Nuclear pest control could help Ontario (Canada) farmers

Pepper weevils destroyed $83 million in crops in 2016, but researchers are hoping Colbat-60, a nuclear isotope, can sterilize the ruinous insects and put a dent in their population

A high-tech form of insect birth control connected to nuclear power could solve a devastating pest problem for Ontario farmers. Pepper weevils can burrow into farmed peppers and destroy them from the inside, and according to the Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers, they ruined $83 million worth of crops in 2016 — a figure that does not include the costs of management, suppression initiatives or cleanup.

Nuclear energy provider Bruce Power, Ottawa-based health science company Nordion and the University of Guelph are teaming up to reduce the population of these pesky creatures. Read more.

Tags: Radioisotopes Industry