Bummer: “Environmentally Friendly” Herbicide Kills Trees

Sometimes, the irony linked to the theory of unintended consequences decides to proclaim itself with a bullhorn

A recently approved herbicide called Imprelis, widely used by landscapers because it was thought to be environmentally friendly, has emerged as the leading suspect in the deaths of thousands of Norway spruce, eastern white pine and other trees on lawns and golf courses across the country. (snip)

The E.P.A. has begun gathering information on the deaths from state officials and DuPont as well as through its own investigators. “E.P.A. is taking this very seriously,” the agency said in a statement. (snip)

“It’s been devastating,” said Matt Coats, service manager for Underwood Nursery in Adrian, Mich. “We’ve made 1,000 applications and had 350 complaints of dead trees, and it’s climbing. I’ve done nothing for the last three weeks but deal with angry customers.”

“We’re seeing some trees doing O.K. with just the tips getting brown, and others are completely dead and it looks like someone took a flamethrower to them,” Mr. Coats said. (snip)

The chemical name of the product is aminocyclopyrachlor, one of a new class of herbicides that has been viewed as safer than earlier weed killers.

Is it really more “environmentally friendly”? It’s supposed to be safer for mammals, but, what about bugs and amphibians and birds? Of course, this is the problem with the whole “environmentally friendly” meme: sometimes, they aren’t. I’m not saying that this one isn’t, it could have been used improperly, or there could have been something else in play, but, I’ve caught stories at Treehugger and other environmental sites (yes, I do read them and often agree with them, it’s just the globull warming stuff I take issue with) about “green” products not being so actual green.

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2 Responses to “Bummer: “Environmentally Friendly” Herbicide Kills Trees”

  1. captainfish says:

    They tried an environmentally way of killing??

    Is that like killing death row felons using a pain-free non-lethal lethal mixture?

  2. david7134 says:

    Are you saying that if you take a substance meant to kill plants and apply it to a plant that the plant will die? My God, the government figured this out by themselves!! Maybe, if they keep up this type of progress, they will figure out that the reason we can’t recover from the depression is because of government spending, taxes, rule, regulations, interference, laws, lawsuits and every other obstacle that they throw our way.

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