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News Archive: June 2007

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June 29
Worker Protection Standard Correction
A correction has been made in the Worker Protection Standard in Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Parts 150 to 189, revised as of July 1, 2006. In Sec. 170.112, on page 212, paragraph (a)(1) is corrected to read as follows:

Technical Changes in Pesticide Tolerance Nomenclature
EPA has made a technical amendment to remove duplicate entries in the terminology of certain commodity terms listed under 40 CFR part 180, subpart C. EPA is taking this action to establish a uniform listing of commodity terms. This final rule is effective on June 29, 2007.

FIFRA Scientific Advisory Panel To Consider Atrazine Effects on Amphibians
The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA SAP) will meet October 9-12, 2007, to consider and review a set of issues pertaining to the potential for atrazine to affect amphibian gonadal development. The meeting will be held in Arlington, Virginia.

June 27
U.S., Mexican, Canadian Environmental Leaders Promote Green Building, Pollution Tracking
Highlighting their shared commitment to environmental progress in North America, EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson joined his Mexican and Canadian counterparts to launch new collaborative environmental initiatives on green building and tracking pollution in North America. The officials met in Morelia, Mexico, for the 14th Council Session of the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC), an organization created by Canada, Mexico, and the United States to address regional environmental concerns.

June 26
Chemical Spill Reporting Violations: EPA Settles Indiana, Michigan, Ohio Cases
EPA Region 5 recently settled administrative cases involving hazardous chemical release reporting violations in Rensselaer, Indiana, Remus, Michigan, and Mark Center, Ohio. All three cases involved anhydrous ammonia, which is commonly used in commercial refrigeration systems and as fertilizer. Anhydrous ammonia releases of greater than 100 pounds must be immediately reported to the National Response Center.

June 25
EPA To Discuss Renewable Fuels at St. Louis Workshop and Expo
EPA Region 7 Administrator John B. Askew will deliver remarks at the 2007 International Fuel Ethanol Workshop and Expo on June 27 and present two ENERGY STAR Combined Heat and Power Awards.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

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June 22
Southeast Diesel Collaborative Conference To Be Held in Atlanta
EPA will join a consortium of federal, state, and local government agencies, non-profit, and industry organizations to hold the Southeast Diesel Collaborative Second Annual Partners Conference in Atlanta on June 26-27, 2007. The goal of the collaborative is to improve air quality by encouraging the use of clean, renewable energy, and by reducing diesel emissions from existing engines and equipment. The conference will focus on nationally and regionally significant diesel emissions issues, bringing together experts for strategic planning for 2008 to promote clean, renewable fuels, and emerging clean diesel technology for the agriculture/biodiesel, heavy construction, and on-road sectors.

Comment Period Extended for Soil Fumigants
As part of EPA's ongoing evaluation of soil fumigant pesticides, and based on multiple requests from stakeholders, the Agency is extending the public comment period on risk reduction options until September 3, 2007. On May 2, 2007, EPA issued revised human health risk assessments and requested public comment on risk-reduction options for the soil fumigants: methyl bromide, metam sodium, dazomet, and chloropicrin. Another soil fumigant, 1,3-dichloropropene (telone) is included for comparison purposes, but its reassessment is complete and few, if any, regulatory changes are anticipated.

June 21
EPA Reaches $10,000 Settlement With Pacific Topsoils, Inc., for Wetlands Violations
Pacific Topsoils, Inc., located just southeast of Mill Creek, Washington and EPA have reached a $10,000 settlement over violations of the Clean Water Act. In 2002, Forman and Pacific Topsoils, Inc., discharged fill material into 0.32 acres of wetlands on the east side of 35th Southeast, near Mill Creek, WA without a permit, according to EPA.

June 20
Notice of Approval of Colorado State Plan for Certification of Applicators of Restricted Use Pesticides
EPA approved the amended Colorado State Plan for the certification of applicators of restricted use pesticides contingent upon Colorado's promulgation of appropriate revised State Rules and Regulations pertaining to the Administration and Enforcement of the Colorado Pesticide Applicators' Act.

Availability of Mefluidide Risk Assessments
This notice announces the availability of EPA's risk assessments, and related documents for the pesticide mefluidide, and opens a public comment period on these documents. The public is encouraged to suggest risk management ideas or proposals to address the risks identified. Comments must be received on or before August 20, 2007.

June 18
EPA Orders Rohrer Partnership To Restore Powell County Wetlands
Region 8 has issued an administrative order to the Rohrer Family Limited Partnership requiring them to correct the environmental damage they caused to approximately six acres of wetlands adjacent to Cottonwood Creek and Douglas Creek in Powell County, Mont. EPA will require the Rohrers to fully restore the wetlands that they damaged.

Draft List of Initial Pesticide Active Ingredients and Pesticide Inerts To Be Considered for Screening Under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act
Section 408(p) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) directs EPA to develop a chemical screening program using appropriate validated test systems and other scientifically relevant information to determine whether certain substances may have hormonal effects. In September 2005, EPA published its approach for selecting the initial list of chemicals for which testing will be required under the Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP). This document presents the draft list of the first group of chemicals that will be screened in the Agency's EDSP. Comments must be received on or before September 17, 2007.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

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June 15
EPA Applicator Certification Card Required to Purchase and/or Apply Restricted Use Pesticides in Navajo Indian Country
EPA has established a federal program to certify those who intend to purchase and/or apply Restricted Use Pesticides (RUPs) in Navajo Indian Country.  Anyone intending to purchase and/or apply restricted use pesticides in Navajo Indian Country must complete EPA Form 8500-17-N and submit it to EPA Region 9 by 120 days after June 13 2007, the publication date of the Federal Register Notice announcing the implementation of the program. After that date, applicators must hold the appropriate EPA certification card to purchase and/or apply pesticides in Navajo Indian Country.

EPA Settles With Hospital Laundry Services and Snappy Apple Farms for Chemical Inventory Reporting Violations
EPA Region 5 recently settled two cases of hazardous chemical reporting violations involving Hospital Laundry Services and Snappy Apple Farms. The facilities are located in Wheeling, Ill., and Casnovia, Mich. Federal law requires that local authorities be notified of hazardous chemicals storage. In the event of a fire or emergency, responders need to know what they are dealing with so they can take steps to protect people living or working in the area. Snappy Apple Farms, 961 Newaygo Road, Casnovia, Mich., paid $7,919 and agreed to perform a supplemental environmental project costing $4,581 to resolve an EPA May 2007 complaint for failure to submit to state and local authorities the required chemical inventory forms for 2002-2004. The facility exceeded the reporting threshold for anhydrous ammonia by 16 times.

June 14
EPA Settles With SoCal Mold Prevention Company
EPA has reached a settlement with American Mold Guard, Inc., a San Juan Capistrano, Calif. mold prevention company, for $11,700 for alleged violations of federal pesticide law. The EPA determined that the company, located at 30200 Rancho Viejo Road, had been repackaging AMG-X40 - a registered pesticide - into 2 oz. containers, and distributing them as samples to customers who received its mold prevention services. The samples were missing most of the pesticide’s required labeling, including warnings against skin contact and first aid directions in case skin contact occurred.

EPA Collaborates With Farmers on the First Nationwide Study of Air Emissions from Animal Feeding Operations
EPA announced the beginning of the first-ever nationwide study of air emissions from poultry, dairy, and swine animal feeding operations (AFOs). With EPA oversight, researchers from eight universities will take part in the two-year, $14.6 million study to measure levels of hydrogen sulfide, particulate matter, ammonia, nitrous oxide, volatile organic compounds, and other gases from livestock facilities. The research officially begins June 14 at 24 sites in nine states.

June 13
EPA Announces New Web Site Listing Regulations With Potential Impact on Agriculture
EPA announced a new Web site containing an easy and succinct look-up tool listing federal environmental regulations that could potentially apply to agriculture. Knowing the regulations beforehand will allow farmers to address these issues before they become problems.  This Web site is an outgrowth of EPA's National Strategy for Agriculture, signed by EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson in May 2006, which aims to improve communication, collaboration and innovation with the agricultural community to build a more environmentally productive relationship.

EPA Settles Pesticide Case With Del Monte Fresh Produce
EPA fined Del Monte Fresh Produce Co., a Kunia, Hawaii fruit grower, $24,640 for improperly using registered pesticides, a violation of federal pesticide law. The company allegedly misused the registered pesticides Telone II, Assure II, and Diazinon 50 W Pro during their application at its Kunia pineapple facility in 2004 and 2005. The company failed to comply with label directions regarding pesticide application and precautions to protect worker health and the environment.

Availability of Risk Assessments for Risk Reductions Options for Octhilinone
This notice announces the availability of EPA's risk assessments, and related documents for the pesticide 2-octyl-3 (2H)- isothiazolone (also known as octhilinone), and opens a public comment period on these documents. The public is encouraged to suggest risk management ideas or proposals to address the risks identified. EPA is developing a Reregistration Eligibility Decision (RED) for octhilinone through a modified, 4-Phase public participation process that the Agency uses to involve the public in developing pesticide reregistration decisions. Through this program, EPA is ensuring that all pesticides meet current health and safety standards. Comments must be received on or before July 13, 2007.

Availability of Reregistration Eligibility Decision for Antimycin A
This notice announces the availability of EPA's Reregistration Eligibility Decision (RED) for the pesticide antimycin A and opens a public comment period on this document. The Agency's risk assessments and other related documents also are available in the antimycin A docket. Antimycin A is a restricted use pesticide applied directly to water - primarily by Federal and state agencies - to eliminate invasive or unwanted fish species. EPA has reviewed antimycin A through the public participation process that the Agency uses to involve the public in developing pesticide reregistration and tolerance reassessment decisions. Through these programs, EPA is ensuring that all pesticides meet current health and safety standards. Comments must be received on or before August 13, 2007.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

June 12
EPA Extends Application Deadline for Grant for Assistance to Livestock Operators
EPA has announced a $7.9 million grant opportunity through which the Agency will help livestock operators prevent water discharges and reduce air emissions by identifying environmental challenges and learning ways to address them. EPA is seeking applicants for the funding opportunity, which the Agency is posting as an open solicitation. The grant recipient will provide livestock operations with two types of technical assistance at no cost to the operator: voluntary comprehensive assessments of water and air quality environmental challenges along with recommendations for strategies to mitigate these challenges; and, development or review of the facility's nutrient management plan. Eligible livestock operations include facilities of all sizes in all animal sectors throughout the United States. The new deadline for applying is July 13, 2007.

June 11
EPA To Begin Screening Pesticides for Endocrine Effects
EPA is in the final stages of preparation for a program to screen pesticides for their potential effect on the endocrine system. The Agency is seeking comment on the draft list of 73 pesticides to be evaluated under the new screening regimen. The pesticides on the list were selected for screening based on their high potential for exposure to people or the environment, and not on possible endocrine disruption effects. The ultimate purpose of the screening will be to determine if the pesticides can adversely influence the endocrine system. Comments must be recieved within 90 days after the publication of the Federal Register Notice.

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June 8
$1.7 Million Available for New Clean Diesel Projects in Northeast
EPA is making nearly $1.7 million available for clean diesel projects under the 2007 Northeast Diesel Collaborative Emissions Reductions Grant Program. Project applications are being accepted under two national clean diesel programs: Clean School Bus USA and the Voluntary Diesel Retrofit program. Projects may include a variety of diesel emissions reductions solutions such as add-on pollution control technology, engine or vehicle replacement, idle reduction technologies or strategies, and/or cleaner fuel use. All projects must benefit the air quality in the geographic areas that include Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, the U.S. Virgin Islands and/or Vermont; and tribal lands belonging to the federally recognized Indian tribes in these regions. The deadline for applying is July 31, 2007.

June 6
EPA Reopens Comment Period for Food Packaging Treated With Pesticides
EPA is reopening the public comment period for a proposed rule concerning pesticide-treated food packaging, which was published in the Federal Register of April 6, 2007. Written comments were due by April 21, 2007. EPA received, considered, and accepted a petition to extend the public comment period, and so has reopened the comment period for an additional 30 days. Comments must be received on or before July 6, 2007.

EPA Seeks Comments on Draft Guidance for Antimicrobial Products With Anthrax-Related Claims
EPA is seeking public comment on a draft Pesticide Registration Notice entitled "Guidance for Antimicrobial Pesticide Products With Anthrax-Related Claims.'' This notice would, once final, provide guidance to prospective registrants of antimicrobial products that make labeling claims to inactivate Bacillus anthracis (anthrax) spores. Comments must be received on or before September 4, 2007.

National Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center June Newsletter and Webcast Exit EPA
The June edition of the National Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center (LPE) newsletter is available. Topics include: Webcast Series Takes a Break in July and August; Value of Manure Resources Available; LPE Learning Center Expands to Ten Teams; Vegetative Treatment Systems Research and Demonstration Resources; and Vegetative Treatment Systems Being Evaluated for Large Feedlots. The June 15 Webcast features Mr. Reg Clause of the Iowa State University, and Professor Erik Lichtenberg and Professor Doug Parker of the University of Maryland, speaking on "Value Added Processing of Manure."

North Carolina Nonprofit Receives $100,000 Grant To Reduce Residents' Exposure to Pollution From Hog Farms
EPA has awarded $100,000 to the Rural Empowerment Association for Community Help (REACH), a nonprofit organization in Warsaw, N.C., for work to reduce residents' exposure to air and water contaminants associated with local hog operations in Duplin County. The award is part of EPA's Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving program, which supports environment and public health improvements in low-income communities around the nation. Since 1994, EPA has provided over $31 million in funding to more than 1,100 community-based organizations. The REACH project is one of 10 being funded this year nationwide.

June 5
EPA Approves Natural Refuge for Insect Resistance Management in Bollgard II Cotton
To reduce the likelihood that insects will become resistant to Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) plant-incorporated protectant (PIP), EPA has approved the use of alternative crop plants and weeds -- a natural refuge -- instead of a structured non-Bt cotton refuge for Bollgard II (Registered Trademark) cotton. Careful scientific review has shown that insect resistance management can be accomplished by using only alternative crops and weeds in combination with plantings of Bollgard II cotton from Texas to the mid-Atlantic.

EPA, Army Corps Issue Joint Guidance To Sustain Wetlands Protection Under Supreme Court Decision
EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have issued joint guidance for their field offices to ensure that America's wetlands and other water bodies are protected under the Clean Water Act (CWA). The guidance is consistent with the Supreme Court's decision in the consolidated cases Rapanos v. United States and Carabell v. United States regarding the scope of the agencies' jurisdiction under the CWA. This interagency guidance will enable the agencies to make clear, consistent, and predictable jurisdictional determinations. The results, once posted on agency Web sites, will document how the scope of the Clean Water Act jurisdiction is being determined. EPA and Corps staff will also use the guidance when taking enforcement actions under the CWA. The guidance clarifies those circumstances where a person may need to obtain a CWA Section 404 permit before conducting activities in wetlands, tributaries, and other waters. Comments must be received on or before December 5, 2007.

June 4
EPA Reaches Settlement With Aldis Manufacturing for Violating Federal Pesticide Rules
Aldis Manufacturing LTD (Aldis), located in Wilsonville, Oregon, reached a $3,120 settlement with the EPA for importing improperly labeled pesticides, in violation of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). According to EPA, on February 5, 2007, Aldis submitted a Notice of Arrival of Pesticides and Devices (Notice of Arrival) through their import broker declaring that they planned to import 95,400 kilograms of their recently registered pesticide, "Kull 62 MUP." Kull 62 MUP is a glyphosate-based chemical used in manufacturing other herbicide formulations and is produced in China. EPA discovered that the individual containers of Kull 62 MUP lacked the EPA-accepted label, and therefore were in violation of FIFRA. Aldis updated the misbranded labels of “Kull 62 MUP” quickly after they were told that the containers were improperly labeled.

Pesticide Registration Requests, Actions, and Tolerance Updates

Review of Draft Risk Management Evaluations and Risk Profiles for Chemicals Proposed for Addition Under the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants
This notice requests comments on draft risk management evaluations and on draft risk profiles being developed pursuant to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) for several chemicals, which are being reviewed for possible addition to the Stockholm Convention's Annexes. EPA is issuing this notice in advance of the aforementioned documents' release to increase awareness of the status of the reviews of certain proposals under the Stockholm Convention, to alert interested and potentially affected persons of the documents' pending release, and to request comments on them when they are available for EPA's consideration in its development of comments of the documents and its submission to the Stockholm Convention Secretariat.

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