Sudden Oak Death is a serious forest disease that has killed more than a million trees and infected many more. It is established in 14 California counties and part of southwestern Oregon, but has the potential to spread further in the coastal forests where it thrives. The disease is caused by a pathogen, Phytophthora ramorum
, which spreads naturally once established in forests, but can also be spread longer distances via plants and soil that are moved by people.
It is therefore vitally important to keep people from inadvertently spreading the pathogen. An education campaign to engage the public on this issue has been in place since 2000, but most outreach has taken place at the professional and adult level; resources for youth were lacking.
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