Party Resolutions

Resolution 2017-001: To ban or regulate the aerial application of herbicides and pesticides on all public and private lands in the State of Oregon.

Sponsored by: David McCall (SCC Delegate, Tillamook County) in consultation with the DPO Environmental Caucus. Approved: 03/26/2017


WHEREAS, despite achievements made in the protection of clean water, air, and soil which have resulted in improved sustainability in Oregon’s environment, the State of Oregon has failed to adequately address the pollution of coastal waterways, as required by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Coastal Nonpoint Pollution Program (1990);

WHEREAS, we acknowledge that many industrial-strength herbicides and pesticides, as used by Oregon’s wood products and agricultural industries, as well as urban gardeners, can be deadly to most plant and animal species, and several are known carcinogens;

WHEREAS, we acknowledge that the aerial application of these chemicals cannot be accomplished with 100% accuracy. Spray drift may occur whereby chemicals intended for one area are carried by winds to other, unintended areas. There have been several documented incidents in recent years of illnesses to humans, livestock and pets, as well as contamination of crops and residential gardens by misdirected chemical sprays from aircraft;

WHEREAS, federal agencies banned the aerial spraying of pesticides on federal lands in western Oregon more than thirty years ago;

WHEREAS, Oregon has the smallest forestry-specific water resource buffers for the aerial application of pesticides, and does not have prescriptive technology or weather-related best management practices;

WHEREAS, regulations in Oregon require only a 60-foot buffer zone for homes and schools and 100-foot for salmon-bearing waterways, 300-foot buffer zones from salmon-supporting waters for certain pesticides applied during aerial applications, while Washington requires 200- to 325-foot buffers and an environmental assessment;

WHEREAS, the majority of Oregonians value clean air and water quality;


Section 1. To support legislation more strictly regulating the aerial and other application of all herbicides and pesticides on all public and private lands in Oregon.

Section 2. To support legislation prescribing that the aerial application of herbicides and pesticides include adequate buffer zones of at least 325 feet from any residential structure or active waterway, and

Section 3. To support legislation requiring that all occupants within 2,500 feet of the spray area must be notified in writing of the specific spray date and time at least 15 days before the aerial application of any herbicide or pesticide, including the provision of in time notifications in coordination with local emergency management and/or law enforcement agencies.

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