Farmworkers, Advocates Rejoice as CA Ends Sale of Chlorpyrifos
Friday, October 11, 2019
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – Farmworkers' groups are celebrating the end of at least a decade-long battle to ban a toxic pesticide in California after the state Environmental Protection Agency announced a new deal with manufacturers of chlorpyrifos. The pesticide no longer will be sold to growers in California after Feb. 6.
Nayamin Martinez, director of the Central California Environmental Justice Network, said studies have linked chlorpyrifos to serious health effects in kids.
"It's a very dangerous chemical that can cause harm, especially in brain development, for unborn children and young children who live in close proximity where this pesticide is applied," she said.
Chlorpyrifos is widely used to control pests on a variety of crops, including alfalfa, almonds, citrus, cotton, grapes and walnuts. Farmers still can spray their existing stocks through the end of next year as long as they respect buffer zones. The state has dedicated $5 million for grant money to search for an environmentally friendly alternative.
In 2016 under President Barack Obama, the EPA had decided to ban chlorpyrifos nationwide, but President Donald Trump's first EPA director, Scott Pruitt, reversed the decision against the advice of the agency's scientists. Martinez noted that Dow Chemical, a chlorpyrifos manufacturer, donated $1 million for the Trump inauguration.
"Dow was one of the main contributors to Trump's administration fund," she said, "so it's not surprising that at a federal level, this didn't happen, more for a political reason than anything else."
Martinez said rural Fresno, Kern and Tulare counties are the top users of chlorpyrifos in the state, with especially high usage near the Central Valley towns of Lindsay, Orange Cove and Tranquility.
The CalEPA announcement is online at calepa.ca.gov.
get more stories like this via email
RALEIGH, N.C. -- More than $1 million in COVID-19 relief grants are helping rural organizations increase their focus on locally sourced food relief…
DES MOINES, Iowa -- This fall, the Iowa Utilities Board is hosting meetings to inform the public about a proposed underground pipeline, which would …
MANDAN, N.D. -- North Dakota has had nearly 18,000 job openings in recent months, with roughly 1,000 in construction. A labor leader in the trades …
Health and Wellness
DAYTON, Ohio -- An Ohio county is taking a trauma-informed approach to its work on preventing marijuana use in teens. As marijuana policy changes …
DENVER -- As Congress considers making significant investments in the nation's child-care system, children's advocates say now is the time to make …
MONTEREY BAY, Calif. - This week, conservation groups are celebrating Sea Otter Awareness Week with online and in-person events across the state…
LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Admission to any state park in Nevada is free this coming Saturday, as part of the first Nevada Public Lands Week - with a series …
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A new Redistricting Advisory Council announced last week by Gov. Tom Wolf's office will focus on reducing gerrymandering as new …