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Californians for Alternatives to Toxics v. Department of Food & Agric.

ELR Citation: 36 ELR 20030
Nos. No. A107088, (Cal. App. 1st Dist., 12/29/2005)

A court holds that a lower court erred in denying a citizen group's petition challenging the California Department of Food and Agriculture's (DFA's) certification of a program for controlling a crop disease with pesticides. The DFA abused its discretion by failing to fulfill its obligation under the California Environmental Quality Act to analyze the environmental effects of statewide pesticide use under the rapid response and containment elements of the program. Instead of analyzing environmental consequences of pesticide use, it repeatedly deferred to the California Department of Pesticide Regulation regulatory scheme. A lead agency, such as the DFA, cannot forego environmental analysis by relying on the certified regulatory and registration program operated by another agency.