As we progress in the 21st century, we find ourselves at a critical point and with very little time – years, not generations – in which to undo environmental damage. We must now think in terms of “sustained development” - using and managing resources and the environment to maintain a strong economy and preserve a healthy environment today and in the years to come.
The most important challenge we face today is lack of significant integrated eco-system management solutions to the overall sustainability & quality of the environment. The scientific community does not fully understand the risks that synthetic pesticides pose to our environment and our health. Many problems await potential solutions, which will be evaluated and demonstrated. It may take years of research to uncover the answers. The economics of potential solutions are also under scrutiny. Lack of training is also often cited as an obstacle to the wider adoption of sustained development practices. This includes development and adoption of “Integrated Pest Management” (IPM) strategies.
Frequently the knowledge or technology supporting new pest management solutions is in its infancy, and the economics appear unacceptable.
Economic judgments at this early stage can be premature, and may prevent IPM practitioners from implementing the programs that may turn out to be economical in the long run. Both long and short-term perspectives are in the best interests of the public, toward reducing environmental impacts and increasing adoption of IPM practices.
This is a topic with important applications to local government practices, and to public agency personnel whose job it is to make the experience of public places safe, enjoyable and pest free. In the long-term, everyone benefits from a healthier environment.
|“Often, when I have the opportunity to discuss the Santa Clara County’s IPM Program effort, I am asked if the current mission of the IPM program that of reducing pesticide use, is a good one. In response I offer the following: We must approach pest control as an integral component of our environment, our health, and our food safety. We must strive to assure our work meet defined standards, pursue quality improvement, and challenge excellence through continuous training & awareness in all aspects of integrated pest management.” - Naresh Duggal.|
Santa Clara County’s IPM Program website provides a technical platform for the diverse group of Eco-System managers (such as county department’s user groups as well as other public agencies, communities and industry) with access to information, tools and networks that maximize opportunities for pesticide reduction in Non-Crop Production Agriculture & Structural IPM Programs. It promotes pest prevention, minimize pesticide use and address issues that go beyond city or county boundaries.
All of us must do our part – government, industry, public interest groups, and individuals – at home, at school, at the workplace, while working, while playing, while traveling. It is time to re-examine our values, make thoughtful choices, and adjust our lifestyles to give more consideration to the environment. It is important for each one of us to act – not only for our children and ourselves, but also for future generations and for the other living things sharing the EARTH with us. We need to continue to work together.
The following sub-channels provide more details:
- Benefits of Integrated Pest Management
- Technical Advisory Group