Herrera joins legal challenge to California's apple moth eradication program
Lawsuit by cities and health, environmental and mothers' groups charges that environmental analysis is fundamentally flawed
SAN FRANCISCO (April 22, 2010) -- City Attorney Dennis Herrera today announced that the City and County of San Francisco has joined a coalition of cities and health, environmental and mothers' groups in a lawsuit suit challenging the California Department of Food and Agriculture's light brown apple moth eradication program. The civil lawsuit filed in Alameda County Superior Court today-on the 40th anniversary of the first Earth Day-charges that the Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Report for the controversial program is not based on sound science, and is invalidated because of last-minute changes in the objective of the program from eradicating to merely controlling the moth-a change CDFA made after the EIR was finished. As a result, the EIR fails to examine a range of alternatives as required by law, including a "no-action" alternative as well as minimally toxic or non-toxic methods targeted as control and not eradication treatments.
In joining the lawsuit, Herrera issued the following statement:
"The California Department of Food and Agriculture has produced an environmental impact report that raises many more questions than it answers," said Herrera. "After combing through this document, it is literally impossible to say with certainty what CDFA plans to do, or when and where it plans to do it. To confuse matters further, the eradication program under review was subsequently morphed into a 'control, contain and suppress' program-whatever that means. CEQA exists to make sure Californians are fully informed about the risks posed by projects like this on the environment and public health. CDFA has clearly fallen short of that legal requirement. San Francisco has grave concerns about the potential adverse health consequences of this controversial program, and we're grateful for the opportunity to join with other municipalities and interest groups to make sure all of our concerns are addressed."
# # #