Groups Take EPA to Task Over Pesticide Evaluation

The U.S. EPA is under fire from several directions over its procedures for approving pesticides. A report released today by the Center for Biological Diversity claims that the EPA “has shown reckless disregard for the impact of its pesticide regulation program on wildlife, and most importantly, endangered species.” The group criticizes the agency for approving the use of chemicals that are having devastating effects on the roughly 375 threatened and endangered animals and plants exposed to portions of the more than 2 billion pounds of chemicals used on U.S. crops and lawns each year. Yesterday, Earthjustice, representing a coalition of conservation and fisheries groups, sent a letter to EPA head honcho Mike Leavitt announcing its intention to file a lawsuit against the agency in two months unless it improves its assessment of the risk of various chemicals to threatened and endangered Northwest salmon.