FQPA issues in brief

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) continues to implement the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) and hopes to be finished with the review of the organophosphate class of chemicals this year. Next will be carbamates like carbaryl (Sevin) and then other classes of chemicals in keeping with Congressionally mandated deadlines. While the chemical review process has not slowed to a great extent since the change in administration, the word out of the agency is that they will be reviewing each chemical with an eye towards good data, sound modeling principles, and the impact on user communities. The last point is welcome news for "minor use" industries like ours. By demonstrating need and economic impact, and with decision-makers in the agency listening to how crops are grown, we should fare better than in the Clinton administration.

However, there is one problem. ANLA recently submitted comments on a "consent agreement" that the previous administration had reached with the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) to expedite the review process of chemicals under FQPA process. Under this agreement, the industry could lose access to numerous chemicals due to limited data and a lack of time to make sound decisions based on what goes on in the real world. ANLA submitted comments asking a federal court judge to overturn the consent decree. Instead of allowing EPA and NRDC to limit our tools based on arbitrary deadlines and science, ANLA asked that the Congressionally mandated FQPA process be allowed to take its course, permitting continued stakeholder involvement.

Source: American Nursery & Landscape Association

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