Sunday, May 28, 2006

WTF?! Bushco Bends Over For Industry (Again)

Big business has apparently come calling for a favor, and Bushco attempts to deliver. Surely that can be the only way to explain this outrage. Despite the advice of EPA scientists against approval of dangerous pesticides, the agency seeks to move forward.


WASHINGTON -- Union leaders representing Environmental Protection Agency scientists and other specialists assert that agency managers and pesticide-industry officials are exerting "political pressure" to allow continued use of a family of pesticides that might be harmful to children, infants and fetuses.

Accordingly, union leaders representing some 9000 EPA scientists have written a letter to Stephen Johnson, the EPA administrator, alleging that there has been pressure to reduce of testing practices.

In a letter to Stephen Johnson, EPA's administrator, the union leaders said scientists are being pushed to skip steps in their testing, and alleged that the "integrity of the science upon which agency decisions are based has been compromised."

This is apparently no history of such an event, made more significant by the administrator's status.

The protest from unions representing some 9,000 EPA scientists and other employees about a pending agency determination is unprecedented and a professional rebuke to Mr. Johnson, himself a scientist and former assistant administrator in charge of the agency's program to test the harmful effects of pesticides.

There is an August deadline for evaluation of 20 pesticides, some derived from World War II nerve gas research.

The letter said the agency faces an August deadline to re-evaluate a family of 20 organophosphate and carbamate pesticides,many of them stemming from World War II research on nerve gas. They include malathion, commonly used to kill mosquitoes, and a variety of other chemicals that are used in agriculture, gardens, on golf courses and on flea collars and pest strips.

The problem arises from a failure to review exposure limits as required by the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996.

This sums it up for me.

Jeff Ruch, executive director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, whose members include state and federal employees, said "the fact that this letter had to be sent at all is an utter disgrace."

Read the union leaders' letter of protest at: PDF Link

Look at the EPA Inspector General report on the inability to assess child neurotoxicity at: Link

See the Federal Register Notice on Pesticides; Procedural Regulations for Registration Review at: Link


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