Guam- Senator Chris Duenas has introduced a measure to establish the Invasive Species Council to provide a quick and coordinated response to the threats posed by non-native plants and animals that arrive on our shores.
Last year, the Camacho Administration created the council through executive order, but no source of funding was provided.
Bill 111, would not only provide funding says Duenas, but it would establish a Bio-Security Division and create a rapid response team to address invasive species problems right away.
“What it also does is it provides a funding source” said Duenas. “So that not just the council is put into place, but you have actual cash to stand up the staff that’s going to be needed and required under the Department of Agriculture and the University of Guam to be able to enforce and do the inspections and ensure that we really aggressively go after invasive species.”
The funding source would come from a one dollar fee per ton of cargo coming into Guam’s port. This money will start up the division and will led to future federal funding to maintain support of bio-security efforts.
The Department of Agriculture estimates that in the last 10 years, at least 25 invasive species have decimated vegetation around Guam. Among them, the “Canopy Vine” which has led to soil erosion.