Invasive Species Policy Archive
Executive Order 13112 and Related Documents
National Invasive Species Management Plan and Related Documents
Federal Invasive Species Policy Resources
Invasive Species Recommendations and Action Plans
Transition to Green: Leading the Way to a Healthy Environment, a Green Economy, and a Sustainable Future
US Government Accountability Office Reports
Natural Resources: Opportunities Exist to Enhance Federal Participation in Collaborative Efforts to Reduce Conflicts and Improve Natural Resource Conditions
Wildlife Refuges: Changes in Funding, Staffing, and Other Factors Create Concerns about Future Sustainability
Federal Programs that Get Dollars to the Ground to Support State and Local Invasive Species Management
Invasive Plants and the Farm Bill Workshop
In 2005 and 2006, Farm Bill Forums were held by the US Department of Agriculture to solicit public input on the formulation of the 2007 Farm Bill. Invasive plant management was identified as a key issue for future programs. Because invasive plants may affect conservation programs in many ways, a critical need for scientific recommendations addressing invasive plants in the context of the farm bill was recognized.
In March 2007, the Center for Invasive Species Management (formerly the Center for Invasive Plant Management) was invited by congressional staff to provide science-based recommendations for the farm bill. CISM held a workshop for invited scientists who considered invasive plant impacts on wildlife, water quality, water quantity, production, and wetlands. They assessed the state of the science relevant to farm bill conservation programs, considered implications for future management, and developed the following recommendations.
- Elevate invasive plant management as a critical conservation concern in the 2007 Farm Security and Rural Investment Act (Farm Bill). Invasive plants can change soil properties and reduce soil stability and productivity, alter natural hydrologic regimes, degrade wildlife and migratory bird habitat, degrade wetlands, and alter fire regimes.
- Prioritize funding for USDA conservationists and technical advisors working with invasive plants and require comprehensive training of technical service providers who may be consulted regarding invasive plants, site- and ecosystem-appropriate vegetation, and management strategies.
- Prioritize prevention and early detection of invasive plants. Invasive plant prevention is more cost-effective, efficient, and successful than management of invaded habitats.
- Make maintenance and restoration of biodiversity an explicit program objective. Diverse plant communities are more stable, more consistently productive, and, in concept, may sequester more carbon due to diverse life forms.
- Prohibit using invasive plants for biofuel production on Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands and elsewhere to avoid spreading invasive plants. Furthermore, plants considered for biofuels production should be screened for invasive traits.
- Allow haying, mowing, burning, and grazing to manage invasive plants. All actions should be NRCS-approved and strategically timed to manage wildlife habitat, allow reproduction of native birds and other wildlife, remove decadent vegetation, and provide other ecological benefits.
- Expand program eligibility to include non-producers. Invasive plants on non-agricultural lands can threaten the productivity of agricultural lands and the integrity of wildlife habitat.
- Provide increased incentives for long-term, multi-stakeholder efforts to prevent or manage invasive plants at multiple spatial scales. Cooperative weed management engages more people and is more sustainable than single-landowner and single-stakeholder efforts.
- Invasive plants should be explicitly excluded from definitions of "appropriate vegetative cover." Define "appropriate vegetative cover" as species deemed appropriate by NRCS Ecological Site Descriptions.
- Require monitoring of land-condition indicators and management effects to provide a basis for management adaptations and program accountability. Long-term data are essential to evaluate program effectiveness and determine future strategies.
Dr. Sara Baer, Southern Illinois University; Dr. Terrance Bidwell, Oklahoma State University; Dr. David Engle, Iowa State University; Dr. Johannes Knops, University of Nebraska; Dr. Kenneth Langeland, University of Florida; Dr. Bruce Maxwell, Montana State University; Dr. Fabian Menalled, Montana State University; Dr. Steve Whisenant, Texas A&M University
From Science, September 2006
From the Intermountain Noxious Weed Advisory Council
Prepared by CISM