WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced Dec. 12 that it is finalizing standards for applicators who apply restricted-use pesticides that are not available for purchase by the general public and require special handling.
“We are committed to keeping our communities safe, protecting our environment and protecting workers and their families,” said Jim Jones, EPA assistant administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. “By improving training and certification, those who apply these restricted use pesticides will have better knowledge and ability to use these pesticides safely.”
The EPA's action should reduce harm that comes from the pesticide misapplication that occurs when pesticides are used by someone other than a certified applicator or by someone working under their direct supervision. The EPA plans to enforce stricter requirements for applicators, including that those certified be at least 18. Pesticide certification tests will also need to be taken every five years.
Expected benefits of the stricter rules include fewer acute pesticide incidents to people, reduced chronic exposure and reduced incidents of ecological harm from pesticide use.