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EPA Releases Draft Biological Evaluation for Glyphosate

This original announcement was published by the EPA on November 26, 2020. Click here for more information.

 

EPA is taking the next step in its regulatory review of glyphosate, the most widely used herbicide in the United States, which is used to control a variety of grasses and broadleaf weeds. Glyphosate is used on about 298 million acres of agricultural crop land every year and is effective and affordable.

Building on EPA’s January 2020 action finalizing new mitigation measures for glyphosate, today, EPA is releasing its draft biological evaluation (BE) for glyphosate for public review and comment. Biological evaluations are the beginning of EPA’s Endangered Species Act consultation review process for pesticides where the agency determines whether the pesticide “may affect” one or more individuals of a listed species and their designated critical habitats.

EPA followed its March 2020 Revised Method for National Level Listed Species Biological Evaluations of Conventional Pesticides to conduct this biological evaluation. As such, EPA used the best-available science, including advanced exposure modeling techniques to estimate exposures to plants in various environments, such as wetlands.

EPA’s draft biological evaluation for glyphosate includes an effects determination for listed species and designated critical habitats and finds that glyphosate is likely to adversely affect a significant percent of endangered species and critical habitats. In order to make its “likely to adversely affect” determination, EPA evaluates whether an individual of a listed species is “reasonably expected” to be exposed to the pesticide at a sufficient level that it will have an effect, and whether that effect will be adverse. The agency will accept public comments on its draft evaluation for 60 days following its release and then will finalize the evaluation.

If EPA determines glyphosate may affect a listed species or its critical habitat, the agency will consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service (the Services) as appropriate. The Services use the information in EPA’s final biological evaluation to develop their biological opinion to determine if the pesticide jeopardizes the continued existence of the species and whether there is adverse modification to its critical habitat. If jeopardy or adverse modification is determined, the Services, with input from EPA, will propose protection measures. Protection measures could include seeking to change the terms of the pesticide registration to establish either generic or geographically specific pesticide use limitations if the agency determines that limitations are necessary to ensure that legal use of a pesticide will not harm listed species or their critical habitat.

To read the biological evaluation, please visit our webpage. EPA is accepting public comments upon publication via docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2020-0585 at www.regulations.gov.

 

 

EPA Finalizes Glyphosate Mitigation

This original announcement was published by the EPA on January 30, 2020. Click here for more information.

EPA has concluded its regulatory review of glyphosate—the most widely used herbicide in the United States. After a thorough review of the best available science, as required under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, EPA has concluded that there are no risks of concern to human health when glyphosate is used according to the label and that it is not a carcinogen.

These findings on human health risk are consistent with the conclusions of science reviews by many other countries and other federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Canadian Pest Management Regulatory Agency, the Australian Pesticide and Veterinary Medicines Authority, the European Food Safety Authority, and the German Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. The agency is requiring additional mitigation measures to help farmers target pesticide sprays to the intended pest and reduce the problem of increasing glyphosate resistance in weeds.

Glyphosate has been studied for decades and the agency reviewed thousands of studies since its registration. Glyphosate is used on more than 100 food crops, including glyphosate-resistant corn, soybean, cotton, canola, and sugar beet. It is the leading herbicide for the management of invasive and noxious weeds and is used to manage pastures, rangeland, rights of ways, forests, public land, and residential areas. In addition, glyphosate has low residual soil toxicity and helps retain no-till and low-till farming operations.

More information on glyphosate and EPA’s interim decision is available at www.epa.gov/ingredients-used-pesticide-products/glyphosate

Background

EPA uses interim decisions to finalize enforceable mitigation measures while conducting other longer-term assessments, such as an endangered species assessment. EPA will next complete a draft biological evaluation for glyphosate, which is anticipated for public comment in Fall 2020.

EPA Takes Next Step in Review Process for Herbicide Glyphosate, Reaffirms No Risk to Public Health

This announcement was originally published by the EPA on April 30, 2019. You can access more information here

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking an important step in the agency’s review of glyphosate. As part of this action, EPA continues to find that there are no risks to public health when glyphosate is used in accordance with its current label and that glyphosate is not a carcinogen. The agency’s scientific findings on human health risk are consistent with the conclusions of science reviews by many other countries and other federal agencies. While the agency did not identify public health risks in the 2017 human health risk assessment, the 2017 ecological assessment did identify ecological risks. To address these risks, EPA is proposing management measures to help farmers target pesticide sprays on the intended pest, protect pollinators, and reduce the problem of weeds becoming resistant to glyphosate.

“EPA has found no risks to public health from the current registered uses of glyphosate,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “Today’s proposed action includes new management measures that will help farmers use glyphosate in the most effective and efficient way possible, including pollinator protections. We look forward to input from farmers and other stakeholders to ensure that the draft management measures are workable, realistic, and effective.”

“If we are going to feed 10 billion people by 2050, we are going to need all the tools at our disposal, which includes the use the glyphosate,” U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said. “USDA applauds EPA’s proposed registration decision as it is science-based and consistent with the findings of other regulatory authorities that glyphosate does not pose a carcinogenic hazard to humans.”

Glyphosate is the most widely used herbicide in U.S. agriculture and has been studied for decades.  Glyphosate is used on more than 100 food crops, including glyphosate-resistant corn, soybean, cotton, canola and sugar beet. Non-agricultural uses include residential areas, aquatic areas, forests, rights of way, ornamentals and turf.

Once the Federal Register notice publishes, the public will be able to submit comments on EPA’s proposed decision at www.regulations.gov in docket # EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361. Public comments will be due 60 days after the date of publication in Federal Register. EPA’s responses to the comments received on the draft ecological and human health risk assessments and the benefits assessment will be in the docket.

Find more information about glyphosate, including today’s proposed interim decision and supporting documents.

See the glyphosate draft risk assessments and supporting documents.

EPA reaffirms finding that glyphosate does not cause cancer

The original article was written by Donnelle Eller and published on April 30, 2019 by Des Moines Register. You can access the full article here

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday reaffirmed its finding that glyphosate, the world’s most popular herbicide, is not a cancer risk to users.

“There’s no evidence that glyphosate causes cancer,” said Alexandra Dunn, an EPA assistant administrator for chemical safety and pollution prevention. “There’s no risk to public health from the application of glyphosate.”

It’s the next step in the EPA’s process to re-register the herbicide, popular with farmers growing food and with families and businesses killing weeds.

The agency said its scientific findings on human health risk are consistent with the reviews by several other countries and federal agencies.

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