Posted by: Steven M. Taber | April 8, 2008

Group Files Lawsuit Against EPA Over 4 Pesticides

Farmworker advocates and environmentalists want a federal court to strike the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s decision allowing the use of four common pesticides.A Coalition group of Farmworker and Environmental advocates filed a lawsuit on Friday, April 4, 2008, arguing that four pesticides, originally derived from nerve gas, have put thousands of farmworkers and families at risk of serious illnesses, including cancer and reproductive deformities. The lawsuit, brought under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Endangered Species Act alleges that methidathion, ethoprop, methamidophos and oxydemeton-methyl, which are used on a wide variety of fruit, vegetable and nut crops, were not properly re-registered pursuant to the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996. The lawsuit states that the EPA found that the four substances posed risks to human health, but concluded their cost savings to growers outweighed the dangers.

The groups want the court to order EPA to make new re-registration eligibility decisions for the four organophosphate pesticides balancing the health, environmental, economic and social benefits against the risks and ensures that the proper Endangered Species Act consultations are performed.

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