Wednesday, December 06, 2006


Dear Fellow Reformer,

Earlier this year we warned you about a bill in Congress that would
revive controversial research on the use of toxic, mold-like fungi
called mycoherbicides
to kill illicit drug crops in other countries.
This provision could unleash an environmental disaster of monumental
proportions. But Congressman Mark Souder and Senators Hatch and Biden
are rushing it to the House and Senate floors this week. Here are
three things you can do:

1) Call your two U.S. Senators and one U.S. Representative today or tomorrow.

If you don't know who they are, simply call the Capitol Switchboard
at (202) 224-3121 and give them your address. They'll connect you
directly with their offices. You can also look them up online at
here and here

When you get a staffer on the phone, politely say something like:

"My name is [your name] and I live in [your city]. I'm calling to
urge [the Senator or Representative] to oppose the ONDCP
Reauthorization bill if it comes to the floor this week, especially
its mycoherbicide provision. Please let me know how [the
Senator/Representative] votes."

If they ask, the mycoherbicide section is Section 1111. The bill
being brought to the floor is a combination of a House and Senate
bill, so it doesn't have a bill number yet. It will be brought to the
Senate floor under a unanimous consent agreement and to the House
floor under suspension of the rules--both of which limit debate.

2) Phone calls are the most effective way of stopping this bill. But
if you don't feel comfortable making calls or you don't have the
time, we urge you to fax or e-mail your elected officials instead.
You can contact your two Senators
here and your Representative

3) Please forward this alert to everyone you know. Unless thousands
of Americans contact Congress, this bill could pass by the end of this week.


Mycoherbicides have already been extensively studied over the last
thirty years - and the results make it clear that they are not an
option for controlling crops of coca or opium poppies. They attack
indiscriminately, destroying fruit and vegetable crops, and sickening
animals and humans as well. The toxins mycoherbicides produce
contaminate soil for years, so that nothing can grow where they have
been. Mycoherbicides are so destructive that governments have even
stockpiled them as weapons!

Incredibly, the proposal now before Congress advocates using
mycoherbicides in "field studies" in countries such as Colombia and
Afghanistan - something the world would certainly see as an act of
biological warfare.

Office of National Drug Control Policy head John Walters spoke out
against further mycoherbicide research last year, but this terrible
proposal is now part of the ONDCP Reauthorization Act.

For more information on mycoherbicides, read the recent report
commissioned by DPA, "Repeating Mistakes of the Past: Another
Mycoherbicide Research Bill" (PDF: ).

Here's the full text of the mycoherbicide provision in the ONDCP
Reauthorization Act:

Sec. 1111 Requirement for Scientific Study of Mycoherbicide in
Illicit Drug Crop Eradication

Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this act, the
Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy shall submit
to the Congress a report that includes a plan to conduct, on an
expedited basis, a scientific study of the use of mycoherbicide as a
means of illicit drug crop elimination by an appropriate Government
scientific research entity, include a complete and thorough
scientific peer review. The study shall include an evaluation of the
likely human health and environmental impacts of mycoherbicides
derived from fungus naturally existing in the soil.

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