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VEGREVILLE - June 22, 2004

The Department of National Defence (DND) is now better equipped to handle pest problems, both at home on Canadian bases and abroad, thanks to the Alberta Research Council (ARC). The corporation recently completed a contract to update the military's Integrated Pest Management Manual.

The manual helps DND personnel protect human health, property and assets from threats posed by animal, insect, and plant pests.

"Since the original manual was created in 1995, new pest control techniques have been developed that are more effective, as well as safer and less costly," says Dr. Paul Sharma, project leader and manager of ARC's Integrated Pest Management business unit. "For instance, revisions emphasize integrating ecological, chemical, and biological pest control methods, rather than relying solely on the use of chemicals."

Sharma, who alone offers more than 30 years of research experience in pest management, applied ARC's multidisciplinary strength in developing methods and products to managing pests in developing the new manual.

"The new guidelines reflect technological advances and regulatory changes," says Robert Cretain, DND project manager.

The project was a collaborative effort between ARC and DND. Each chapter in the manual was created by an ARC researcher teamed with a DND co-author who, together, sought out the latest information on pest control to incorporate into the new manual.

The ARC and DND teams also changed the format and structure of the manual. "We took this opportunity to create user friendly features, such as quick reference fact-sheets, with numerous photographs, for easy identification of pests and their effects," says Sharma. "Many of these changes were the result of surveys conducted of Canadian Forces base personnel."

The Alberta Research Council Inc. develops and commercializes technologies to give clients a competitive advantage. A leader in innovation, ARC provides solutions globally to the energy, life sciences, agriculture, environment, forestry and manufacturing sectors. ARC's Integrated Pest Management business unit offers access to highly skilled scientific expertise, research and diagnostic services, and state-of-the-art laboratories.
 

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For information or to arrange an interview, contact:

Dr. Paul Sharma
Manager, Integrated Pest Management,
Tel: (780) 632-8210
Valerie Golka
Communications Advisor
Tel: (780) 632-8409