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Pesticide News Story: Public Meeting on Soil Fumigants Scheduled for July 13, 2005

For Release: June 24, 2005

EPA will hold a public meeting, known as a "Technical Briefing," to present to interested stakeholders the Agency's preliminary risk assessments for four soil fumigant pesticides: dazomet, metam sodium, methyl bromide, and 1,3-D (Telone). This meeting will be held on Wednesday, July 13, 2005, from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., at Sheraton Suites Alexandria, 801 North Saint Asaph Street, Alexandria, VA, telephone 703-836-4700 (map Exit EPA disclaimer ). The Technical Briefing will provide an opportunity for the public to learn more about the data, information, and methodologies that the Agency used in developing its preliminary risk assessments for these soil fumigant pesticides. Risk assessments for two other soil fumigants, chloropicrin and a new active ingredient, iodomethane, will follow about a month later due to recently submitted data which are currently under review.

The risk estimates provided in the upcoming assessments are of a preliminary nature and subject to refinement. The process that EPA uses to review chemicals through reregistration is intended to gather additional information and input from the public and stakeholders about exposure and risk that will be used to revise the risk estimates. EPA is evaluating the soil fumigants concurrently to ensure that its risk assessment approaches are consistent.

Later in this process, after soil fumigant uses and risks have been fully considered based on public input, EPA will develop risk conclusions and risk mitigation options as needed, again with public and stakeholder involvement. This process will ensure that risk tradeoffs and economic outcomes can be considered appropriately in reaching risk management decisions. By considering these pesticides through a robust public participation process, the Agency expects to reach informed, practical, and effective risk management decisions for the human health aspects of the soil fumigants during the next year. Using this approach, the Agency expects to address risks of concern while maintaining key use benefits.

On the day of the Technical Briefing, the risk assessments and related documents will be available in the Federal Docket Management System at www.regulations.gov and at http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/reregistration/. EPA will solicit public comment through Federal Register notices of availability, which are scheduled to be published on the day of the Technical Briefing. After considering public comments received, EPA will revise the risk assessments and develop any needed risk mitigation options. At that time, the public will have opportunities, including stakeholder meetings during public comment periods, to review the revised risk assessments and provide ideas and recommendations on risk mitigation. For information about EPA's Office of Pesticide Programs, visit http://www.epa.gov/pesticides.

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