The United States Court of Appeals rejected most of the environmentalist NGOs’ claims in the case Center for Biological Diversity v. EPA. The court provided the following summary of its lengthy decision (footnotes omitted”):
“The panel affirmed in part, and reversed in part, the district court’s dismissal of plaintiffs’ claims arising from their citizen suit alleging that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency violated the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”) when it registered certain pesticide active ingredients and pesticide products without undertaking consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (collectively “the Service”).
EPA has published final rules updating the existing regulation concerning the certification of applicators of restricted use pesticides in response to public comments received on the proposal and based on stakeholder review of the existing regulation and its implementation since 1974. These final rules are effective March 6, 2017. Click here for EPA’s Federal Register notice of these final rules, which contains more details and relevant links.
CRE filed comments on EPA’s draft Ecological Risk Assessment for atrazine (“ERA”). CRE’s comments included the following conclusion and recommended EPA actions:
There are no field data–no real-world data–supporting the ERA’s modeled effects. EPA should revise its ERA to be consistent with this fact.
If EPA still believes that some change in the current ecological assessment and regulation of atrazine may be necessary, then EPA should first take the following actions:
1) Validate the ERA models in accordance with the principles discussed above;
2) Develop field data supporting any changes proposed by EPA;
On December 20, 2016, EPA published the following press release:
“EPA is announcing the start of a voluntary pilot program to evaluate the usefulness and acceptability of a mathematical tool that estimates the toxicological classification of a chemical, which is used in the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) and which is referred to as the GHS Mixtures Equation. This mathematical tool can be used as an alternative to acute animal oral and inhalation toxicity studies for pesticide formulations. EPA is now providing guidance on how pesticide companies can voluntarily submit data for the GHS Mixtures Equation Pilot Program.
On December 14, 2016, the Center for Regulatory Effectiveness commented at EPA’s Science Advisory Panel reviewing EPA’s assessment of the carcinogenic potential of glyphosate. CRE’s comments agree with EPA’s conclusion that glyphosate is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans at doses relevant to human health risk assessment. Any contrary EPA conclusion would violate the Information Quality Act. Click here to read CRE’s oral comments at the SAP meeting.
EPA sent out the following notice:
“The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP) will meet December 13-16, 2016, to consider and review a set of scientific issues being evaluated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding EPA’s evaluation of the carcinogenic potential of the herbicide glyphosate. This is the meeting that was rescheduled from October 18-21, 2016.
EPA has published meeting materials in docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0385 at www.regulations.gov, including a glyphosate issue paper with the Agency’s proposed classification that glyphosate is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans at doses relevant for human health risk assessment. The meeting materials, charge, panel members and panel biosketches for this SAP meeting are also posted on the Scientific Advisory Panel website.”
EPA has announced issuance by all ten EPA Regions of the final 2016 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System pesticide general permit–the ‘‘2016 PGP.’’ The 2016 PGP, which has an effective date of October 31, 2016, replaces the existing permit (‘‘2011 PGP’’) that expires at midnight on October 31, 2016, and authorizes certain point source discharges from the application of pesticides to waters of the United States in accordance with the terms and conditions described therein. EPA is issuing this permit for five (5) years in all areas of the country where EPA is the NPDES permitting authority.
Read this before you hate on them.
By Yvette d’Entremont
Contrary to popular belief, the relationship is doing pretty well. The bee populations are at about a 20-year high. The main pesticide that’s come under fire have been a class called neonicotinoids, and studies have shown that the possibilities of harm from neonics is limited at best. In a study published by the Journal of Economic Entomology, exposing bees to amounts of neonicotinoids they would be exposed to in the field, their health was not affected. Growers are being cautious in their pesticide application process to be on the safe side, but this pesticide is applied to non-GMO crops, so the GMOs themselves wouldn’t be implicated anyway.
Mr. Bruce Levinson, Senior Vice President—Regulatory Intervention, of CRE will testify at the upcoming FDA meeting on the composition of tobacco leaf. Interested stakeholders should submit relevant information here. [email@example.com]
Nov. 16 Update: CRE Tells FDA about the Tip-of-the-Iceberg: Two-Billion Illegally-Made Cigarettes
In its presentation to FDA today, CRE informed that massive quantities of cigarettes are being illegally-manufactured in Canada with US-grown tobacco and then re-exported to the US and beyond. A recent international law enforcement operation found that two million kilos of tobacco were trafficked into Canada from North Carolina where it was grown, enough tobacco for two-billion cigarettes. The two-billion cigarettes represents only the tip of the illegal cigarette manufacturing iceberg as dozens of illicit factories are still operating in Ontario and Quebec.
Deadline Extended: EPA Solicits Proposals for a Cooperative Agreement for Pesticide Applicator Education and Training
EPA has extended the deadline for applications from October 31 to December 21, 2016.
EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs is soliciting applications from eligible recipients to provide financial assistance in carrying out pesticide applicator education and training activities. This work supports implementation of EPA’s Certification and Training Rule, which aims to reduce the risk of pesticide poisoning and injury among handlers, applicators, bystanders and the public.
With the extension, EPA must receive proposals through Grants.gov no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on December 21, 2016. For more information on this Request for Proposals, visit opportunity number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-001 at Grants.gov.