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The Food Quality Protection Act + EPA's Pesticide Adverse Effects Reporting Rule = New Data and Better Pesticide Risk Decisions

May 1998

Citation: ELR 10241

Author: James Handley

Editors' Summary: With the enactment of the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996 (FQPA) amending both FIFRA and the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, EPA must perform a broad reassessment of pesticide risks and benefits, using more and better data than required previously. In response to this mandate, EPA recently promulgated an adverse effects reporting rule that will take effect on June 16, 1998. The new rule should provide EPA with an opportunity to obtain valuable data for performing the FQPA-mandated reassessment. This Article traces the events leading to the enactment of the FQPA, and discusses its broad reassessment requirements. The Article then reviews the substance of the new EPA adverse effects rule, including its pesticide registration requirements and reporting requirements. The Article further discusses enforcement of the new rule, and incentives for registrant compliance, such as EPA's Audit Policy and potential tort liability. To conclude, the author opines that the new rule provides EPA with a valuable window on the "real world" of pesticide adverse effects information.

Mr. Handley is an attorney in the Toxics and Pesticides Enforcement Division of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. The views expressed are solely his and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of EPA or the U.S. government. Mr. Handley holds an LL.M. (with highest honors) in environmental law from George Washington University, a J.D. from the University of Houston, and a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Delaware.