What is IPM?

There are literally hundreds of definitions of Integrated Pest Management (IPM). The Western IPM Center recognizes that nearly all of these definitions have merit. However, for the Center’s purposes we have chosen to use the definition in the National Roadmap for IPM. The Roadmap defines IPM as follows:

Integrated Pest Management, or IPM, is a long-standing, science-based, decision-making process that identifies and reduces risks from pests and pest management related strategies. It coordinates the use of pest biology, environmental information, and available technology to prevent unacceptable levels of pest damage by the most economical means, while posing the least possible risk to people, property, resources, and the environment. IPM provides an effective strategy for managing pests in all arenas from developed residential and public areas to wild lands. IPM serves as an umbrella to provide an effective, all-encompassing, low-risk approach to protect resources and people from pests.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has also defined IPM. EPA’s definition is:

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to pest management that relies on a combination of common-sense practices. IPM programs use current, comprehensive information on the life cycles of pests and their interaction with the environment. This information, in combination with available pest control methods, is used to manage pest damage by the most economical means, and with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment.

The Compendium of IPM Definitions (CID) is an interesting collection of definitions from 1950 to 1998, with citations from worldwide literature for each definition.

Additional IPM References