Agricultural pesticide use dropped by 10 million pounds in California last year — a bit of progress offset by an increased use of fumigants by strawberry growers. In addition, application of commercial pesticides for uses such as landscaping and mosquito control increased. California “works hard to promote least-toxic pest management” says Mary-Ann Warmerdam of the state Department of Pesticide Regulation, and “our efforts are paying off.” But, she adds, “we have more work to do.”

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