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News Archive: August 2010

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This information is provided for reference. Over time, links to news items may become unavailable, in these cases the item will remain listed, but no link will be provided. Also, please be aware that the information in any particular article may be outdated or superseded by additional information.

August 27
New Pilot Project To Test Pesticide Users’ Interest in Obtaining Labeling Via the Internet
EPA is inviting organizations to work with the Agency to conduct a “User Acceptance Pilot” to research the extent to which pesticide users would accept a system requiring them to obtain labeling via the internet. We believe that web-distributed labeling has the potential to improve compliance with labeled use instructions by making pesticide labels easier to read and comprehend. Web-distributed labeling would accomplish this, in part, by only providing instructions for the location and intended use that the pesticide user specifies online. To test the viability of online pesticide labeling, the Agency published a Federal Register Notice on August 18, 2010 inviting participation in the pilot. Stakeholders should notify EPA of their interest in participating no later than September 17, 2010.

August 25
SFIREG Full Committee Public Meeting Scheduled
The Association of American Pesticide Control Officials (AAPCO), State FIFRA Issues Research and Evaluation Group (SFIREG), Pesticide Operations and Management (POM) Committee will hold a 1-day meeting on September 20, 2010, in Arlington, VA. Tentative agenda topics for the meeting include: transitioning insect repellents from section 25(b) to section 3 status; report from the supplemental labeling workgroup; update on ecological incidents reported to the National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC) portal; FIFRA section 6(a)(2) reports--trends, numbers, major incidents; response from EPA on SFIREG letter on total release foggers; Soil Fumigants: Are we ready for implementation of label changes?; and report from EPA on changes to section 24(c) guidance and processes. This meeting is open for the public to attend.

August 20
EPA Releases Draft Strategy for Clean Water
EPA is inviting the public to comment on the agency’s draft strategy to protect and restore our nation’s lakes, streams and coastal waters. The strategy, “Coming Together for Clean Water: EPA’s Strategy for Achieving Clean Water,” is designed to chart EPA’s path in furthering EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson’s key priority of protecting America’s waters. The strategy was developed by considering the input and ideas generated at the April “Coming Together for Clean Water” forum as well as comments received through the online discussion forum. Participants shared their perspectives on how to advance the EPA’s clean water agenda focusing on the agency’s two priority areas: healthy watersheds and sustainable communities. EPA is now inviting the public to consider and provide their comments on the approaches outlined in the strategy. Public comments on the draft strategy should be submitted by September 17. EPA will review all comments and post a final strategy later in the year.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

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August 18
Sumner, Washington Landowners Fined $18,000 for Wetlands Violations
Landowners have agreed to pay an $18,000 penalty for alleged violations of the Clean Water Act at their Sumner, Washington property, according to an order from EPA. In 2005, the landowners placed fill material into four acres of wetlands without the required permits from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, according to the order. The landowners cleared the property for agricultural purposes. On July 29, 2009, EPA ordered the landowners to restore the wetlands and ditches impacted by these activities. The landowners have restored the site as required by the order and must continue monitoring it until 2019. The landowners had previously filled the wetlands at this property without the appropriate permits. They voluntarily restored the site in 1996 with the assistance of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

August 17
Bayer Agrees To Terminate All Uses of Aldicarb
EPA and Bayer CropScience, the manufacturer, have reached an agreement to end use of the pesticide aldicarb in the United States. A new risk assessment conducted by EPA based on recently submitted toxicity data indicates that aldicarb, an N-methyl carbamate insecticide, no longer meets the agency’s rigorous food safety standards and may pose unacceptable dietary risks, especially to infants and young children. To address the most significant risks, Bayer has agreed first to end aldicarb use on citrus and potatoes and will adopt risk mitigation measures for other uses to protect groundwater resources. New measures to protect shallow drinking water wells in vulnerable areas of the southeastern U.S. coastal plain and lower application rates will be immediately added to product labels for use on cotton, soybeans, and peanuts. The company will voluntarily phase out production of aldicarb by December 31, 2014. All remaining aldicarb uses will end no later than August 2018. Additionally, EPA plans to revoke the tolerances (legal pesticide residues allowed in food) associated with these commodities. EPA did this to ensure we have the safest food supply possible.

EPA Launches Web Forum on How To Best Protect America’s Drinking Water
EPA is launching a web-based discussion forum to gather public input on how the Agency can improve protection of drinking water. The information will be used in implementing EPA’s new drinking water strategy announced by Administrator Lisa P. Jackson in March. The discussion forum will feature a series of topics based on the four segments of the drinking water strategy: addressing contaminants as groups rather than one at a time, fostering development of new technologies, using the existing authority of several statutes to protect drinking water, and partnering with states to share more complete data. The forum will be open for discussion for about a month, with each topic area being discussed separately.

August 13
EPA Proposes Conditional Registration of Nanosilver Pesticide Product
EPA is proposing to conditionally register a pesticide product containing nanosilver as a new active ingredient for a period of 4 years. The antimicrobial pesticide product, HeiQ AGS-20, is a silver-based product that is proposed for use as a preservative for textiles. Under its new policy concerning public involvement in registration decisions, EPA is providing a 30-day opportunity for public comments on the proposed registration. Public comments will be accepted until September 11, 2010.

August 12
Eight Beef Feedlots in Northwest Iowa Face Enforcement Actions as EPA Emphasizes Compliance with Clean Water Act
EPA Region 7 has taken a series of civil enforcement actions against eight beef feedlot operations in northwest Iowa for violations of the Clean Water Act, as part of a continuing enforcement emphasis aimed at ending harmful discharges of pollutants from concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) into the region’s rivers and streams. All eight of the most recent enforcement actions involve administrative compliance orders issued to medium-sized CAFOs, which are feedlots that confine between 300 and 999 cattle and whose discharge is facilitated by a man-made conveyance. All but two of the eight CAFOs discharge runoff into waters that have been officially identified by the State of Iowa as being impaired by pollutants typically associated with animal feeding operations.

August 11
National Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center August Newsletter and Webcast Exit EPA
The August edition of the National Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center (LPELC) newsletter is now available. Topics include: September Webcast - "Low Disturbance Manure Injection and Equipment for Incorporating Solid Manures;" New Videos on the LPELC YouTube Channel; CAFO/NMP Permit Writers Training Course; Solid Manure Injection Equipment; International ASABE Symposium; FPPC Tech Summit; and National Poultry Waste Management Symposium. The next webcast, scheduled for September 17, 2010 at 2:30 pm (Eastern), “Low Disturbance Manure Injection and Solid Manure Injection,” will highlight the growing popularity of incorporating manure in no-till and forage systems. The speakers will discuss some of the latest research on air emissions and equipment for both liquid and solid manure. The webcast will be moderated by Doug Beegle, Pennsylvania State University. Speakers are to be announced.

EPA Proposing To Amend Provisions in Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reporting Rule
EPA is proposing to amend specific provisions in the GHG reporting rule to clarify certain provisions, to correct technical and editorial errors, and to address certain questions and issues that have arisen since promulgation. These proposed changes include providing additional information and clarity on existing requirements, allowing greater flexibility or simplified calculation methods for certain sources in a facility, amending data reporting requirements to provide additional clarity on when different types of GHG emissions need to be calculated and reported, clarifying terms and definitions in certain equations, and technical corrections. Comments must be received on or before September 27, 2010.

Revised Fee Schedule for Registration Applications
EPA is publishing a revised list of pesticide registration service fees applicable to specified pesticide applications and tolerance actions. In accordance with the Pesticide Registration Improvement Renewal Act, the registration service fees for covered pesticide registration applications received on or after October 1, 2010, will increase by 5 percent, rounded up to the nearest dollar amount, from the fees published for fiscal years 2009 and 2010. The new fees become effective on October 1, 2010.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

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August 4
Comments Requested on Nominations to the FIFRA Scientific Advisory Panel
This notice provides the names, addresses, professional affiliations, and selected biographical data of persons nominated to serve on the Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP) established under section 25(d) of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). The Agency, at this time, anticipates selecting two new members to serve on the panel as a result of membership terms that will expire this year. Public comment on the nominations is invited, as these comments will be used to assist the Agency in selecting the new chartered Panel members. Comments, identified by docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0565, must be received on or before September 3, 2010.

EPA Soliciting Public Comments on 22 Bt Corn Plant-Incorporated Protectant Registrations and Proposed Biopesticides Registrations Action Documents
EPA is opening a docket and initiating a public comment period on our preliminary decision to amend the terms of twenty-two (22) expiring Bt Corn PIP (Plant Incorporated Protectant) registrations to extend the expiration dates. We have conducted comprehensive assessments of each of these registrations, considering all toxicity and environmental effects data, data from insect resistance monitoring, and insect resistance refuge compliance reports, since the last comprehensive evaluation of these products in 2001. Based on our comprehensive assessment, we have concluded that Bt corn PIPs have had a positive environmental impact, and we are proposing several actions to strengthen the insect resistance management requirements to ensure continued success in the prevention of the evolution of resistance in target pests. Comments on these documents will be accepted through September 3, 2010.

August 3
Endosulfan Phase-out Agreement To Protect Health of Farmworkers and Wildlife
EPA is taking action to end the use of the pesticide endosulfan because it can pose unacceptable health risks to farmworkers and wildlife and can persist in the environment. A formal Memorandum of Agreement with manufacturers of the agricultural insecticide will result in voluntary cancellation and phase-out of all existing endosulfan uses in the United States. Terminating uses of endosulfan will address its unacceptable risks to agricultural workers and wildlife. Under the agreement, most currently approved endosulfan crop uses will end in two years, including over 30 crop uses plus use on ornamental trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants. About 12 other crop uses will end over the following four years. Of these 12, the last 4 endosulfan uses will end on July 31, 2016. The agreement provides extra time for the later uses to phase out so that growers may successfully transition to lower risk pest control strategies, especially where endosulfan affords significant benefits and few alternatives are available. For all uses except the first ones to phase out, EPA is requiring additional mitigation measures during the phase-out period to minimize worker risks associated with endosulfan use on these crops. By the end of 2010, each endosulfan end-use product label will include a table showing the exact dates when it will become unlawful to use the product on the crops included on the label.

Idaho Fish Hatchery Fined $98,000 for Clean Water Act violations
An Idaho fish hatchery has agreed to pay $98,002 to EPA to settle alleged federal Clean Water Act violations at its hatchery and processing facility near Filer, Idaho. From October of 2007 through August of 2008, the facility reported significantly higher levels of total residual chlorine, a toxic pollutant, than allowed by the facility’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit. Further review by EPA showed that the facility regularly failed to provide valid reports of chlorine limits to EPA for over four years.

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