New Soil Fumigant Rules Set

Retailers whose grower-customers use soil fumigants do not need to panic that they might have missed yesterday’s deadline. Take a deep breath — the public comment period for key product reregistrations has been extended.

EPA’s original deadline for the public comment period on the Reregistration Eligibility Decisions (REDs) of Sept. 15 has been extended 45 days to Oct. 30.

On July 16, EPA issued a notice in the Federal Register of the availability of the Reregistration Eligibility Decisions (RED) for a 60-day public comment period for the soil fumigants chloropicrin, dazomet, metam sodium/potassium, and methyl bromide. Under the Pesticide Registration Improvement Act of 2003, EPA must complete REDs for nonfood use pesticides by Oct. 3, 2008. The purpose of the reregistration program is to mitigate risks associated with the use of older pesticides while preserving their benefits. Crop protection products that meet today’s scientific and regulatory standards may be declared "eligible" for reregistration.

Due to the large amount of information that is needed for comment, it was critical for these fumigants’ reregistration that the comment period be extended. The Agricultural Retailers Association EPA a request for an extension of the comment period, which has now been granted.

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