Video of the July 14, 2013 presentation debunking 'Invasion Biology'. You may show this set of videos of the presentation at community gatherings and may contact Don't Spray California to request speakers on wildfire and pesticides issues.
New from EON
Debunking 'Invasion Biology
On our Planetarian Perspectives Blog: http://www.planetarianperspectives.net/?p=1042
What's the connection between the "native plants restoration movement"and the pesticide industry?
Who is behind the deforestation and pesticiding of the East Bay Hills, killing over 486,000 trees from Richmond to Hayward, and doing the same to San Francisco’s beautifully forested Mt. Sutro?
Who benefits from a war on "non-native" species?
In this edition San Francisco Bay Area residents explore these questions with evolutionary biologist David Theodoropoulos in a public forum co-sponsored by DontSprayCalifornia.org and the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists – bfuu.org
David Theodoropoulos debunks the pseudoscience – and reveals the corporate agenda – driving the “native plants restoration movement”. He is the author of Invasion Biology: Critique of a Pseudoscience Published by Avvar Books, Blythe, California. ISBN 0-9708504-1-7 http://dtheo.org/InvasionBiology.htm
For facts, photos, and analysis of wildfire, tree decimation, pesticide issues, and who pulls the strings of the “native plant restoration movement,” visit the following websites:
Pt. 1 – INVASION BIOLOGY OR INTEGRATION BIOLOGY?
Maxina Ventura, East Bay Pesticide Alert, DontSprayCalifornia.org
Madeline Hovland, HillsConservationNetwork.org
Rupa Bose, SaveSutro.com
Pt. 2-A – INVASION BIOLOGY OR INTEGRATION BIOLOGY?
This is the First Half of David Theodoropoulos’ Presentation
Pt. 2-B – INVASION BIOLOGY OR INTEGRATION BIOLOGY?
The second half of David Theodoropoulos’ presentation.
Pt. 3 – INVASION BIOLOGY OR INTEGRATION BIOLOGY?
Closing remarks with
Maxina Ventura, East Bay Pesticide Alert, DontSprayCalifornia.org
Connie Barker, Environmental Health Network, ehnca.org
Steve Jacobson, EarthFirst.org
Marg Hall, Communities United in Defense of Olmstead, cuido.org
Discussion with David Theodoropoulos, dtheo.org
Compilation of FEMA comments that serve as a good primer for the history and details of these projects.
FEMA comments - compilation.pdf
To learn a lot, quickly, about the true nature of the native plant restoration movement which is fueled by the pesticide industry, go to the Milliontrees blog where you see a lot of photos, history, facts, and input from independent biologists and arborists: http://milliontrees.me
EAST BAY PESTICIDE ALERT
UC Berkeley has applied for FEMA grants in collaboration with the City of Oakland and East Bay Regional Park District which would remove close to one hundred thousand non-native trees from nearly 1,500 acres of public land. Thousands of gallons of herbicides would be used to prevent the non-native trees from resprouting and to try to eradicate what they call non-native vegetation. Twenty percent of the project area would be covered in as much as 2 feet of wood chips in addition to the trunks and limbs of the large trees that are destroyed. Prescribed burns would be done to burn excess wood and eradicate what they call non-native vegetation.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on proposed hazardous fire risk reduction activities in the East Bay Hills is now available for public review and comment. Comments on this document must be submitted by June 17, 2013.
You can access the draft EIS on the project website (http://ebheis.cdmims.com)
FEMA is welcoming public comments on the draft EIS through June 17th, 2013. You may submit written comments in several ways:
received on the draft EIS will be included in and addressed in the final
EIS. Reviewers have an obligation to structure their participation in the
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process so that it is meaningful
and alerts the agencies to the reviewers’ position and contentions. Comments
on the draft EIS should be specific and should address the adequacy of the
statement and the merits of the alternatives discussed (40 Code of Federal
Regulations (CFR) 1503.3)
East Bay Pesticide
Under the guise of fire safety, several agencies, including the University of California (UC) and the City of Oakland, are undertaking massive clearcutting of the East Bay Hills, involving extensive use of pesticides. The East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) has prepared a Final Environmental Impact Report for Wildfire Hazard Reduction and Resource Management, contributing further to the use of toxics and deforestation in our hills. The blue ring around the edge of the tree stumps in the picture above, is an example of such pesticide applications running off into the creek at the base of the stumps.
East Bay Pesticide Alert / Don’t Spray California’s Fall, 2010 opposition response to FEMA grant requests by UC; East Bay Regional Park District; and the city of Oakland for funds for what these agencies call ‘wildfire prevention projects’ which are, once again, ‘native plant restoration’ projects. This is a good overview of the relationship between tree decimation and pesticide use.
EBPA,DSC FEMA, UC, EBRPD,Oak.doc(Word document)
Up to one hundred thousand trees would be taken down, and pesticides applied, if these agencies had their way. We say: NO WAY! On April 20, 2010, the EBRPD Board voted to certify the EIR and prepare for implementation of their toxic plan, opening a 30-day window to legally challenge the EIR. Please support the Hills Conservation Network legal action:
Hills Conservation Network Request for Support
Tax-deductible contributions to the HCN Legal Fund may be sent to Hills Conservation Network, P.O.Box 5027, Berkeley, CA 94705, or contact email@example.com
EIR comments regarding herbicide flammability testing, provided by Cheriel Jensen of Protect Our Valley, Saratoga, CA
EBRPD Environmental Impact Report
EBRPD Wildfire Plan
Overview of UC Berkeley's Fire Mitigation Program at Strawberry Canyon
Residents of the East Bay Hills wonder if UC's clearing of land is done only under the guise of fire mitigation, with the real reason to make room for the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory expansion:
Map of proximity of UC's project to Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Maps of UC and EPRPD fire programs in the East Bay Hills
UC is also involved in a similar toxic logging project in San Francisco: Save Mount Sutro Forest
UC has a longstanding relationship with pesticide companies, such as Novartis, and Tom Klatt, the Manager of the UC Berkeley Office of Emergency Preparedness has steadfastly urged agencies and cities to use pesticides in the East Bay Hills. The latter was widely exposed in 2005 when both Tom Klatt, and Nancy Brownfield, EBRPD IPM Specialist, were urging the City of Oakland to add yet another exemption to the Oakland's sham of a pesticide ban, and use pesticides on the 1,000+ acres it oversees in the city's Wildfire Prevention Assessment District. Unbeknownst to us, while city officials were seemingly backing off their contested plans, they were quietly preparing to collaborate with UC Berkeley in an extensive "Fire Mitigation Program", contributing financially to a project that apparently violates the city's own regulations:
UC Berkeley's Fire Mitigation Program 2005 Annual Report (pdf)
Overview of some of the Fire Programs in the East Bay Hills
A Million Trees Reports on deforestation projects around the Bay Area, including clearcutting under the guise of fire prevention
In 2005, the City of Oakland, with the support of representatives of UC Berkeley and the East Bay Regional Park District, proposed the use of Roundup (glyphosate) and Garlon (triclopyr) for wildfire prevention. At the time, we provided all representatives with copies of toxicological profiles for these two pesticides, outlining their dangers to human health and ecology.
The following links are to toxicological information of some of the pesticides mentioned in the EBRPD Fire Plan:
Pesticide being sprayed in the EBRPD
Triclopyr Toxicological Profile (Garlon) (pdf)
Glyphosate (Roundup) Toxicology
Clopyralid Toxicological Profile (pdf)
Dicamba Toxicological Profile (pdf)
Additionally, as witnessed on UC pesticide notification signs, imazapyr may also be used as part of their project:
Imazapyr Toxicological Profile (pdf)
The pesticide use of these supposed fire prevention projects, is in addition to routine pesticide use by the EBRPD IPM Program:
EBRPD 2008 Annual Pesticide Report (pdf)
All of these pesticides also contain so-called "inert" ingredients, which are kept undisclosed, protected as "proprietary" by trade secret laws, are frequently even more toxic than the "active" ingredients listed on the label, and are specifically designed to interact synergistically to achieve greater toxicity than each chemical by itself.
Unidentified Inert Ingredients in Pesticides: Implications for Human and Environmental Health - Cox and Surgan (pdf)
The Impacts of Chemical Mixtures - Our Stolen Future
Synergism by Ingrid Pollyak
While government agencies and pesticide manufacturers downplay the importance of synergism, this essay, by a teen who homeschools, illustrates that understanding synergistic effects of chemicals does not require a Ph.D.
As can be seen on UC Berkeley's pesticide notification signs, as well as the UC Berkeley 2005 program report, pesticides are being mixed together, compounding the dangers.
The dangers of chemical exposure are commonly downplayed with statements that the quantities of their poison are miniscule, with pesticide manufacturers and legislators going to great lengths to agree on just how much poison is legally acceptable to let loose on our environment. But in addition to synergistic and cumulative effects of chemical mixtures, some chemicals have a "nonmonotonic" dose-response, where reducing the dose of the chemical does not result in a reduction, but an increase in toxic effects.
The Low Down on Low-Dose Endocrine Disruptors (pdf)
Rather than contribute to greater public safety, these fire plans actually add greater hazards, including damaging health effects from pesticide exposure on park workers, visitors, and wildlife. Concern about such pesticide exposure on EBRPD lands has been expressed by AFSCME Local 2428, the union of the East Bay parks workers, in their opposition to the LBAM Program. Additional hazards include erosion and mudslides from cleared land, as well as greater fire danger from dying, dry vegetation resulting from the use of herbicides, and flammability of the chemicals themselves.
For many more photos of the environmental damage from the logging and pesticide applications in the East Bay Hills, please see the website of the Hills Conservation Network, another organization opposing the Fire projects:
Hills Conservation Network
We have seen repeatedly that native plant restoration projects are being masqueraded as wildfire prevention projects and more insidiously, taxpayer self-assessments along with tax-supplied grants are being sold to taxpayers as necessary for wildfire safety. We hear ad nauseum from EPRPD in this DEIR about their fixation with getting rid of what they refer to as non-native plants. But Invasion Biologists have differing scientific opinions on when species have reached acclimation, at which point even trying to remove them can pose biological danger.
David Theodoropoulos, an Invasion Biologist who is very critical of his field, and points to the historic involvement of the pesticide industry in establishing invasive species councils to do their bidding, shows photos of eucalyptus in the Oakland hills during the 1991 fire, in areas where the understory had been kept down.
EBRPD claims that "Invasive plants are harmful, non-native plants" and "Invasive species have no natural enemies in the environment". These are irrational, and just plain inaccurate claims. Species become naturalized. Some native plants can be quite invasive. Many predator species are generalists who'll eat just about anything. The irony of largely European descendents and other pilgrims to this country, vilifying "invasive", "non-native", "exotic" species, and claiming that native species must be defended from them by dumping toxics everywhere and killing living things, is not lost on immigrants and indigenous people alike.
Under the guise of protecting the hills from supposed fire danger from non-native, so-called "invasive" species, these projects in fact threaten the biodiversity and native ecology of the hills. While suppressing fires in specific situations can save lives, preventing wildfires in a wildfire zone dooms fire-dependent species, which have evolved there, to extinction.
Wildfire areas, by definition, are potential habitat of fire-dependent species. Pallid Manzanita is native to our East Bay Hills, has evolved there, is listed as an endangered species, and cannot exist naturally without wildfire. As such, wildfire prevention in and of itself, regardless of the methods, has significant impacts on all fire-dependent species, and represents a threat to their continued existence. Wildfire prevention is not a sustainable or ecologically sound practice.