Guatemala reviews U.S.-funded medfly spraying


Guatemala’s Environment and Natural Resources Ministry has begun reviewing the first-ever environmental-impact assessment here of a longstanding but highly controversial U.S.-funded program to eradicate Mediterranean fruit flies. Beekeepers, environmentalists and some politicians complain aerial pesticide spraying under the so-called Moscamed program causes massive die-offs of honeybees (Apis mellifera), harms local crops and has left hundreds of local farmers in financial ruin. Begun in 1975, Moscamed is a tri-national effort to fight the medfly (Ceratitis capitata), an agricultural pest, in the United States, Mexico and Guatemala. After program organizers pronounced the fly eradicated in Mexico in 1982, they focused on Guatemala. They released sterile medflies and sprayed in the southwestern part of the country during the January-to-June dry... [Log in to read more]

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