On July 11, 2012, the Center for Biological Diversity filed with the Department of the Interior/FWS a “Petition to List 53 Amphibians and Reptiles in the United States as Threatened or Endangered species Under the Endangered Species Act,” available online at http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/campaigns/amphibian_conservation/pdfs/Mega_herp_petition_7-9-2012.pdf . The Petition claims that pesticides are among the reasons why many amphibians and reptiles are endangered or threatened . CBD’s website at http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/campaigns/amphibian_conservation/index.html, states that
EPA has exempted Agrobacterium radiobacter, strains K84 and K1026, from the requirements of EPA’s Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program. A. radiobacter is a naturally occurring soil bacterium present in many soil types and roizospheres worldwide. During its Pesticides Review Case 4104, Docket Number EPA-HQ-2009-0878, EPA determined that neither the microorganisms nor the adenine compound they produce are anticipated to produce in humans or any other organism an effect similar to that produced by a naturally occurring estrogen, androgen, or thyroid hormone.
Click here to read EPA Administrative Order exempting A. radiobacter from the EDSP.
Environmental NGOs have sued EOS in a Seattle, Washington federal district court claiming that EPA has not taken any steps to implement the measures recommended in NMFS’ ESA consultation biological opinions for diazinon, malathion, chlorpyrifos, carbaryl, carbofuran, and methomyl. Dow and CropLife America intervened in the case, and moved to stay it pending a decision in a related case they have appealed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. EPA separately moved to stay the Seattle case on several grounds, including the pending Fourth Circuit appeal; alleged settlement negotiations; and ongoing National Academy of Sciences review of the ESA consultation process involving EPA, NMFS and FWS.
On July 2, 2012, EPA received the National Marine Fisheries Service’s final Biological Opinion relative to the potential effects of the pesticide thiobencarb on federally listed threatened or endangered Pacific salmon and steelhead and their designated critical habitat. Thiobencarb is an herbicide used in growing rice. The Biological Opinion provides a nine-month timeframe for implementation. EPA states that it will consider the opinion and take appropriate steps to protect threatened and endangered species from pesticide risks.
NAS/NRC representatives have informed CRE that the report in NAS/NRC’s review of Ecological Risk Assessment under FIFRA and ESA should be published by the end of 2012. The NAS/NRC Review Committee intends to publish its report in final form, without allowing public comment on a draft report. The Committee’s website for this project is available online at http://www8.nationalacademies.org/cp/projectview.aspx?key=49396.