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U.S. EPA awards $1 million to reduce pesticide risk, promote natural pest solutions/ California grants will promote effective and environmentally sensitive approaches to pest management

Release Date: 12/04/2008
Contact Information: Mary Simms, 415-947-4270,

(12/4/2008 -- SAN FRANCISCO) The U.S. Environmental Protection agency is awarding grants totaling nearly $1 million nationwide to fund five innovative projects that will use integrated pest management approaches aimed at successfully reducing pesticide risk.

Integrated pest management promotes natural pest solutions -- creating a healthier environment able to sustain itself with less reliance on chemicals. It’s an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to pest management that relies on a combination of common-sense practices.

The California 2008 Pesticide Registration Improvement Renewal Act Partnership Grant recipients are:

    • California Department of Pesticide Regulation (Sacramento): $159,494 for “Reducing Volatile Organic Compound Emissions from Pesticide Use in Nuts and Tree Fruit Orchards in California’s San Joaquin Valley.”

    This project will reduce surface water runoff and volatile organic compound emissions from pesticide use in almond, peach, and walnut (nut and tree fruit) orchards in California’s northern San Joaquin Valley. Almond, walnut, and peach orchards encompass 324,000 acres and contribute $1.1 billion to the agricultural economy. Pesticides used to produce these crops are found in surface water, and VOCs from pesticide applications contribute to reduced air quality in the project area.

    • Central Coast Vineyard Team (Paso Robles): $225,000 for “Reducing Pesticide Risk through the Adoption of Integrated Farming Practices in Central Coast Vineyards and Marketing Certified Sustainable Products.”

    This project will support in-field research and demonstration of alternatives to high-risk pesticides used in vineyards, outreach and education programs, and marketing and distribution programs for wines made with Certified Sustainable Grown grapes. The project will also educate and guide growers towards reduced risk farming alternatives, increase the use of integrated farming systems through the implementation of self-assessment using “Certified Sustainable Standards,” and educate the public and trade on the environmental and economic benefits of products that are “Certified Sustainable.”

    Both grants will support the demonstration of innovative IPM practices, technologies, outreach and education. In selecting grant awards, EPA emphasized projects that address:

    Alternatives to soil fumigants and azinphos methyl, a pesticide used on orchard fruit, nuts and other crops
    IPM strategies for watersheds with pesticides in surface waters
    IPM in schools, daycare, and hospitals
    Adoption of biopesticides or reduced-risk pesticides
    Methods for measuring IPM adoption or the reduction of risks associated with pesticide use
    Business cases for implementing IPM

    The funding for these grants was authorized by the Pesticide Registration Improvement Renewal Act.

    For more information and a full list of all the grant recipients, please visit