Santa Monica’s Assembly Member’s Richard Bloom AB 1788
By Keldine Hull
On July 9 at 9 a.m., Assembly Member Richard Bloom of California’s 50th Assembly District, alongside Senator Henry Stern, held a press conference to discuss key legislation to protect California wildlife from toxic rat poisons.
According to the Center for Biological Diversity (the Center), a recent state analysis found rodenticides in more than 85 percent of tested endangered Pacific fishers, bobcats and mountain lions. P-47, a three-year-old mountain lion in the Santa Monica Mountains, passed away with six different anticoagulants used in rat poisons in its system.
Co-authored by Bloom, a resident of Santa Monica, Stern and Assemblymember Laura Friedman, the California Ecosystems Protection Act, or AB 1788, would ban the use of First Generation Anticoagulant Rodenticides (FGARs) and Second Generation Anticoagulant Rodenticides (SGARs) on all state-owned lands throughout California. According to a press release from the Center, the bill provides for use of these products for agriculture purposes and during public health emergencies.
The bill’s co-sponsors, the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF), the Center and Raptors are the Solution (RATS), were also in attendance at the press conference. RATS president Lisa Owens-Vanini said, “We thank the senators who recognized today that contaminating California’s ecosystems with rat poison is not acceptable and that anticoagulant rat poisons are causing great harm to the state’s wildlife. We’re hopeful Governor Newsom will sign this bill into law.”
After the press conference, AB 1788 moved into the final stretch for approval following a nearly unanimous committee vote at the Senate Natural Resources and Water Committee hearing.