Against Forest Service Spraying With Herbicides

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Editor:

It is bad when part of your own government (Forest Service), using your tax money, sprays you and your family and neighbors with deadly poison (Agent Orange Dow Silvex herbicides) and tells you it is OK.

This happened in a five-year period from 1965-1970 in Gila County. You and your neighbors have no place to go for help. Those who are charged with protecting your health and safety, ignore your pleas for help. You watch the devastation around you -- loved ones, pets and livestock and the wildlife -- bleed out of every body opening, suffer miscarriages, cancers and every physical disaster imaginable.

You're told it is OK and it really isn't happening. This can and will happen again in Gila County, in the near future. Does this get your attention?

The organization is the same (Forest Service). The people are different.

The method of spraying will be ground, not air. The names of the herbicides are different, but they all create similar devastation. You can stop this. Nothing is hidden now.

What the poisons do is well known. They weren't so well known in the 1960s. You can look them up on the Internet now. Educate yourselves. You have the power to stop this. But you need to take the time to contact those in power, your county Board of Supervisors. They are responsive. They just helped us south of Globe with a resolution to the Forest Service, telling them we don't want to be sprayed.

Locally, the Forest Service is planning to spray 38,000 acres with herbicides on both sides of Roosevelt Lake to get rid of "noxious" weeds (their term). The herbicides will get into the lake, into the fish, onto the boaters and onto the swimmers.

If you have a business dependent on the lake, think about it. They will blow all over with the winds and storms. Plants, bushes, trees will take them up from their roots and into their pollen. They will blow up to Payson.

They can travel for many miles. Herbicides should never touch or be around water. They attach to water molecules and never let go. They will lock into clay at Roosevelt and into the mud at the bottom of the lake. They will stay there for a hundred years. They will gradually wash all the way up to Phoenix, in people's drinking water, water for their evaporative coolers and bath water. Herbicides are absorbed into people's skin and lungs.

They will be in your dog's water. The cattle at Roosevelt will have herbicides in their fat. They will be shipped to market. And you would never know it. No one in power would have told you.

If one person hasn't accidentally heard and two people hadn't protested, you'd have never known. That is scary. Really scary.

Get together with your friends and neighbors. Educate yourselves. Share the knowledge. Let the Gila County Supervisors (928/425-3231) know you don't want herbicides sprayed. Call the Forest Service (602/225-5386) and tell them. And make sure they know. They will spray, if you don't. The herbicides they will use are on page 24 of the Forest Service Web Site at http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/tonto/home.shtml.

Nine of the 13 herbicides' toxicology can be found at: Northwest Coalition for Alternative to Pesticides, PO Box 1393, Eugene, OR 97440. Phone (541) 344-5044 or see http://www.pesticide.org. To read the toxicology, what they do to people and wildlife, makes for very scary reading. Thank you.

Geof Condit, Globe

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