Sens. Mike Johanns and Pat Roberts have introduced legislation that would eliminate the need for specific application permits for various pesticides.
The senators argue that permits from the Clean Water Act are not necessary in addition to regulations already enforced concerning pesticide applications.
"Not only is EPA pursuing regulations that are economically crippling, they are also pursuing regulations that are clearly duplicative," Johanns said. "The agenda being pushed by this Administration's EPA amounts to more red tape, more roadblocks and more needless headaches."
Roberts added, "This double layer of red tape is costly to the agriculture industry and consumers. It also takes aim at public health departments by requiring permits on top of existing permits for pesticide use. This creates confusion and the potential for significant penalties. Our bill eliminates this redundant permit requirement while at the same time ensuring proper pesticide use through existing law."
Currently the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit is necessary for pesticide applications under the Clean Water Act. The senators say that the permit should not be needed as there are already label requirements and restrictions placed on those pesticides under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act.
The bill seeks to ensure that Clean Water Act permits are not needed for the applications of pesticides and amends FIFRA by stating that no permit shall be required for the use of a pesticide that is already registered under FIFRA.