Funding to combat rhino beetle is lopsided - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Funding to combat rhino beetle is lopsided

Posted: Updated:

While Guam received funding from the US Department of Agriculture to help eradicate rhino beetles, the allocation of funds was rather disproportionate.

It has been almost eight years since the invasive rhino beetle was first discovered in Guam in 2007. When it was first discovered it was contained mainly in Tumon, but since then has spread to all corners of the island.

University of Guam president Dr. Robert Underwood said, "The folks at UOG are doing everything they can to help alleviate this, I know that a number of mayors are very interested in it." The village of Inarajan particularly has been investing time and money to research and combat the beetle, however, sourcing funding continues to be an obstacle.

Just recently, the USDA allocated $2.5 million to both Guam and Hawaii to aid this effort. "The good news is that they gave $2.5 million," Underwood noted. "The bad news is that they gave $2.2 million, or to Hawaii, and they gave us about $170,000, actually. "What we've done with it is advertise, Roland Quitugua has gone out and bought some nets, and he's trying to do as much as he can with it, but it's very disappointing."

Underwood states that Hawaii may have received almost all of the funding because the USDA wants to stem the spread of the beetles there, so they do not migrate to the US mainland. However, where does this leave Guam - the island facing the actual bulk of the rhino beetle infestation?

"The question is really about equity and your strategy. If you think that the strategy for fighting the rhino beetle is best fought where the infestation is, which is here in Guam, then I think you ought to put the bulk of your effort here," he added.

More resources would be needed for full eradication; otherwise Guam would likely be working toward containment instead. "I think a few well placed letters by some of our elected officials, not protesting but encouraging more attention to this on the Guam side, and on the Northern Marianas side I think will help us," said the president.

This may help Guam secure more funding from the USDA next year. UOG has also led an effort to create the Pacific Micronesia Biosecurity Plan, a plan to deal with invasive species that should be rolling out in the next couple weeks.

  • NEWS HEADLINESMore>>

  • Find awesome deals on the Shop Guam app

    Find awesome deals on the Shop Guam app

    It's the biggest shopping event in the Western Pacific, and it's back just in time for your holiday shopping needs. Take advantage of the over 300 offers and discounts during the Guam Visitors Bureau 6th Annual Shop Guam e-Festival. The campaign kicked off earlier this month and runs through February 2018. Download the Shop Guam mobile app, available on both iOS and Android Devices, for more information.More >>
    It's the biggest shopping event in the Western Pacific, and it's back just in time for your holiday shopping needs. Take advantage of the over 300 offers and discounts during the Guam Visitors Bureau 6th Annual Shop Guam e-Festival. The campaign kicked off earlier this month and runs through February 2018. Download the Shop Guam mobile app, available on both iOS and Android Devices, for more information.More >>
  • GFD back up to 8 operable ambulances

    GFD back up to 8 operable ambulances

    They respond to thousands of calls a year. With that being said, mechanical failures will happen from time to time, but the Guam Fire Department is back up to 8 ambulances serving the island daily. According to Fire Chief Joey San Nicolas, currently there are 2 that are serving as back up and 3 that are still undergoing repairs. "There's a rare occurrence that multiple units go down at the same time mostly for the same reasons- which is really air con units in the patient compar...More >>
    They respond to thousands of calls a year. With that being said, mechanical failures will happen from time to time, but the Guam Fire Department is back up to 8 ambulances serving the island daily. According to Fire Chief Joey San Nicolas, currently there are 2 that are serving as back up and 3 that are still undergoing repairs. "There's a rare occurrence that multiple units go down at the same time mostly for the same reasons- which is really air con units in the patient compar...More >>
  • Government wants full payment from Ray Charles Tedtaotao Camacho

    Government wants full payment from Ray Charles Tedtaotao Camacho

    It's a $750 wedding ring, but its significance and meaning, priceless. While Ray Charles Tedtaotao Camacho is serving life behind bars, the government argues he's not being held fully accountable for his crimes. Five years ago, Camacho kidnapped and raped Monique Baza after she made a quick run to the bakery for bread. Though it's a minimal amount for the ring that was never recovered, defense has motioned to waive restitution.  The government, in its response this week, argued ...More >>
    It's a $750 wedding ring, but its significance and meaning, priceless. While Ray Charles Tedtaotao Camacho is serving life behind bars, the government argues he's not being held fully accountable for his crimes. Five years ago, Camacho kidnapped and raped Monique Baza after she made a quick run to the bakery for bread. Though it's a minimal amount for the ring that was never recovered, defense has motioned to waive restitution.  The government, in its response this week, argued ...More >>
Powered by Frankly