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The news releases, reports, and other documents listed below have been selected by the Ag Center because they are of direct importance to the environmental compliance efforts of the agricultural community. The items are in chronological order, with the most recent listed first.

April 14, 2014
EPA Scientist Receives Prestigious Award
Today, Dr. Steven Thomas Purucker of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was honored as a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government to science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers.

April 10, 2014
EPA Enforcement Settlement Addresses Pesticide Violations by Chemical Universe, Inc., of North Kansas City, Mo.
An inspection by the Missouri Department of Agriculture of Chemical Universe, Inc., a pesticide producer in North Kansas City, Mo., has revealed alleged violations of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Through an enforcement action with EPA Region 7, the company has agreed to pay a $34,740 civil penalty to settle the allegations related to the improperly reported production and distribution of misbranded and unregistered pesticides.

EPA Awards Over $9 Million to Universities for Research to Help Predict the Implications of Chemicals on Human Health and the Environment
Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced research grants to Arizona State University and the University of California, Santa Barbara to better understand the impacts of chemicals and nanomaterials throughout their life cycle—from design, manufacture, use and disposal.

April 08, 2014
EPA Recognizes National Healthy Schools Day; Encourages Smart, Sensible, Sustainable Approach to School Pest Control; Promotes Webinar on Indoor Air Quality
Protecting children’s health where they live, learn, and play is a top priority for the EPA. April 8, 2014, is National Healthy Schools Day, a day dedicated to promoting healthy school environments for children. Healthy Schools Day is coordinated by Healthy Schools Network, Inc. in cooperation with the EPA to promote EPA’s environmental health guidelines and programs for schools and children’s health.

April 4, 2014
EPA Announces Voluntary Process to Provide Applicators with Online Access to Pesticide Labeling
Today, EPA is launching a new voluntary process by which registrants can opt to make legally valid pesticide labeling accessible online. Until now, no version of online labeling has been legally valid for the purpose of making a pesticide application. This Web-distributed labeling system will initially focus on agricultural and industrial pesticides and professional applicators.

MONDAY: U.S. EPA Administrator to Keynote Climate Discussion with Bipartisan Policy Center and National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy will deliver a keynote address to a workshop convened by the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) and the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). This workshop is the third in a series on greenhouse gas (GHG) regulation of existing power plants under the Clean Air Act. Colette D. Honorable of NARUC will also deliver remarks.

April 2, 2014
Assessing Risks to Endangered and Threatened Species from Pesticides – EPA Workshop on Joint Interim Approaches to NAS Recommendations

On April 22, 2014, the EPA will hold a one day workshop to provide a forum for stakeholders to offer scientific and technical feedback on the joint interim approaches issued in November 2013, by the EPA, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture in response to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report entitled, “Assessing Risks to Endangered and Threatened Species from Pesticides.”

EPA Seeks Small Entity Participation on Upcoming Medium- and Heavy-Duty Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is inviting small businesses, governments, and not-for-profit organizations to participate as Small Entity Representatives (SERs) for a Small Business Advocacy Review (SBAR) Panel. This panel will focus on the agency’s proposed extension of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles’ greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards beyond model year 2018.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

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March, 2014
March Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center NewsletterExit EPA
March's newsletter brings many great new resources your way, including a webcast on sidedressing manure on corn with a side of drainage control structures (More....). The climate team continues to offer their outstanding online course on climate change and animal ag. There are several organic production resources, including guidance on developing a nutrient management plan for organic farms. You will also find a grazing app, crop life cycle assessment research, and many great events and announcements. More...

March 31, 2014
EPA Takes Action to Protect Public from an Illegal Nano Silver Pesticide in Food Containers; Cites NJ Company for Selling Food Containers with an Unregistered Pesticide Warns Large Retailers Not to Sell These Products

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has issued an order to the Pathway Investment Corp. of Englewood, New Jersey to stop the sale of plastic food storage containers that have not been tested or registered with the EPA, in violation of federal pesticides law. The company’s Kinetic Go Green Premium Food Storage Containers and Kinetic Smartwist Series Containers both contain nano silver as an active ingredient, and the company markets other products as containing nano silver, which the company claims helps reduce the growth of mold, fungus and bacteria. Such claims can only be made on products that have been properly tested and are registered with the EPA.

March 25, 2014
EPA and Army Corps of Engineers Clarify Protection for Nation’s Streams and Wetlands: Agriculture’s Exemptions and Exclusions from Clean Water Act Expanded by Proposal
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps) today jointly released a proposed rule to clarify protection under the Clean Water Act for streams and wetlands that form the foundation of the nation’s water resources. The proposed rule will benefit businesses by increasing efficiency in determining coverage of the Clean Water Act. The agencies are launching a robust outreach effort over the next 90 days, holding discussions around the country and gathering input needed to shape a final rule.
Please visit www.epa.gov/uswaters for more information.

March 18, 2014
Pesticide News Story: National Poison Prevention Week: Simple Steps You Can Take to Prevent Poisoning
During National Poison Prevention Week, March 16-22, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is highlighting the dangers of removing pesticides and other household chemicals from their original containers and storing them in bottles or cans that can be mistaken for beverages. According to recently published poison-center data, annually more than 145,000 calls to poison centers involved disinfectants and other pesticides. Moreover, based on data from 1998-2009, the California Poison Control System and the Central California Children's Hospital identified more than 1,400 cases of accidental poisoning caused by storage of non-food substances in soda bottles, unmarked bottles, cups or glasses. Most poisoning happens in people's homes and is preventable.

Pesticide News Story: Industry Beta Testing for the Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program’s Electronic Response Module
The EPA is developing a fully electronic, Web-based submission system to handle responses to future Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP) test orders.
During the week of March 31, 2014, EPA will be conducting Industry Beta Testing of the response module. This test will allow industry participants to access the test module and provide feedback on the response module prior to the tool’s launch. This feedback will be key to the successful development of this and future electronic submission systems.

March 14, 2014
EPA, Sergeant’s Pet Care and Wellmark International Reach Agreement to Cancel Potentially Harmful Insecticide Products

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has reached agreement with Sergeant's Pet Care Products, Inc. and Wellmark International to cancel flea and tick pet collars containing propoxur marketed under the trade names including Bansect, Sentry, Zodiac and Biospot.

March 12, 2014
EPA Awards More than $500,000 to Schools to Help Reduce Children’s Exposure to Pesticides / Integrated pest management practices are shown to reduce pesticide use

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced three grants to facilitate integrated pest management practices in schools. This funding will help reduce student’s exposure to pests and pesticides in the nation’s schools, while saving money, energy and pesticide treatment costs.

EPA Files Complaint Against Zep, Inc. in Atlanta, GA for Alleged Violations of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has filed a complaint against Zep, Inc., located in Atlanta, GA, alleging the sale and distribution of an unregistered and misbranded pesticide, “Formula 165”, between April 21, 2010, and January 6, 2012, in violation with the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA).

TODAY: U.S. EPA Administrator to Address National Congress of American Indians
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy will address the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) this afternoon during the 2014 NCAI Executive Council Winter Session.

March 10, 2014
EPA Inspections Reveal Clean Water Act Violations by Former Dairy Owner near Rock Valley, Iowa
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) personnel conducted a series of inspections in March and May 2013 at the Double V Dairy, LLC, near Rock Valley, Iowa. As a result of the inspections, the former owner of the dairy has agreed to pay a $75,000 civil penalty to settle alleged violations of the Clean Water Act, according to a proposed consent agreement.

March 3, 2014
UPDATE: Here's What They're Saying about EPA's Final Cleaner Fuel and Car Standards

Based on extensive input from auto manufactures, refiners, states and public health and environmental organizations, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced sensible standards for cars and gasoline that will significantly reduce harmful pollution, prevent thousands of premature deaths and illnesses, while also enabling efficiency improvements in the cars and trucks we drive. These cleaner fuels and cars standards are an important component of the administration’s national program for clean cars and trucks, which also include historic fuel efficiency standards that are saving new vehicle owners at the gas pump today. The standards will significantly reduce ground-level ozone, particulate matter, benzene and other air toxics in the air we breathe.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

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February, 2014
February Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center NewsletterExit EPA
The February issue presents a webcast on gasification of manure, a new page on questions to ask before pursuing manure-to-energy technologies, biosecure manure management, and an online course on climate change and animal ag. The 'national resources' section includes an announcement on the locations of USDA's climate hubs, and a study comparing the environmental footprint of poultry production over the past 50 years. Hot topics include a beginning farmer success story, biochar scrubber for mercury, soil health, and a swine phosphorus survey. The events section grew this month and is a must-see. More...

February 28, 2014
EPA Reorganizes Pesticide Registration Information on Web
EPA has created a new area on its website that contains all of its information on pesticide registration. Pulling from existing material, the new pesticide registration area is designed to help users find what they need easily and quickly. Under clearly defined topic headings, visitors to this new Web area will have easy access to information on: pesticide registration, fees and fee waivers, how to register a pesticide, types of registrations under pesticide laws, types of pesticides that can be registered, and registration forms and guidance documents. EPA’s new pesticide registration site can be found at http://www2.epa.gov/pesticide-registration.

February 26, 2014
EPA’s Pesticide Registration Improvement Act Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2013 Now Available
The EPA’s Pesticide Registration Improvement Act Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2013 is now available. This report covers the completion of the tenth year under PRIA. Under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, the EPA is required to publish an annual report describing the agency’s implementation of PRIA. The Act authorizes the agency to collect two types of fees from registrants: registration service fees and maintenance fees. It also establishes statutory time frames for completing certain actions.

February 20, 2014
EPA Proposes New Safety Measures to Protect Farm Workers from Pesticide Exposure
Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced proposed revisions to the Worker Protection Standard in order to protect the nation’s two million farm workers and their families from pesticide exposure.
“Today marks an important milestone for the farm workers who plant, tend, and harvest the food that we put on our tables each day,” said Gina McCarthy, EPA Administrator. “EPA’s revised Worker Protection Standard will afford farm workers similar health protections to those already enjoyed by workers in other jobs. Protecting our nation’s farm workers from pesticide exposure is at the core of EPA’s work to ensure environmental justice.”

EPA awards $496,000 to the State of Utah to reduce diesel emissions along the Wasatch Front
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded the Utah Department of Environmental Quality a $496,000 grant to reduce diesel emissions from heavy- duty trucks based in seven counties along the Wasatch Front, an area challenged by levels of particulate matter that exceed federal air quality standards.

EPA Grant Will Help Univ. of Vermont Research on Reducing Pesticide Risks for Bees
EPA recently awarded an agricultural grant for $131,758 to the University of Vermont for a project to develop and promote Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices to reduce the use of potentially harmful pesticides and lower risk to bees all while controlling pests and saving money.
Specifically, the UVM project is designed to reduce pesticide use and improve pest control, while increasing crop yields on 75 acres of hops in the Northeast. Under this project, researchers will develop and distribute outreach materials to help farmers adopt these practices. The project’s goal is to reduce insecticide and fungicide applications by 50 percent while decreasing numerous insect pests and downy mildew, a plant disease.

Proposed Agricultural Worker Protection Standard: EPA Needs Your Input
On February 20, 2014, the Environmental Protection Agency announced proposed changes to the agricultural Worker Protection Standard (WPS) to increase protections from pesticide exposure for the nation's 2 million agricultural workers and their families. This is an important milestone for the farm workers who plant, tend, and harvest the food that we put on our tables each day.
We are seeking your input by the date specified in the Federal Register notice, which will publish within 10 days at http://www.regulations.gov identified by docket number EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0184-0002. In the meantime, read the pre-publication copy (346 pp, 969k, About PDF). Your comments will help EPA to determine the final version of this regulation.

February 12, 2014
TODAY EPA Administrator to Join San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro for Press Conference at Solar Farm and Water Treatment Facility
Today, following a tour at the Dos Rios Water Recycling Center and Centennial Solar Farms, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy will join San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro and San Antonio utility executives for a press conference to highlight San Antonio’s leadership in sustainability, water conservation and clean energy in the face of a changing climate. The energy and water recycling site is a model of how local utilities can work together to mitigate the impacts of climate change.

February 11, 2014
EPA Administrator Reaffirms Commitment to Environmental Justice on 20th Anniversary of Executive Order
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy today reaffirmed the Agency’s commitment to environmental justice in a meeting of the National Environmental Justice Advisory Council (NEJAC) held in Denver, Colorado. The meeting coincides with a Presidential Proclamation by President Obama commemorating the 20th anniversary of the February 11, 1994 signing of Executive Order 12898, “Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations.”

February 10, 2014
EPA Administrator McCarthy Joins Senior Obama Administration Officials in Fort Collins to Discuss Local Climate Change Efforts
Tomorrow, Gina McCarthy, Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Nancy Sutley, Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality; and David Agnew, Director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs will join Fort Collins Mayor Karen Weitkunat to tour projects to restore the Cache la Poudre River and strengthen its resilience to climate change impacts such as higher temperatures and extreme weather events. When floods struck the Front Range of Colorado in September 2013, the City’s proactive planning and river habitat conservation efforts helped mitigate the impacts on Fort Collins. Following the tour, the officials will hold a press conference at the Natural Resources Research Center in Fort Collins, which is one of seven Climate Hubs launched by the U.S. Department of Agriculture last week to offer the practical, science-based tools and strategies farmers and ranchers need to adapt and succeed in the face of a changing climate.

February 6, 2014
Pesticide News Story: EPA Announces Final Plan for Federal Certification of Pesticide Applicators within Indian Country
Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is releasing the EPA Plan for the Federal Certification of Applicators of Restricted Use Pesticides (RUPs) within Indian Country. The EPA is taking this step to make RUPs available for use in Indian country where no current certification mechanisms exist. This action will give pesticide applicators who apply or seek to apply in Indian country access to the same pest control tools available elsewhere in the United States and ensure that these applicators have met competency standards.

Publicly Available Tool Reports On Different Types of Pollution
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) data is now available for the reporting year of 2012. This annual report provides citizens with critical information about their communities, including data on certain toxic chemical releases to the air, water, and land, as well as information on waste management and pollution prevention activities by facilities across the country.

February 5, 2014
Pesticide News Story: EPA Announces Improvements to Protect the Rights of Data Owners and Ensure Compliance with Data Compensation Rules

EPA is announcing a final rulemaking to improve protection for data submitters, and a new guidance for EPA risk managers to improve compliance assurance. EPA expects that these changes will lead to greater efficiencies in the registration process, allowing applicants to benefit from greater clarity regarding when data compensation procedures should apply.

Pesticide News Story: Memorandum of Understanding on the Migratory Bird Treaty Act – Now Available for Public Comment
A draft Memorandum of Understanding between the Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Pesticide Programs and the Department of the Interior’s Fish and Wildlife Service to protect migratory birds is now available for public comment. The comment period will end March 7, 2014. To submit comments, go to the docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2013-0744 at www.regulations.gov. We will evaluate the comments and determine if significant changes will be made to the draft MOU. EPA anticipates signing the MOU at the annual Council for the Conservation of Migratory Birds meeting in April 2014.

February 04, 2014 
Central Data Exchange Registration Walkthrough for EDSP Test Order Recipients (Pesticides) – Tuesday, February 25, 2014 
EPA is developing a fully electronic, Web-based submission system to handle the receipt of responses to future Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP) test orders. Recipients of these orders will be required to register with and submit through the Central Data Exchange (CDX) to use this system.
On Tuesday, February 25, 2014, from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET, EPA will be conducting, for pesticide stakeholders, a Web-based walk through of the registration process in preparation for these orders.  Please note that the focus of the session is on the registration process, and that specific reporting requirements will not be discussed during the demonstration.

EPA's 2012 Toxics Release Inventory Shows Air Pollutants Continue to Decline 
Total releases of toxic chemicals decreased 12 percent from 2011-2012, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) annual Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) report released today. The decrease includes an eight percent decline in total toxic air releases, primarily due to reductions in hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

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