Friday, April 07, 2006

Inspect the Unexpected

A few years ago, San Mateo County inspectors recorded more than 2000 different pest organisms from inspections done at San Francisco International Airport and area nurseries. Last year that number was down to 275. But there is no celebration going on amongst the agricultural inspectors - the 80% drop in discovery of introduced species is attributed to a 50% reduction in funding for the inspection program. That's right - according to this report at Inside Bay Area, California has cut funding from $5.5 million per year to only $1 million per year for the entire state. There are currently efforts underway to raise the funding up to $17 million per year, which suggests that even with $5.5 million, the state wasn't getting good coverage. A Discover article from 1993 notes that the medfly (Ceratitis capitata) invasion cost California more than $170 million.

No comments: