As the nation’s primary pesticide regulatory agency, EPA makes decisions on a wide-range of pesticide uses in the United States. These decisions require that EPA review scientific data on risks that pesticides pose to wildlife, farm workers, pesticide applicators, and the general public through diet and exposure in homes, schools, parks, pools and golf courses.
The scientific data involved in these decisions is complex, so to make the best decisions possible, EPA often seeks technical advice from outside the Agency by consulting the Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP).
The SAP, established by Congress in 1975 through the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA):
- operates in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) of 1972;
- is composed of seven members representing a breadth of scientific disciplines;
- is augmented by additional experts (the Science Review Board, or SRB) who assist in reviews;
- reviews about 8 to 10 topics per year in public meetings in Arlington, VA; and
- publishes meeting minutes within 90 days of each meeting.
The scientists of the SAP and SRB neither make nor recommend policy decisions. They provide advice on the science used to make these decisions. Their advice is invaluable to the EPA as it strives to protect the American people from risks posed by pesticides. Read more about Federal Advisory Committees at EPA.
Additional information can be found in the SAP charter (PDF, 4 pp., 25 kb.) which was developed in 2006 to establish the SAP's mission and specific duties.