California officials yank controversial urban spraying plan
California officials have announced that they will not spray the urban Bay Area with a pheromone this summer, delighting activists who had campaigned strenuously against the plan. The pheromone with the ominous name CheckMate LBAM-F keeps the crop-gobbling light brown apple moth from reproducing, but also has been linked to complaints of respiratory trouble in humans. Spraying had already been banned in one county pending environmental review. As part of the new moth-attacking strategy, officials will attempt to deter moth reproduction by introducing millions of sterile moths; the change of plans had nothing to do with loud public outcry, officials insist, but is thanks to scientific advances that have increased the availability of non-reproducing moths. Aerial spraying will still occur in rural areas.