Dicamba: EPA Aiming to Allow Use in 2018, With Additional Rules

Reuters writer Tom Polansek reported yesterday that, “The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is aiming to allow farmers to spray the controversial weed-killer dicamba next year, but with additional rules for its use, an official with the agency said on Tuesday.

Reuben Baris, acting chief of the herbicide branch of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Pesticide Programs, said the agency had not yet determined what steps it would take to mitigate problems associated with dicamba. The herbicide, which fights weeds resistant to another herbicide called glyphosate, was linked to widespread crop damage this summer.

“The EPA has been discussing with state regulators ways to prevent such crop damage.”

The article noted that, “Baris told a meeting of state regulatory officials in Washington, D.C., that the agency was ‘very concerned with what has occurred and transpired in 2017.’

“‘We’re committed to taking appropriate action for the 2018 growing season with an eye towards ensuring that the technology is available, number one, to growers but that it is used responsibly,’ he said.

“The EPA is in negotiations with Monsanto and BASF, which sell dicamba herbicides under different brands, to make changes regarding how they are used, Baris said.”

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