California Pesticide Notification Pilot Falls Short
Updated: Nov 7, 2022
**Action Alert** Email the CDPR (ProjectNotify@cdpr.ca.gov) before November 14, tell them a better system for pre-notifications of pesticide use is important to our rural communities!
If you lived next to a farm that sprayed pesticides like RoundUp, wouldn't you want to be notified in advance? It's no fun to get caught in a cloud of pesticide drift while taking a walk or gardening outside, and wouldn't you want to close your windows?
Farms are not required to notify before they spray, even when they are next to schools, neighborhoods, or senior centers.
In our Graton Research Project, we found evidence of pesticide drift at all of our residential sample sites. Sprayed pesticides routinely travel up to a mile away from their intended target. Families who live and work near conventional agriculture have a higher risk of developmental delays, behavioral problems, and other chronic disease like cancer. Did you know that over 100 public schools in Sonoma County are within 1/4 miles of a farm that sprays pesticides?
The California Department of Pesticide Regulation (CDPR) spent $10M to study the feasibility of agricultural notifications and the project has been very disappointing. The pesticide use information has only been selectively transparent, it has not been provided in multiple languages, and it often only includes one class of pesticides. Public workshops were only provided in Southern California, completely missing the agricultural regions in Sonoma and Napa Counties. None of the pilots provided information on what/when/where pesticides would be applied because farmers argued that "there would be protests" if the public knew what they were doing. It's time to shine a light on modern conventional agricultural practices!
Please help us advocate for more protective measures by sending an email before November 15th to ProjectNotify@cdpr.ca.gov. You can also provide testimony at the CDPR virtual workshop on November 10th (5-7pm).
Virtual: Thursday, November 10 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Zoom (Link: zoom.us/j/85867200295?pwd=ZGNIMlJOVnFCTEp4VVVsRzBnbmpGQT09; Meeting ID: 858 6720 0295; Passcode: 750189; Call In Number: +1-669-900-9128)
Suggested talking points:
Hello, my name is _____ and I am a _____ (farmworker, advocate, concerned citizen) commenting on the serious failures of the pesticide notification pilots that must be addressed before implementing a statewide notification system. In my opinion, for the pilots and statewide notification system, CDPR must:
1. Provide exact location of where pesticides will be applied, so that people can take steps needed to protect themselves. 2. Establish a fully transparent website that displays all planned pesticide applications and is available to everyone and not just residents of a particular neighborhood. 3. Post notices of intent to apply restricted pesticides now, but also notify about other harmful pesticides, beyond restricted ones, including Prop 65, BeeWhere, and others identified by scientists. 4. Post notification information in multiple languages, including but not limited to Spanish, Mixteco, Zapoteco and Triqui. 5. Create an option for opt-in alerts through email or text without needing to provide a name or address. 6. Include maps, graphics and links to safety data. 7. Include at least 72-hour advanced notice. 8. Establish an environmental justice advisory committee to guide the development of a statewide pesticide notification system. 9. Bring working groups for residents and farmworkers to locations in Northern California, in particular Sonoma and Napa Counties.
For more information please see the CDPR website: https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/CADPR/bulletins/33562f9
Thank you so much for helping us tell our state regulators that safer pesticide use guidelines are important to agricultural communities!