Invasion of grasshoppers in Sardinia: after fields and farms, now the insects arrive in the houses. The mayor: “Send us the Army”

They started with the pasturethen they moved on to fields cultivated. Countless and greedy, they have devoured everything and they went as far as i centers inhabited. Attacking flowers and lemons. Carrying distressafter having nullified the work of shepherds e farmers, even among the owners of commercial activities. There Sardinia continues to deal with the invasion of grasshoppers. Inexorable, from the beginning of spring, the “celiferous”They are destroying the countryside and now they can also be seen in the gardens: start from the plain of Ottana, in the Nuorese area, they reached as far as some centers of the Sassarese and Oristano areas. An invasion that began in 2019, which tripled in 2021 to tenfold this year. A disaster.

THE ANGER OF THE MAYORS – Franco Saba, mayor of Ottana, repeats aloud a thought that expresses his discouragement well: “These are the worst days of my administrative life. It could not be otherwise, when there is an invasion also in center inhabitedwhere for obvious reasons it is not easy to do the disinfestationwhen you see them on the 131 (the important connecting artery that crosses the island from Cagliari to Porto Torres) and you begin to feel the concern of those who manage a bar or a pizzeria “. And again: “When you are faced with the despair of farmers and shepherds, assist powerless to the devastation of their work. What can I say? We have been fighting since 2019: perhaps we got off to a good start, but the size of the phenomenon, men and means in the field were not numerically adequate to stem in time a phenomenon that has progressively affected 100 thousand hectares. Do we realize how much it is? “.

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But the mayor of the center Nuoresealthough aware of the failure of the plan put in place by Region, he does not want to make the list of the guilty: “It is not necessary. Now there is a need for solutions immediate, to avoid having to face an emergency without remedy in the future “. What is needed, he and the mayors of Bolotana, Sedilo, Noragugume and del Goceano, also reiterated this on Monday during the meeting with the regional councilors for the Environment (Gianni Lampis) and Agriculture (Gabriella Murgia) as well as with the teams in the field (the regional agency laore and the experts of the University of Sassari): “Now there is a commitment to form the technical table, but this must materialize with the endowment of men, means and funds – urges the mayor of Ottana – that the intervention ofArmy, in order to be able to work even at night, when the climatic conditions are more favorable and the interventions would certainly be more effective. The problem must be addressed at 360 degrees, otherwise next year we will be point and head. And we can’t afford it “.

THE REQUEST TO FAO – Rita Zaruat the helm of the municipal administration of Noragugumehas also come to ask for the intervention of Fao. “I don’t like sensational actions – said the mayor – but I am convinced that in one critic situation like this, it is useful to have more forces on the field. Given the complexity of the phenomenon, and considering i climate changes and the risk that the phenomenon also affects other regions, it would be important to have further advice, without wanting to discredit the work done so far by the other forces in the field or launch myself into an unproductive witch hunt “. An appeal to which Maurizio Martina – Deputy Director General of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization – responded by claiming that he had activated with the Ministry of Agricultural Policies to initiate contact between Fao offices and experts committed to tackling the phenomenon in other areas of the world. There remains the unknown of times, always long when it comes to bureaucracy. “That is why in the meantime it is essential to deliver immediately refreshments: we must arrive at tomorrow by overcoming today, we need immediacy to allow companies on their knees to get back on their feet. We are on the side of the territory and we will also work to rethink our way of relate with the earth “.

THE THINKING OF THE AGRONOMIST – The belief that the year is now lost and there is little to do makes it urgent to implement new ones strategy. Starting from the need to modify the community policies which favored the abandonment of the fields. “In the past they paid according to quintals with a support to the price of the product compared to the market value, then they decided to calculate it based on the surface: this has led to less cultivation of the fields which, progressively, have been increasingly abandoned “, says the agronomist Hector Crobu. A system that has favored the proliferate grasshoppers. This is why the most effective weapon to eradicate this scourge can only be the return to processing of the fields. Even expecting financing ad hoc that incentivize the sector. With a chain of indisputable advantages, also from the point of view of prevention of fire and as regards the reduction of dependence on other countries on raw materials.

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