IFB submits public comment to EPA regarding neonicotinoids

By Ashley Rice

Illinois Farm Bureau recently submitted public comment to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) docket on its Proposed Interim Decision on several neonicotinoids.

Neonicotinoids are a class of pesticides used in integrated pest management programs, applied on many row crops as well as horticultural and ornamental plants. They allow selective control over pests to aid in maintaining beneficial insects while keeping away pests.

EPA is currently reviewing neonicotinoids to primarily assess pollinator risk as part of its federal reregistration process.

“IFB acknowledges the importance of pollinator health, stewardship and education for growers,” explained Lauren Lurkins, IFB director of environmental policy. “Therefore, IFB believes EPA should consider the voluntary mitigation practices growers are already implementing when proposing restrictions.”

In response, IFB’s public comment concluded with the following:

“Although EPA claims there are other alternatives to justify these proposed restrictions, IFB asserts that other chemistries would not provide the same response as neonicotinoids and would likely result in higher quantities of pesticides applied, yield reduction and increased costs to growers. IFB urges EPA to refrain from placing additional restrictions on these neonicotinoids, given their unique value to growers.”

This story was provided by FarmWeekNow.com.