On 11 June 2007, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that the agency is in the final stages of planning for a screening of pesticides for their potential effect on the endocrine system. The agency is seeking comment on the draft list of 73 pesticides to be evaluated under the new screening regimen.
The draft list of pesticide candidates were selected for screening based on their high potential for exposure to people or the environment, and not on possible endocrine disruption effects. The ultimate purpose of the screening will be to determine if the pesticides can adversely influence the endocrine system. This is not a draft list of potential endocrine disruptors.
“As a leader in endocrine disruptor research, EPA’s science driven approach ensures that the data generated by this new testing is comprehensive and based on the best available science,” said Jim Gulliford, EPA’s assistant administrator for Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances. “EPA remains committed to protecting public health through quality scientific research and collaboration.”
According to the EPA, “building validated screens to detect endocrine disruption has taken years of open scientific collaboration. This approach ensures that the data generated by this new testing regimen is comprehensive and scientifically sound. While the science in this area continues to expand rapidly, EPA’s goal remains to protect public health. Today’s draft list is the first set of chemicals considered for screening.”
EPA’s Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program, mandated under the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA), will determine whether certain chemicals have an effect on the endocrine system, using validated tests and other scientific information. Under FQPA, all pesticide chemicals will be screened, starting with this draft list.
EPA’s draft list focuses on those pesticide ingredients — active and inert — with relatively high potential for human exposure. The agency gave priority to pesticide active ingredients where there is the potential for human exposure through food and water, residential exposure to pesticide products, and high levels of occupational exposure following an application of agricultural pesticides. For pesticide inert ingredients, the priority was on those with high production volumes found in human or ecological tissues, water, and indoor air.
After considering comments on the draft list, EPA will issue a second Federal Register notice with the final list of chemicals.
More information about the draft list is available at http://www.epa.gov/endo/index.htm
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