CDFA PREPARING ENVIRONMENTAL REPORT FOR PIERCE'S DISEASE CONTROL PROGRAM
SACRAMENTO-The California Department of Food and Agriculture is preparing an Environmental Impact Report for the Pierce's Disease Control Program, a coordinated statewide program that prevents severe agricultural and economic damage due to Pierce's Disease, spread by the glassy-winged sharpshooter.
Pierce's Disease infects grape vines, effectively choking the tissues that deliver water and nutrients throughout the plant. Infected vines usually die within a few years. The disease has been present in California at relatively low levels for decades, but is cause for heightened concern because the glassy-winged sharpshooter, newly arrived from the southeastern U.S. and northern Mexico, can spread it much more rapidly than native insects. The program is designed to contain the spread of the disease and the insects until researchers find an effective treatment or cure.
The Pierce's Disease Control Program began with the passage of SB 671 on May 16, 2000, which created the program under emergency provisions. The program includes five major elements: public outreach and education, statewide survey and detection, containing the spread of the insect and disease, rapid response to new infestations, and research to generate a long-term solution.
The environmental impact review process will begin with regional public meetings in mid-April to give the public an opportunity to comment on the scope, focus and content of the report. The meetings are scheduled as follows: