EPA admits to misusing “conditional registration”

Clothianidin has been a major issue ever since we discovered the flawed Cutler-Dupree Life Cycle Study in 2009. This led to the rejection of the study upon review and the infamous “Leaked Memo.” Abuse of the Conditional Registration category is one of the charges raised in the suit filed last week by beekeepers and environmental groups.

In USA Today, Study: Two-thirds of pesticides get flawed epa approval.

In 1978, Congress gave the EPA authority to issue approvals on a conditional basis — often for a period of time while initial or additional testing occurs — for pesticides needed to address public health emergencies. It intended for the agency to use this authority sparingly.

The EPA says that before granting a conditional registration, it must still determine that a pesticide’s use would not significantly increase the risk of “unreasonable adverse effects” on the environment during the time needed to obtain the necessary data.

“It’s kind of a black hole. … We don’t know what percentage of pesticides were tested”before approval, Wu says, arguing the EPA’s database is disorganized and lacks transparency. The NRDC calls on the EPA to review all conditionally approved pesticides to ensure their safety and to make submitted data accessible for public review.

In the EPA’s statement Wednesday, the agency said, “We will continue to work on improving record-keeping and have developed a plan to update the IT (information technology) systems to address that need.”

Wu is skeptical of the EPA’s comments about pesticide safety or its plans to improve its database. She says, “It’s like saying, ‘We really messed up, but trust us, everything’s fine now.'”

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