USDA Takes Aim at Invasive Species with $48M Investment

Apr 03, 2014

The 2014 Farm Bill is being rolled out, which includes an allocation towards mitigating the introduction and spread of invasive pests.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) agreed to pledge $48.1 million towards invasive pest control projects, funds which are approved in the farm bill.

Government scientists peg the economic cost of invasive species to be approximately $120 billion annually.  

Highlights of some of the approved projects include:

• $2 million to tackle exotic fruit flies in California
• $270,907 towards honey bee research and identifying pests and disease threats
• $290,000 towards ongoing projects which involve noxious/invasive weed surveying
• $224,894 for the National Plant Board to develop a national strategy for nursery certification with respect to reducing the risk of plant diseases in nursery stock

There are approximately 383 projects in 49 states that will receive funding.

In addition to the funding announcement, the USDA declared April as Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month.

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