Washington, D.C., February 26, 2019 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is announcing the availability of an environmental assessment (EA) for the biological control of Brazilian peppertree for public review and comment. The Brazilian peppertree is an invasive species that poses a serious threat to the biodiversity of ecosystems in various southern States, but particularly in Florida where it impacts the Everglades and other natural areas and wetlands. The EA considers the effects of two insects—Calophya latifoceps and Pseudophilothrips ichini—released as biological control agents to reduce the severity of Brazilian peppertree infestations.
APHIS invites the public to review and comment on the EA by March 29, 2019. You may view the EA here https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/02/27/2019-03322/environmental-assessments-availability-etc-release-of-biological-control-of-brazilian-peppertree. Beginning tomorrow the public will be able to submit comments at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2018-0075.