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Pesticide News Story: USA Today: EPA ensures safety

For Release: April 12, 2013

Your article "Study: Two-thirds of pesticides got flawed EPA approval" about EPA's process for ensuring the safety of chemicals in consumer products, mischaracterizes federal law and the agency's work to protect people's health and the environment.

Consistent with federal pesticide laws, a pesticide never enters the marketplace without testing to ensure safety for both human health and the environment.

The Environmental Protection Agency allows expanded uses of already-registered pesticides (known as conditional registration) only if there are sufficient data to ensure that human health and the environment are protected. Based on EPA's in-depth analysis in 2012, over 90% of conditionally registered products involve pesticides that are identical to pesticides already in the marketplace, or differed only in ways that EPA scientists believed would not significantly increase any negative effects.

While EPA acknowledges its data system contains record-keeping errors for some products incorrectly labeled as "conditional," it's important to note that the misidentified products met all applicable safety standards. EPA is implementing a plan to correct these record-keeping errors.

Jim Jones, Acting Assistant Administrator; EPA; Washington, D.C.

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