The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), through the new Endangered Species Protection Program (ESPP), is seeking to provide the best protection for endangered species from the use of pesticides while at the same time not placing an unnecessary burden on pesticide users, such as farmers, pest control firms, lawn care companies and golf courses.
Under the ESPP, if the EPA determines that additional restrictions are needed for the use of a particular pesticide, the label on that product will refer the user to “Endangered Species Protection Bulletins.” The bulletins will provide information on enforceable use limitations and will be available on the EPA’s ESPP Web site or through a toll free number, both of which will be listed on the pesticide label.
Bulletins will generally include a map of the counties or geographical areas where the bulletins are applicable, a description of the species being protected, a list of the pesticides of concern and their use limitations. Once referenced on a pesticide label, bulletins become mandatory, enforceable pesticide use limitations. Pesticide users who fail to follow label directions — including any use limitations contained in the Endangered Species Protection Bulletins, whether or not that failure results in harm to a listed species — could be subject to enforcement action by the Office of Pesticide Services.
For additional information or to determine if an Endangered Species Protection Bulletin is in place for the county in which you intend to use a pesticide, click here. If you have any questions or need further assistance, please contact Jeffrey Rogers, Environmental Program Planner, at Jeffrey.Rogers@vdacs.virginia.gov or 804.371.6561.