Alien Plant Control Policy


Original Draft by Wayne Gagn – March 9, 1986
Revised Draft by R. T. Martin – October 27, 1988
Re-formatted version of Martin Draft (below) by Ed Stevens – April 30, 1992
(Note – this Policy needs considerable wordsmithing before being approved and, any revision must not exceed the formatted space allocated below)



In Hawaiʻi, the extensive and long-term degradation, even destruction, of native ecosystems, along with man’s agricultural and botanical endeavors, by alien plants is only dimly perceived by society.  Until social, political, and regulatory awareness is raised to the level where effective preventative and control measures are taken, we will continue to suffer biological, social, and economic losses from alien plants that exceed the cost of effective prevention and control.


Policy Statement

It shall be the policy of Sierra Club, Hawaiʻi Chapter, to support educational, legislative, regulatory, and other means to restrict entry or to effect early eradication or long term control of undesirable alien plants in order to reduce their impact on the Hawaiʻi ecosystem.

Position Statements

  1.   Alien plants cause problems in Hawaiʻi in the following ways:
    1.  They invade, degrade, and destroy the native ecosystems of Hawaiʻi;
    2.  They reduce the profitability of agricultural endeavors;
    3.  They reduce the success of man’s botanical endeavors;
    4.  They harbor and introduce alien insects and pathogens that attack or destroy native and cultivated plants alike;
    5. They cause a heavy burden to a society slow to recognize the need for early eradication or control;
  2.   Prevention or reduction of these problems involves:
    1.  An extremely high level of professionalism and dedication (starting at the top) within the involved regulatory agency;
    2.  An enlightened community actively encouraging and supporting efforts of the regulatory agency;
    3.  An aggressive quarantine program to exclude plants recognized to be undesirable;
    4. Early recognition of “overly aggressive” or undesirable traits of newly arrived introductions;
    5. Aggressive eradication of undesirable alien plants before initial infestation is too large to control;
    6. Early introduction of biological or other control measures to alleviate damage from infestations beyond eradication;
    7. An effective publication program to maintain support for needed action.
  3.   State Statutes designate the Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture as the regulatory agency for:
    1.  Plant quarantine;
    2.  Noxious weed control.
  4. 4.  Alien plant control requires continuous effort and input to attain a cost effective level of success.

This Policy on Alien Plant Control has not been approved by the Sierra Club Hawaiʻi Chapter Executive Committee.