Senator Chuck Schumer sees $22 million in fight against invasive spotted lanternfly threatening New York

Senator Chuck Schumer wants to squash the spotted lanternfly with the help of an additional $22 million in federal funding.

As swarms of the invasive species were spotted across New York, the local Democrat Sunday outlined a plan for the United States Department of Agriculture to get the extra dough to control invasive pests like the lanternfly, using at least some of that money becomes New York to help destroy the plant-sucking bugs.

Swarms of spotted lanternflies have been spotted in Central Park in the Big Apple, at wineries on Long Island, and on farms in the backcountry. The lanternfly leeches sap from plants, which can leave vegetation at increased risk of becoming infected with other diseases and pests.

Speaking at a news conference near Central Park, Schumer warned that if the species is not controlled, New York’s economy could take a major hit.

“The spotted lanternfly is no longer just a threat to New York, it’s here and ready for its close-up,” Schumer said in a statement. “For years I have been warning about the pest, but today we are calling for action here because parts of New York City, Long Island and the upstate are now infested with the invasive beetle that is devastating trees, vineyards and crops.

“This is a multi-million dollar threat to New York’s economy – both tourism and agriculture are now at risk if the spotted lanternfly is left unchecked,” he said. “But the good news here is that we have already committed federal funding that I have secured to help New York contain the bug and we will be pushing for more.”

Swarms of spotted lanternflies have been spotted in Central Park in the Big Apple, at wineries on Long Island, and on farms in the backcountry.
Swarms of spotted lanternflies have been spotted in Central Park in the Big Apple, at wineries on Long Island, and on farms in the backcountry.
Brigitte Stelzer
Twenty boroughs of New York are part of a sanctuary established by the state in connection with the war on the spotted lanternfly.
Twenty boroughs of New York are part of a sanctuary established by the state in connection with the war on the spotted lanternfly.
Brigitte Stelzer

The state Department of Environmental Protection conducts capture surveys and monitors spotted lanternfly populations while educating the public about the lanternfly and how to report and kill them to the state.

The Department of Agriculture and Markets also issued a quarantine that would restrict goods brought into New York from affected areas in Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia.

Twenty New York counties are part of a sanctuary established by the state associated with the war on the spotted lanternfly, including Bronx, Queens, Richmond, Suffolk, Westchester, Putnam, and Rockland counties.

The zones allow the state DEC and other stakeholders to respond quickly to the spotted lanternfly threat in those areas.

https://nypost.com/2022/08/14/sen-chuck-schumer-eyes-22m-in-fight-against-invasive-spotted-lanternfly-that-threatens-ny/ Senator Chuck Schumer sees $22 million in fight against invasive spotted lanternfly threatening New York

JACLYN DIAZ

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