RISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment)® joined more than 350 pesticide user organizations this week, sending a letter to all members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives voicing support for the pesticide regulatory system currently in place under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) of 1972.
The letter is in response to legislation S. 3283, or ‘Protect America’s Children from Toxic Pesticides Act,” introduced in November 2021 by Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ). The bill’s aim is to amend FIFRA by removing certain pesticides from use, specifically:
- Organophosphate insecticides
- Neonicotinoid insecticides
Yet RISE says the legislation “would undermine the rigorous, science-based standards of FIFRA and threaten the availability of the safe and effective pesticide products that protect public health, pets, infrastructure, schools, waterways, green spaces, and food and agriculture production.” The proposed legislation would impact products and applications made for: vector control; protecting and enhancing homes and public places; for noxious and poisonous weed control; creating firebreaks and utility rights of way; protecting public infrastructure; and for controlling invasive and non-native species that harm native species and ecosystems.
According to a statement from Booker’s office, “Each year, the U.S. uses over a billion pounds of pesticides — nearly a fifth of worldwide use.” It continued, “Approximately one-third of annual U.S. pesticide use — over 300 million pounds from 85 different pesticides — comes from pesticides that are banned in the European Union. The pesticide regulation statute… contains many loopholes that put the interests of the pesticide industry above the health and safety of people and our environment.”
Megan Provost, RISE president, said, “Our members’ role is to protect public health and safety, infrastructure and the environment, so we must have the assurance of a federal regulatory process that supports science and innovation, along with safety and efficacy. The federal regulatory process established under FIFRA gives us this certainty with its robust scientific backing. Senator Booker’s bill rejects 50 years of established federal and state regulation and science in favor of an approach where science is absent.”
Provost continued by stressing the importance of the specialty pesticide and fertilizer industry and pesticide users to be engaged with their members of Congress and talk about the benefits of pesticide use and the existing regulatory framework. “The start of this new Congress gives all of us an opportunity to reach out to our members of Congress to share our expertise about pesticide regulation and application and to learn whether our state’s Senators are cosponsors of S. 3283,” she said.
RISE will continue actively monitoring S. 3283 and other anti-pesticide legislation. At this time, no companion bill to S. 3283 has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. Contact RISE at www.pestfacts.org for more information. To review S. 3283 and its language, click here. To download the letter sent to Members of Congress click here.
RISE is the national trade association representing manufacturers, formulators, distributors, and other industry leaders in the specialty pesticide and fertilizer industry.