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I need a 500-word essay on Thread: Can Infectious Animal Diseases Be Studied Safely in Kansas?

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Bruce Knight argues that although the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s research facility at Plum Island, New York, has served well since it was built over half a century ago, modern technology is capable of ensuring safety at a mainland facility, which would also be cheaper to operate, more easily accessible, and more responsive to potential disease threats.




Plum Island Animal Disease Center of New York (PIADCNY) is a United States federal research facility dedicated to the study of animal diseases. It is part of the DHS Directorate for Science and Technology.


Location and description


The center is located on Plum Island near the northeast coast of Long Island in New York state. Any wild mammal seen on the island is killed to prevent the possible outbreak of foot and mouth disease.[1]


Replacement facility


On September 11, 2005, DHS announced that the Plum Island Animal Disease Research Center will be replaced by a new federal facility. The location of the new high-security animal disease lab, to be called the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF), has been recommended to be built in Manhattan, Kansas.[11] However, this plan has been called into question by a 2009 Government Accountability Office study, which states that claims by DHS that the work on foot and mouth disease performed on Plum Island can be performed "as safely on the mainland" is "not supported" by evidence.[12] In 2012, DHS completed a risk assessment of the Kansas site that called the proposed facility "safe and secure".[13] However, a 2012 review of the risk assessment by the National Research Council called it "seriously flawed".[14]




1. "Bioterrorism Fears Revive Waning Interest In Agricultural Disease Lab on Plum Island". The Wall Street Journal. 2002-01-08. Retrieved 2008-05-17.


11. "DHS: DHS Issues Record of Decision on Proposed National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility". Dhs.gov. Retrieved 2011-08-10.


12. "Study spurs request to not phase out Plum Island". Newsday.com. 2009-07-31. Retrieved 2011-08-10.


13. "DHS Issues Updated Site-Specific Risk Assessment For Proposed National Bio And Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF)". dhs.gov.


14.  "Officials press feds for NBAF". LJWorld.com.


External links


•  Official website


(Wikipedia® February 18)




Department of Homeland Security


Plum Island Animal Disease Center


Location: Orient Point, NY


Since 1954, the DHS S&T Office of National Laboratories (ONL) Plum Island Animal Disease Center (PIADC) has served as the nation’s premier defense against accidental or intentional introduction of transboundary animal diseases (a.k.a. foreign animal diseases) including foot-and-mouth disease (FMD). PIADC is the only laboratory in the nation that can work on live FMD virus (FMDV). The lab and its staff of nearly 400 employees provide a host of high-impact, indispensable preparedness and response capabilities, including vaccine R&D, diagnostics, training, and bioforensics among others.



Plum Island is an island in the Town of Southold in Suffolk County, New York in the United States. The island is situated in Gardiners Bay, east of Orient Point, off the eastern end of the North Fork coast of Long Island. It is about 3 miles (4.8 km) long and 1-mile (1.6 km) wide at its widest point.[1]


Access to the island is controlled by the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS).




As one result of the heightened national security initiatives following the attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, Plum Island was considered as a potential site for a new high-security animal disease lab, National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF). In September 2008, the U.S. Congress passed Public Law 110-329 (Sec. 540 - New York) that directed the General Services Administration (GSA) to close the PIADC, sell the Island to the public, and to use the proceeds towards the construction of the NBAF, if it were decided that NBAF would be built elsewhere. In January 2009, the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) selected the City of Manhattan, Kansas, as the site for the NBAF, and decided to relocate the PIADC there as well.[9] However, the decline in real estate values stemming from the subprime mortgage crisis and late-2000s recession caused the sale of the Island to be considered no longer viable. Because the proceeds from selling the Island were needed to construct the new facility in Kansas, the project was effectively cancelled for the short term when the 2013 federal budget request contained no funding for the new facility.[10] As part of the planned sale of Plum Island, the United States Government has been preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Island, one objective of which is to determine whether the impact of nearly sixty years of animal testing on the Island constitutes a threat to public health that could preclude the planned sale.[11]






1. Corey Kilgannon (September 14, 2016). "Home to High-Security Lab and Source of Rumors, Plum Island Faces Uncertain Future". The New York Times.


9. http://www.newsday.com/long-island/epa-seeks-environmental-review-before-plum-island-sale-1.1981828 Newsday, "EPA seeks environmental review before Plum Island sale", June 4, 2010


10. Bhattacharjee, Yudhijit (14 February 2012). "Planned Kansas Biodefense Laboratory Over the Rainbow?". ScienceInsider. American Association for the Advancement of Science. Retrieved 14 February 2012.


11.  "Record of Decision for the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility Environmental Impact Statement". Federal Register. January 16, 2009.


(Wikipedia® January 27, 2017)


Ray L. Wulf argues that an island location is much more effective at containing infectious diseases such as foot-and-mouth disease. A mainland research facility would permit unhampered spread of such diseases throughout the continental United States, with devastating consequences for the agricultural economy. Modern technology is not adequate to ensure safety, and federal, state, and local authorities are not prepared to deal with an outbreak.




American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company.


The history of American Farmers & Ranchers is rich with culture and growth and began with the membership services organization Oklahoma Farmers Union.


OFU State Presidents


2000-2009 Ray L. Wulf


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22 days ago

https://nuonline.neu.edu/images/ci/ng/default_profile_avatar.pngBrian Ryan

RE: Can Infectious Animal Diseases Be Studied Safely in Kansas? Attachment


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When foot-and-mouth disease stopped the UK in its tracks


Claire Bates


February 17, 2016


Fifteen years ago foot-and-mouth disease led to the culling of millions of animals and the UK losing billions of pounds. Could it happen again?


Officially, there were 2,000 cases of foot-and-mouth in the 2001 UK outbreak. But that doesn't do justice to the horrendous toll of the disease.


Each of those cases meant a farm having all of its livestock killed and burned. By the time the last case was confirmed at Whygill Head Farm in Appleby, Cumbria, on 30 September 2001, more than six million sheep, cattle and pigs had been slaughtered.




National Audit Office


The 2001 Outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease


Foot and mouth disease was confirmed at an abattoir in Essex on 20 February 2001. By the time the disease had been eradicated in September 2001, more than 6 million animals had been slaughtered: over 4 million for disease control purposes; and over 2 million for welfare reasons.


A National Audit Office report to Parliament today on the handling of the 2001 foot and mouth outbreak showed that the outbreak cost the public sector over £3 billion and the private sector more than £5 billion.

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National Bio and Agro-defense Facility



Leveraging the National Bio and Agro-defense Facility


The National Bio and Agro-defense Facility, or NBAF, is the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's foremost animal disease research facility.


The $1.25 billion facility is a biosafety level-4 laboratory and will replace the aging Plum Island Animal Disease Center in New York. NBAF is expected to be operational by 2022-2023.


After a three-year site selection process, Manhattan, Kansas, was selected as the location for NBAF. The facility is under construction on Kansas State University's Manhattan campus and is adjacent to the university's Biosecurity Research Institute. This strategic location places NBAF near important veterinary, agricultural and biosecurity research and expertise.


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