EPA has responded in opposition to the ENGOs’ petition for mandamus in the pesticide case Pesticide Action Network North America and NRDC v. EPA (9th circuit, No. 14-72794). EPA’s brief summarizes the case and the Agency’s response as follows:
“Petitioners Pesticide Action Network North America (“PANNA”), and Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc. (‘NRDC’) (collectively ‘Petitioners’) argue in their Renewed Petition for a Writ of Mandamus that Respondent United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) has unreasonably delayed action on their 2007 administrative petition (the ‘Administrative Petition’) requesting that EPA revoke the tolerances for and ban the widely-used pesticide chlorpyrifos. EPA has not unreasonably delayed action, and Petitioners have not shown that they are entitled to the extraordinary remedy of a writ of mandamus. EPA has already addressed seven of the ten complex scientific issues raised in the Administrative Petition and has been diligently working on the final three, while balancing competing statutory obligations and facing resource limitations. EPA expects to address the remaining issues within weeks in its revised Human Health Risk Assessment for Chlorpyrifos. EPA’s thorough consideration of these issues will inform its ultimate decision whether to leave in place the tolerances for chlorpyrifos or cancel chlorpyrifos registrations, and a full record will facilitate any subsequent judicial review of those decisions. Moreover, despite Petitioners’ claim to be without recourse, Petitioners have declined opportunities to expedite administrative and judicial review of the issues that EPA has already addressed. Thus, the Renewed Petition for Writ of Mandamus should be denied and the case dismissed.”
Click here to read EPA’s response brief.