EPA to Hold October 12, 2018 Meeting on PBPK/PD Models

On October 12, 2018 from 12:00-1:00 PM Eastern Time, EPA will host an external peer review panel to review the potential use of physiologically based pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic (PBPK/PD) models in the risk assessments for carbaryl, deltamethrin, and permethrin.

The public can listen to the panel’s meeting via webinar. To register, send an email to naimy.nina@epa.gov. Following the meeting, EPA will accept written comments on the models at www.regulations.gov in each of the chemicals’ registration review dockets for 30 days (carbaryl, EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0230; deltamethrin, EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0637; permethrin, EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0039). The panel’s charge questions and white paper are also available in the dockets. Continue reading

APHIS Publishes Final Rule to Expand Notice-Based Process for Importation and Interstate Movement of Fruits and Vegetables

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is expanding its use of a notice-based process for approving fruits and vegetables for importation into the United States. This will help APHIS achieve USDA’s goal of reducing regulations by eliminating the need for rulemaking to approve fruits and vegetables for import. This action does not in any way compromise the rigor of APHIS’ analysis for potential plant pest risks, nor our safeguarding efforts. Instead, it will streamline procedures and help to reduce the time it takes to approve commodities for entry into the United States. This change will also allow us to focus regulatory resources, which would otherwise be consumed with the lengthy rulemaking process, on other critical priorities. Continue reading

APHIS Seeks Comments on Draft Pest List for June plum from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has asked USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to authorize the importation of June plum for consumption into the continental United States, subject to irradiation at an approved U.S. irradiation facility.  APHIS has drafted a pest list that lists potential pests associated with the commodity.

APHIS shares draft pest risk assessments and pest lists to determine whether stakeholders have information that might lead us to revise the draft assessment before we identify pest mitigations and proceed with official regulatory action. Continue reading

EPA Extends Comment Period for Neonicotinoid Risk Assessments

At the request of stakeholders, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is extending the public comment period for recently released neonicotinoid insecticide risk assessments from February 20, 2018, to April 21, 2018. The Agency published preliminary ecological and human health risk assessments in December 2017 for the neonicotinoid insecticides, clothianidin, thiamethoxam, and dinotefuran, and a preliminary ecological risk assessment for imidacloprid (assessing risks to birds, mammals, non-target insects, and plants). In December 2017, the Agency also published new cotton and citrus benefits assessments for foliar applications of the neonicotinoids, as well as a response to public comments on the 2014 Benefits of Neonicotinoid Seed Treatment to Soybean Production Continue reading

EPA Releases Draft Risk Assessments for Glyphosate

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is releasing for public comment the draft human health and ecological risk assessments for glyphosate, one of the most widely used agricultural pesticides in the United States.

The draft human health risk assessment concludes that glyphosate is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans.  The Agency’s assessment found no other meaningful risks to human health when the product is used according to the pesticide label.  The Agency’s scientific findings are consistent with the conclusions of science reviews by a number of other countries as well as the 2017 National Institute of Health Agricultural Health Survey. Continue reading

APHIS Seeks Comments on several draft pest risk assessments

The governments of Swaziland, China and Brazil have asked USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to authorize the importation of various commodities for consumption into the continental United States.  APHIS has drafted a pest risk assessment that lists potential pests likely to remain on the commodity upon importation if no mitigations are applied.

These risk assessments include citrus, pomegranates and jujube. Continue reading

NIFA to Invest in Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced a competitive opportunity to conduct research on the environmental effects of genetically engineered (GE) organisms, including plants, animals, insects, and microorganisms. The $3.5 million in grants is available through NIFA’s Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research Grants (BRAG) Program.

The BRAG program supports applied and fundamental research to help federal regulators evaluate the effects of GE organisms on their environment. Proposals are solicited to support standard research projects or conference proposals that bring together stakeholders to discuss and evaluate science-based data relevant to environmental risk assessments or risk management related to biotechnology-developed organisms. Continue reading