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EPA Proposes Registration of New Nematicide Active Ingredient

This original announcement was published on July 23, 2021. Click here for more information.

 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking comments on its proposal to register the new pesticide active ingredient fluazaindolizine for agricultural use.

Fluazaindolizine is a sulfonamide nematicide that EPA expects will play a role in resistance management and integrated pest management programs to help delay the further development of nematicide resistance.

Proposed uses of fluazaindolizine include carrots and cucurbit vegetables and certain fruiting, tuberous, and corm vegetables. Other use sites include certain other crops that will not bear fruit within a year of nematicide application: citrus fruit, stone fruit, tree nuts, and small vine-climbing fruit (except fuzzy kiwi).

The human health and ecological hazard profiles for fluazaindolizine indicate that it is a reduced-risk alternative for all its proposed uses when compared to registered alternatives.

After conducting robust scientific assessments, EPA concluded that there are no risk concerns for humans. The ecological risk assessment showed no risk concerns for non-listed (i.e., not endangered or threatened) fish, aquatic invertebrates, plants, and birds. Risks have been identified for mammals and honey bees near use sites. These risks are mitigated with label instructions requiring soil incorporation and mandatory spray drift restrictions for broadcast applications.

EPA is committed to making progress on protecting endangered species, including conducting analyses and putting mitigations in place earlier in the registration process. For listed (i.e., endangered or threatened) species, EPA has made no-effect determinations for fish, aquatic invertebrates, and aquatic plants that do not rely on terrestrial organisms for habitat, prey, or pollination services.

Although EPA has not made effects determinations for listed birds (including reptiles and amphibians), mammals, terrestrial invertebrates, and terrestrial plants, or aquatic listed species that rely on terrestrial organisms, the agency has added mitigation to reduce potential exposure to terrestrial species. EPA expects that this mitigation may also reduce potential risks to groups that rely on terrestrial organisms for habitat, prey, or pollination services. Proposed mitigation includes mandatory spray drift language, prohibition of overhead chemigation, application of fluazaindolizine to the ground under the plant canopy, and mandatory incorporation into the soil by mechanical means or water.

EPA is accepting public comments on this proposal through docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2020-0065 at www.regulations.gov for 15 days.

EPA Offers Virtual Training for Pesticide Applicators in Indian Country

This original message was published by the EPA on July 16, 2021. Click here for more information. 

 

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is offering a free, two-day training webinar on August 11-12, 2021, to certify participants as private applicators of restricted-use pesticides (RUPs) in Indian country under the EPA Plan for the Federal Certification of Applicators of Restricted Use Pesticides within Indian Country (EPA Plan). 

RUPs require special care to avoid harming human health and the environment. In accordance with the requirements in 40 CFR § 171, RUPs can only be sold to or used by pesticide applicators who are specially certified, or to persons under the direct supervision of a certified applicator. RUPs can only be used in areas where EPA has explicitly approved or implemented an applicator certification plan for that state, tribe or federal agency.

Any person who uses RUPs within Indian country under the EPA Plan needs a federal certification from EPA. Additionally, some tribes may choose to further restrict or prohibit the use of RUPs in their areas through the implementation of tribal codes, laws, regulations or other applicable requirements. The EPA Plan does not supersede such tribal requirements. Applicators of RUPs in Indian country should take steps to determine if there are additional tribal requirements they must follow.

Applicators interested in attending the two-day, 12-hour course should express interest by emailing EPAcertplan@epa.gov by August 9, 2021. EPA plans to hold another training on November 17-18, 2021.

Comment Period Extended for Draft Risk Assessments and Proposed Mitigation Measures for Sulfuryl Fluoride

This original announcement was published by the EPA on July 15, 2021. Click here for more information.

 

EPA has extended the public comment period for the draft risk assessments and proposed mitigation measures for sulfuryl flouride. Comments are now due by September 23, 2021 and should be submitted to docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0136 at www.regulations.gov.

For the registration review of sulfuryl fluoride, which includes all the uses of the pesticide, EPA released sulfuryl fluoride draft risk assessments (DRAs), including the combined ecological draft risk assessment and drinking water assessment, and the occupational and residential risk assessment for public comment in May 2021.

The DRAs are part of a multi-step process to identify risks as well as actions that can mitigate risks. After considering public comments, EPA will proceed with registration review by issuing the proposed interim decision, which will propose measures to reduce human health and ecological risks.

The Sulfuryl Fluoride Draft Interim Re-entry Mitigation Measures Memorandum also released in May 2021 outlines the new safety measures EPA is proposing for fumigation uses and is in response to the EPA Office of Inspector General’s December 2016 Report No. 17-P-0053 that was conducted to assess which additional safety measures could be taken to prevent serious injuries from use of this pesticide during residential fumigation.

After a thorough review of public comments, EPA will issue the Final Interim Re-entry Mitigation Measures Memorandum, including the label requirements for sulfuryl fluoride products.

Additional information on sulfuryl fluoride can be found on EPA’s website.

EPA Seeking Public Comment on Petition Related to Seresto Pet Collars

This original announcement was published by the EPA on July 13, 2021. Click here for more information.

 

As part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) work to address concerns raised about pet collars, the agency is asking for public comment on a petition from the Center for Biological Diversity requesting that the agency cancel the registration of insecticide product PNR1427, more commonly known by its brand name Seresto (EPA Registration No. 11556-155), and to suspend the registration pending cancellation. Seresto is a brand name for dog and cat collars designed to kill fleas, ticks, and lice and contains the active ingredients flumethrin and imidacloprid.

EPA understands and shares the public’s concerns about reported incidents with Seresto pet collars. The agency is working to gather information about these incidents and will use this information to determine whether these pet collars still meet the legally required safety standard for registration under FIFRA.

To that end, in April 2021, EPA wrote to Elanco and Bayer, the current and previous holders of the registration at issue, requesting additional information on incidents to better characterize the nature and scale of the incident reports. The information EPA requested was more extensive than standard reporting practices yield.

EPA has received the requested data and will use this information, along with any relevant information received during the public comment on this petition, to determine if any additional action is needed.

The agency encourages pet owners to discuss with their veterinarian when flea and tick control is needed for their pets and which type of control product they should use. Pet owners should read the entire label before using the recommended product and follow all directions carefully, as well as monitor the pet after treatment.

Consumers whose pet experiences adverse reactions from treatment with a flea and tick product should consult their veterinarian immediately. They should also contact the National Pesticide Information Center, an EPA information-sharing partner that has staff who are specially trained in responding to pesticide exposure incidents, including those involving pets.  For flea and tick collars specifically, pet owners should remove the collar immediately if the pet experiences any adverse reaction. In addition, consumers whose pets experienced an adverse reaction from pet collars or topical treatments should also report the incident on EPA’s website at www.epa.gov/pets.

The public comment period on the petition is now open for 60 days. The petition will soon be available in docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2021-0409 at www.regulations.gov. After carefully considering public input and the requests of the petition, EPA will respond to the petition.

More information on protecting pets from fleas and ticks can be found on EPA’s website.

EPA Takes Action in Response to Supply-Chain Disruptions for Inert Ingredients

This original announcement was published by the EPA on July 3, 2021. Click here for more information. 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking action to alleviate a supply-chain issue facing the pesticide industry. EPA is allowing registrants of non-antimicrobial pesticide products to substitute some combination of pre-approved alternate inert ingredients for inert ingredients derived from propylene oxide (PO) feedstocks that are in limited supply due to weather events that occurred in the U.S. Gulf Coast in February 2021. EPA is allowing these substitutions even in cases where propylene glycol is added to the formulation or is part of a brand-name mixture in which the full composition is known to the registrant.

The pre-approved alternates are glycerin (CAS Reg. No. 56-81-5), diethylene glycol (CAS Reg. No. 111-46-6), ethylene glycol (CAS Reg No. 107-21-1); and/or 1,3-propanediol (CAS Reg. No. 504-63-2).

This action, known as “Propylene Glycol Phase 2 – ‘Not In-Kind’ Substitution Mechanism,” relates only to non-antimicrobial pesticide products. The agency will handle “not-in-kind” substitutions for antimicrobial pesticide products on a case-by-case basis.

sis.In April 2021, EPA implemented “Propylene Glycol Phase 1 – ‘In-Kind’ Substitution Mechanism,” to allow certain in-kind substitutions to address propylene glycol supply-chain shortages.

These actions require registrants to self-certify that the substitute inert ingredients serve the same function in the product as propylene glycol and that the change will not impact either the validity of any product-specific data submitted in support of the registration or the product’s acute toxicity category or physical/chemical characteristics in a way that would require label modifications. Registrants must also certify that the substitution will not affect the product’s fitness for its intended purposes in terms of efficacy, phytotoxicity, or any other factor.

This action is time limited, extending to December 31, 2021. Any registrants who wish to make the substitution permanent will have to go through the standard amendment process outlined in PRN 98-10.

EPA Proposes Registration of the New Fungicide Ipflufenoquin

This original announcement was published by the EPA on June 25, 2021. Click here for more information. 

 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking comments on its proposal to register the new active ingredient ipflufenoquin.

Ipflufenoquin may serve as a beneficial tool in managing several plant diseases, some of which are resistant to other fungicides. Proposed labeling is for scab and powdery mildew on pome fruits, and brown rot blossom blight, shot hole, anthracnose, scab, and Alternaria leaf spot on almond.

EPA’s evaluation included a robust scientific assessment, which was used to conclude that there are no risks of concern for humans. The ecological risk assessment showed there were no risks of concern for any tested non-target, non-listed (i.e., not an endangered or threatened species) organism, including birds, honeybees, and terrestrial plants.

EPA is committed to making progress on protecting endangered species, including conducting analyses and putting mitigations in place earlier in the registration process. For ipflufenoquin, EPA evaluated potential effects to federally endangered or threatened species (“listed species”) and their designated critical habitats.

EPA has determined that iplufenoquin will have no effect on listed species except for listed terrestrial plants and those species that have an obligate relationship (i.e., needed for survival) with a terrestrial plant species. EPA has not yet made a final effects determination for listed terrestrial plants and those listed species that have an obligate relationship and is gathering additional information in order to make this decision.

EPA will accept public comments on this proposal via docket number EPA-HQ-OPP-2020-0225 at www.regulations.gov for 15 days.

EPA Accepting Nominations to the Pesticide Program Dialogue Committee

This original announcement was published by the EPA on June 23, 2021. Click here for more information.

 

EPA is accepting nominations to serve on the Pesticide Program Dialogue Committee (PPDC). The PPDC is a representative federal advisory committee that provides advice and recommendations to EPA on issues associated with pesticide regulatory development and reform initiatives, evolving public policy, program implementation, and science related to evaluating and reducing risks from pesticide use.

To maintain the broad representation outlined in the PPDC charter, EPA is seeking highly qualified candidates with diverse backgrounds and identities representing any of the following groups:

  • Federal, state, local and tribal governments,
  • Pesticide industry and trade associations,
  • Pesticide applicators,
  • Grower and commodity groups,
  • Environmental and public interest groups,
  • Farmworker organizations,
  • Public health organizations,
  • Animal welfare groups, and
  • Academia.

Nominations can be submitted by email with the subject line “PPDC Membership” to jewell.shannon@epa.gov.

Nominations must be sent no later than July 23, 2021.

For additional information, including nomination requirements, please see the June 23, 2021 Federal Register Notice. 

Learn more about the Pesticide Program Dialogue Committee.

EPA Administrator Regan Signs Proclamation to Mark National Pollinator Week

This original announcement was published by the EPA on June 21, 2021. Click here for more information. 

The agency continues to advance its work to protect pollinators

Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael S. Regan issued a proclamation in support of National Pollinator Week. This week EPA recognizes the importance of pollinators to America’s food systems and ecosystems and raise awareness about how to promote pollinator health where you live.

“Pollinators are essential for sustaining healthy communities and play a vital role in providing the nation with fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, and more,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “Today, I am proud to affirm this agency’s commitment to protecting the more than 200,000 known species of pollinators.”

As part of the agency’s ongoing work to protect pollinators, EPA is reinvigorating its commitment to the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Pollinator Partnership. The MOU outlines each party’s role in protecting pollinators such as birds, bats, bees and other insects – all of which are vital to pollinating crops and other plants and supporting a healthy ecosystem. EPA and Pollinator Partnership work together to mitigate the impacts of pesticides to pollinators by promoting safe use of pesticides and best management practices.

EPA is also working to minimize pesticide risks to pollinators by taking steps to improve protections for listed species and their critical habitats under the Endangered Species Act. EPA is undertaking multiple efforts, including identifying mitigations for broad groups of pesticides for certain vulnerable listed species. This is expected to benefit listed pollinator species and plants that rely on pollinators.

Pollinator protection is a collaborative effort that requires action from federal and state agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and individuals. Here are a few steps you can take to protect pollinators in your community:

  • If you use pesticides, always follow label instructions closely. This will help minimize potential harm to pollinators.
  • Practice integrated pest management strategies to limit use of pesticides.
  • Plant native flowers in home, school, or community gardens to support a diversity of pollinator species.
  • Choose plants that allow for continuous bloom to provide pollinators consistent access to food sources.
  • It is possible to create a pollinator habitat almost anywhere, including window boxes, community parks, farms, and roadside corridors.

Learn more today about EPA’s pollinator protection efforts and how you can help pollinators by visiting our website.

EPA Hosts Webinar on Electronic Gold Seal Letter Process for Exporting Pesticides

This original announcement was published by the EPA on June 5, 2021. Click here for more information.

EPA is hosting a webinar geared towards pesticide registrants on June 14, 2021, at 1:00 PM EST, to provide a walkthrough of the Pesticide Submission Portal, the digital platform for requesting Certificates of Registration, commonly known as gold seal letters. These letters serve as proof for pesticide exporters that the product is registered with EPA and meets all necessary registration requirements. Stakeholders interested in attending the presentation can click here to join the online meeting (registration is not required).

Since launching the digital platform in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency, the electronic process has resulted in quicker processing of the letters and more thorough and complete internal tracking. Due to continuing safety precautions within the agency, EPA is still unable to produce traditional, paper-based gold seal letters. Accordingly, registrants must continue to submit requests through the Pesticide Submission Portal.

For information on how to request a gold seal certificate letter, including information on how registrants should present the letters to the U.S. Department of State when authentication is needed for business purposes, please visit https://www.epa.gov/pria-fees/m006-pria-fee-category.

EPA Proposes Registration of Products Containing Purpureocillium lilacinum strain PL11, a New Microbial Active Ingredient

This original announcement was published by the EPA on June 3, 2021. Click here for more information.

 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to register several biopesticide products containing Purpureocillium lilacinum strain PL11, a new microbial active ingredient that controls plant-parasitic nematodes.

These biopesticide products will be used on food crops (i.e., fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices) and non-food crops (i.e., cotton, tobacco and turf) in agricultural and commercial settings. Since some of these products are proposed for use on food crops, a tolerance exemption for pesticide residues will also be established.

EPA’s evaluation included a robust scientific assessment, which was used to conclude that these products, when used according to the label instructions, do not present any risks of concern to human health.

The proposed product labels contain language to address potential adverse effects to nontarget insects and nontarget aquatic invertebrates, including limiting application while bees and other insects are actively visiting the treatment area and instructing applicators to minimize spray drift to reduce exposure to these nontarget organisms.

EPA is accepting public comments on this proposal via docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0079 at www.regulations.gov for 15 days.