EPA: Extremely Plodding Agency
The EPA is lagging far behind schedule in setting new pesticide restrictions based on risks to children, as called for in a 1996 law. By August 3 of this year, the agency was supposed to have set limits for the riskiest 5,500 pesticide uses, but the EPA has completed less than 40 percent of the job. The EPA has also missed a deadline for setting up a screening and testing program to determine whether some pesticides may disrupt people’s endocrine systems. Environmental and consumers groups, including the Natural Resources Defense Council and Consumers Union, filed suit this month charging that the EPA is moving too slowly. But chemical and agricultural groups filed suit in June charging that the EPA is moving too quickly, and a bill in Congress would force the EPA to slow its pesticide reassessment.