EPA Hosting Webinar on Protecting Species through Pesticide Registration Review
This original announcement was published by the EPA on October 21, 2022. Click here for more information.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is holding a public webinar on Nov. 17, 2022, to share an update on efforts to better protect non-target species, including federally listed endangered and threatened (listed) species, from registered conventional pesticides.
This webinar is a follow-up to EPA’s April 2022 Workplan outlining actions that will help EPA meet its obligations under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The webinar will include information on practical protections for non-target organisms, including listed species that EPA expects to adopt as part of many future registration review decisions.
During the webinar, EPA staff will discuss:
- Efforts to develop mitigation measures to protect species during the registration review process for conventional pesticides.
- The continued use of Bulletins Live! Two as a tool to set forth geographically specific pesticide use limitations to protect certain listed species.
- Additional approaches for advancing the second and third strategies in the April 2022 Workplan: improving approaches to ESA mitigation and improving the interagency consultation process.
- Opportunities for public participation.
EPA invites all interested stakeholders to attend. The Nov. 17 meeting will be held via webinar from 1–2:30 p.m. EST. A meeting link and agenda will be sent to everyone who registers for the event.
When EPA registers a pesticide or reevaluates it in registration review, the Agency has a responsibility under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) to determine whether the pesticide presents unreasonable adverse effects on human health or the environment. EPA conducts human health and ecological risk assessments to determine what risks are posed by a pesticide and whether changes to the use or proposed use are necessary to protect the environment.
EPA also has a responsibility under the ESA to ensure that certain pesticide registrations do not jeopardize the continued existence of listed species or adversely modify their designated critical habitats. In the past couple of decades, EPA has seen an increase in litigation due to the Agency’s failures to meet its ESA obligations when taking FIFRA actions. In April 2022, EPA released a workplan to address the complexity of meeting its ESA obligations under FIFRA. Because EPA does not have the capacity or scientific processes in place to meet all of its obligations immediately, the workplan identifies the FIFRA actions that are the highest priority for fulfilling its ESA obligations. These include actions with court-enforceable deadlines and new registrations of conventional pesticides.
The ESA workplan also outlines extensive actions that EPA will pursue over time, in collaboration with other federal agencies, to improve protection for listed species and meet its ESA obligations while minimizing regulatory impacts to pesticide users.
As part of implementing the workplan, EPA continues to consider strategies and processes to address its ESA obligations for registration review decisions. As part of the webinar, EPA will discuss FIFRA mitigation measures that EPA is considering proposing to address risks to non-target species, including listed species, and other key steps the Agency plans to pursue under its workplan.