US EPA restricts use of pesticide phosphine fumigants

07 April 2010 18:01  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS news)--The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday announced new restrictions on aluminum and magnesium phosphide pesticide products.

The restrictions would prohibit all uses of the products around residential areas, increase buffer zones for treatment around non-residential buildings that could be occupied by people or animals, and create more protective product labelling, the agency said.

"These new safeguards prohibit the use of these toxic pesticides near homes and impose restrictions to protect our families from exposure to them," said Steve Owens, assistant administrator of the EPA’s office of prevention, pesticides and toxic substances.

Aluminum and magnesium phosphide fumigants were used primarily to control insects in stored grain and other agricultural commodities, the agency said.

They were also used to control burrowing rodents in outdoor agricultural and other non-domestic areas, it added.

The agency was expediting approval of the new labels, it said. The primary manufacturer of the products was already voluntarily implementing the changes, it added without identifying the producer.

More information about aluminum and magnesium phosphide is available on the agency’s website.

In related industry news, the EPA this week announced it planned to add 16 chemicals to its toxics release inventory list.

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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