Pesticide Issues- Neonicotinoids, Precautionary Principle
On July 30, the EPA opened a public comment period to respond to a petition from the Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC) to revoke all food tolerances for neonicotinoid insecticides on the basis that EPA failed to properly assess the human health effects during their registration review process. NBGA submitted comments expressing our concerns with the NRDC petition and reiterating the important role and need for appropriate and responsible use of neonicotinoids. These follow comments NBGA submitted to EPA in May during the registration review process for specific neonicotinoid products. The NBGA comments on the NRDC petition can be viewed here.
Separately, legislation has been introduced in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives that would codify the precautionary principle and make significant changes to pesticide laws. The Protect America’s Children from Toxic Pesticides Act of 2020 (PACTPA) calls for a comprehensive reform of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Among the bills changes, it would ban all organophosphates and neonicotinoids, rollback federal preemption of state and local pesticide regulations, ban any pesticide banned by the EU or Canada, and additional steps that could block or slow the EPA registration review process. NBGA participates in the agricultural Pesticide Policy Coalition that will be working to educate congressional offices on pesticide issues and opposing the PACTPA.