APHIS proposes to remove the domestic quarantine for Emerald Ash Borer

Some of you may already be aware of this proposal, but I wanted to post it to highlight the comment period. See below.

APHIS is proposing to remove the domestic quarantine regulations for the emerald ash borer (EAB). Eliminating this regulation is in keeping with USDA’s goal of reducing regulations that have outlived their usefulness. The proposal would end APHIS’ domestic regulatory activities, which includes actions such as issuing permits, certificates and compliance agreements, making site visits, and conducting investigations of suspected violations, and instead direct all available resources toward managing the pest. APHIS remains committed to controlling this invasive pest and wants to conduct more research and release a greater number of biological control agents—tiny stingless wasps that are natural predators of the EAB—since biocontrol has shown the most promise for stopping EAB’s spread. Continue reading

EPA Announces Federal Register Notice Regarding the Availability of Worker Protection Training Materials

The Environmental Protection Agency is notifying the public that the Agency intends to publish in the Federal Register a notice stating the pesticide safety training materials with the expanded content required by the 2015 FIFRA Worker Protection Standard (WPS) are available for use. The notice of availability will be published in docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0184 on www.regulations.gov.

The training materials with expanded content have been available at the Pesticide Education Resources Collaborative (PERC) and were developed through an EPA cooperative agreement. EPA also approved training materials developed by other organizations, some of which are available on PERC’s website. Updated training materials must be used 180 days after the publication of the notice in the Federal Register. Continue reading

Information about July 17-20 FIFRA SAP Meeting on Resistance and Bt, Request for Comments on Experts for the Meeting, and June 5 Webcast on the Meeting Charge

On May 17, 2018, the Agency published a Federal Register notice announcing the location of the July 17-20, 2018, in-person meeting of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA SAP) to consider and review “Resistance of Lepidopteran Pests to Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) Plant Incorporated Plants in the U.S.” The meeting will be held in the Rosslyn Ballroom at the Holiday Inn Rosslyn at Key Bridge, 1900 North Fort Myer Drive, Arlington, VA 22209. Please refer to the March 5, 2018 Federal Register notice for additional information.

The Agency also announced that the associated 2-hour preparatory webcast meeting will be held on June 5, 2018, from approximately 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. ET. The preparatory webcast meeting, conducted via Adobe Connect and telephone, will consider and review the scope and clarity of the draft charge questions for the July 17-20, 2018, in-person meeting. Registration is required to participate during this meeting. Continue reading

EPA Requests Nominations for Experts to Serve on the July 17-20, 2018 FIFRA SAP Panel on Resistance in Lepidopteran Pests to Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) Plant Incorporated Protectants

On March 5, 2018, the Agency published a Federal Register notice (FRN) requesting nominations of experts to serve as ad hoc members on the July 17-20, 2018 Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA SAP) Panel meeting to consider and review resistance in Lepidopteran Pests to Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) Plant Incorporated Protectants in the U.S.

Nominations are due on or before April 4, 2018 and can be provided by following the instructions in the FRN in docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2017-0617 in www.regulations.gov or by forwarding the nominations to the Designated Federal Official listed below. Continue reading

EPA Announces Opportunity to Nominate Additional Experts to Serve as Ad Hoc Members for the FIFRA Scientific Advisory Panel Reviewing Physiologically-Based Pharmacokinetic (PBPK) Modeling

On December 18, 2017, the Agency published a Federal Register notice to announce the opportunity to provide additional nominations for experts to serve as ad hoc members for the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA SAP) reviewing PBPK modeling to address pharmacokinetic differences between and within species on six selected pesticidal active ingredients. The public can provide nominations until January 17, 2018.  Nominations can be provided by following the instructions in the Federal Register announcement (EPA-HQ-OPP-2017-0180) or by forwarding the nomination to the Designated Federal Official listed below.  Continue reading

FDA, USDA, and EPA to Hold Public Sessions on Agricultural Biotechnology

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in coordination with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs will be holding two public meetings to discuss FDA’s Agricultural Biotechnology Education and Outreach Initiative. This initiative calls for FDA to work with EPA and USDA to provide education and outreach to the public on agricultural biotechnology and food and animal feed ingredients derived from biotechnology. The purpose of the meetings is to provide the public an opportunity to share information, experiences, and suggestions to help inform the development of this education and outreach initiative.

The FDA is also accepting public comments on questions listed in the Federal Register Notice. Comments may be submitted through November 17, 2017. Continue reading

EPA Announces FIFRA Science Advisory Panel Meeting on PBPK and Asks for Nominations for Panel Members

On June 6, 2017, the EPA published a Federal Register Notice (EPA-HQ-OPP-2017-0180) for both the meeting and seeking nominees to serve as ad hoc expert members of the FIFRA SAP on  physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling at www.regulations.gov.

The FIFRA SAP serves as the primary scientific peer review mechanism of EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) and is structured to provide scientific advice, information, and recommendations to the EPA Administrator on pesticides and pesticide-related issues as to the impact of regulatory actions on health and the environment. Continue reading