Herbicide Summary

The most recent herbicide figures that have been released are for 2006. In Shasta County alone, 79,596 lbs. of various toxic pesticides, including herbicides, were dumped on timber/forest land. This represents nearly 22% of the total 371,317 lbs. of chemical pesticides that were used in the county. There has been a steady increase in recent years of the total chemicals applied for forestry in Shasta County. In 1989, 3,699 pounds of chemicals were reported used for forestry in Shasta county; in 2000, 22,232 lbs.; in 2004, 28,578 lbs. In 2005, this nearly doubled to 57,355 lbs. and in 2006--with 18 different reported substances--79,596 lbs. of chemicals were applied to the forests of the county. This represents a 21 times increase in the amount used for forestry in the county since 1989. The 18 substances include chemicals that when combined together become highly toxic and may be carcinogenic.

In the area in which i live, there have been 5 separate Timber Harvest Plans carried out since 2000 that are contiguous and represent 7,486 acres. 6,110 of those acres have been or will be clearcut, or 82% of the acreage area. There are 6 smaller creeks that are tributaries of Battle Creek in the 7,486 acres of timber harvest and they comprise a majority of the Battle Creek watershed. Many of the Timber Harvest units are on the banks of these creeks. The owner of these acres, Sierra Pacific Industries, has used the CALwater 2.2 subwatershed delineation system to avoid disclosing the cumulative impacts of their clearcutting and herbicide usage.

Additionally, the legal requirements for reporting herbicide usage only require that the usage is reported to the Department of Pesticide Regulation in Sacramento by the 10th of the month following the application. There are no requirements to notify the public before aerial or any other kind of spraying. The only information the public can get requires long distance calling and being shuffled through an automated phone system that is likely to disconnect. If one can actually make it through the maze, the legal township and range and section that is being inquired about needs to be known also. At that point, one can find out what they or their organic crops or their food producing animals were exposed to a few weeks before, after it's a done deal.

Here are some more figures from forestry pesticide usage in Shasta county. Note this is pesticide use, which includes herbicides, adjuvants, strychnine, etc.

2006: 79,596
2005: 57,355
2004: 28,578
2003: 23,478
2002: 30,953
2001: 25,044
2000: 22,232
1999: 39,661
1998: 45,436
1997: 58,151

Ten year average = 41,048
Usage in 2006 represents an increase of nearly twice as much as the ten year average.

3,699 lbs reported in 1989; usage in 2006 represents nearly 22 x increase.

Select Shasta county under "Indexed by commodity" then when the PDF file opens, scroll down to "forest, timberland"....it is a sickening report, but I am thankful that we are one of a tiny handful of states in the entire US that has such a report.

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