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EPA Hosts Webinar to Address Proper Disinfecting Protocols for Learning Environments

This original announcement was published on October 5, 2020. Click here for more! 

As schools reopen, it is critically important that students and children return to clean and healthy learning environments. On Oct. 13, EPA will host a webinar dedicated to best management practices for cleaning and disinfecting schools, day cares and universities.

The webinarAddressing Disease Mitigation in Schools, Daycare Centers and Universities with Sanitizers and Disinfectants, will provide participants with cleaning and disinfection recommendations to fight pathogens such as SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

Participants will learn:

  • how educational institutions are implementing cleaning and disinfecting protocols;
  • how to properly clean high-touch surfaces;
  • how to interpret product labels for proper use, safety and personal protection; and
  • how to use EPA web-based resources to select disinfectants approved for use against SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).

EPA will engage with stakeholders such as administrators, facility managers, custodial staff and nurses at schools, day cares and universities. This information will also be helpful to health departments and pest management professionals.

Featured speakers include:

  • Janet Hurley, Extension Program Specialist at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service;
  • Brian Burden, Executive Director and Vice President at Mooring USA;
  • Kenneth McPherson, Pesticide Safety and Integrated Pest Management in Schools Coordinator at EPA Region 6; and
  • Kristen Willis, Ph.D., Senior Scientist at EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs Antimicrobials Division.

Register for the webinar here: Addressing Disease Mitigation in Schools, Daycare Centers and Universities with Sanitizers and Disinfectant – Oct. 13 | 2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. EDT

This webinar represents the latest in EPA’s ongoing efforts to keep Americans safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more about EPA’s response here.

Read the jointly developed guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and EPA for Cleaning and Disinfecting Public Spaces, Workplaces, Businesses, Schools and Homes.

View our infographic that demonstrates how to use disinfectants safely and effectively.

Visit List N: EPA’s list of disinfectant products expected to kill SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).

EPA takes action to help Americans disinfect indoor spaces efficiently and effectively

This original announcement was published by the EPA on July 7, 2020. Click here for more! 

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking action to ensure that Americans are able to disinfect public spaces effectively and efficiently to control SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The newly released guidance outlines what information registrants need to submit in order to expedite the review of requests to add electrostatic sprayer application directions to disinfectant product labels for use against SARS-CoV-2.

“Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces continues to be an effective way to reduce the spread of the virus,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “With this guidance, EPA is ensuring offices, schools, and local governments have access to as many effective and approved surface disinfectant products as possible—including those designed to disinfect large indoor spaces.”

Electrostatic spraying has drawn increased interest through the public health emergency because of the need to disinfect large indoor spaces (e.g., schools, offices, businesses) or areas with many surfaces. Unlike conventional spraying methods, electrostatic sprayers apply a positive charge to liquid disinfectants as they pass through the nozzle. The positively charged disinfectant is attracted to negatively charged surfaces, which allows for efficient coating of hard nonporous surfaces.

EPA’s new guidance covers requests to add electrostatic spraying directions to both new and currently registered disinfectant products—including those on EPA’s List N: Disinfectants for Use Against SARS-CoV-2—that require review under Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA). Today’s guidance builds on EPA’s previously announced expedited review of certain submissions for products intended for use against SARS-CoV-2.

When using these products, always follow the directions and safety information on the label. A disinfectant product’s safety and effectiveness may change based on how it is used. If a product’s label does not include disinfection directions for electrostatic spraying, EPA has not reviewed any data on whether the product is safe and effective when used by this method.

EPA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released updated guidance to help facility operators and families properly clean and disinfect spaces. The guidance provides step-by-step instructions for public spaces, workplaces, businesses, schools, and homes. EPA has compiled a list of disinfectant products, including ready-to-use sprays, concentrates, and wipes, that can be used against COVID-19.

For information on EPA’s efforts to help address the novel coronavirus, visit: https://www.epa.gov/coronavirus.

EPA approves first surface disinfectant products tested on the SARS-CoV-2 virus

This original announcement was published by the EPA on July 7, 2020. Click here for more!

 

Throughout the COVID-19 public health emergency, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has worked to provide the American public with information about how to safely and effectively kill the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, on surfaces. Last week, EPA approved two products, Lysol Disinfectant Spray (EPA Reg No. 777-99) and Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist (EPA Reg No. 777-127), based on laboratory testing that shows the products are effective against SARS-CoV-2.

“EPA is committed to identifying new tools and providing accurate and up-to-date information to help the American public protect themselves and their families from the novel coronavirus,”said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “EPA’s review of products tested against this virus marks an important milestone in President Trump’s all of government approach to fighting the spread of COVID-19.”

Before pesticide products can legally make claims that they can kill a particular pathogen such as SARS-CoV-2, the claim must be authorized by EPA based on a review of data. Because novel viruses are typically not immediately available for laboratory testing, EPA established guidance for Emerging Viral Pathogens.

In January 2020, the agency activated the guidance for the first time in response to the SARS-CoV-2 public health emergency. The guidance allows product manufacturers to provide EPA with data, even in advance of an outbreak, that shows their products are effective against harder-to-kill viruses than SARS-CoV-2. Through this guidance and the agency’s review of newly registered products, EPA’s list of products that meet the agency’s criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2 (known as List N) includes more than 420 products. In many cases, the agency was able to approve claims in as little as 14 days.

This week, EPA updated the entries for two products on List N to show they have now been tested directly against SARS-CoV-2. These are the first List N products for which the agency has reviewed laboratory testing data and approved label claims against SARS-CoV-2. EPA expects to approve such claims for additional List N products in the coming weeks.

All products on EPA’s List N meet the agency’s criteria for effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2. When using an EPA-registered disinfectant, follow the label directions for safe, effective use. Make sure to follow the contact time, which is the amount of time the surface should be visibly wet. Read the agency’s infographic on how to use these products.

Additional information on EPA’s coronavirus efforts: https://www.epa.gov/coronavirus

EPA Addresses Supply Chain Issues for Food-Contact Surface Sanitizer Products

This original announcement was published by the EPA on May 16, 2020. Click here for more

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued its third temporary modification to Pesticide Registration Notice 98-10 to include food-contact surface sanitizer products containing the active ingredient isopropyl alcohol.

This new time-limited amendment to PRN 98-10 extends some of the supply chain flexibilities in the April modification to products used in the food manufacture and preparation industries. Specifically, this temporary amendment expands these flexibilities to manufacturers of food-contact surface sanitizer products containing isopropyl alcohol. Additionally, isopropyl alcohol has been added to the list of active ingredients considered to be commodity chemicals by the temporary amendment.

These isopropyl alcohol sanitizer products are not to be applied directly to food. Instead, they are used to sanitize equipment and surfaces used in food manufacturing and food preparation.

EPA intends for these flexibilities to increase the availability of products for use against the novel coronavirus. In addition, EPA is responding to feedback from the food manufacture and preparation industries that they are experiencing challenges acquiring sanitizers used in production facilities processing low-moisture products like cereal, flour, and industrial baked goods.

Click here for more information. 

EPA provides critical information about safe disinfectant use

This original announcement was published by the EPA on April 23, 2020. Click here for more.

 

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is continuing its efforts to provide critical information on surface disinfectant products that can be used to protect the health of all Americans throughout the COVID-19 public health emergency. In support of these efforts, EPA now has nearly 400 products that have qualified to be effective against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. This week the agency also published an overview of its actions and resources related to disinfection against the novel coronavirus.

“EPA is dedicated to its mission of protecting human health and we want all Americans to have access to effective and approved surface disinfectant products,” said Alexandra Dapolito Dunn, assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. “We also want everyone follow the directions on the product so that we can safely use registered disinfectants and provide critical protection to our families.”

When using an EPA-registered surface disinfectant, always follow the product’s directions and remember:

  • Never apply the product to yourself or others. Do not ingest disinfectant products. This includes never applying any product on List N (the agency’s list of disinfectants to use against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19) directly to food.
  • Never mix products unless specified in the use directions. Certain combinations of chemicals will create highly toxic acids or gases.
  • Wash the surface with soap and water before applying disinfectant products if the label mentions pre-cleaning.
  • Follow the contact time listed for your product on List N. This is the amount of time the surface must remain visibly wet to ensure efficacy against the virus. It can sometimes be several minutes.
  • Wash your hands after using a disinfectant. This will minimize your exposure to the chemicals in the disinfectant and the pathogen you are trying to kill.

EPA provides additional information on disinfectant safety messages on its twitter feeds, @EPA and @ChemSafety. These channels will be updated with new materials throughout the COVID-19 crisis.

EPA is also continuing to add additional chemicals to its list of common inert ingredients. These actions are intended to help address supply chain issues for EPA-registered disinfectants and other pesticides. It allows manufacturers of already-registered EPA products to change the source of listed inert ingredients.

To learn more about disinfectant safety, see this guide from our partner, the National Pesticide Information Center, about using disinfectants to control COVID-19: http://npic.orst.edu/ingred/ptype/amicrob/covid19.html