EPA attempt to ban bird-killing pesticide runs into opposition
The U.S. EPA has proposed a ban on a pesticide lethal to birds, but is running into resistance from the company that produces the chemical. The pesticide, carbofuran, is typically used on crops such as corn, alfalfa, and potatoes, and has been linked to the dieoff of 558 separate bird flocks since 1972. A manager with pesticide manufacturer FMC Corp. says carbofuran, “when used according to its label, can be used without causing adverse effects.” But the EPA says the chemical poses an avian threat even when used as directed, and that safer alternatives exist. Nonetheless, Congressfolk from agricultural states have also asked the agency to withdraw its proposed ban on carbofuran. Wrote Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) in a letter to the EPA, “Utah farmers have expressed to me their mounting concerns over the reduction in the number of agricultural chemicals available to combat pests.” Perhaps said farmers would like to get in on the organic market?