. AND they plan on spraying for years to come – there is no end date. So don't kid yourself. Move to Alaska. And BTW, our so-called liberal environmental democrats in Santa Cruz did NOTHING to prevent this. Their no better than the repubs. A bunch of ass holes.

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