(NaturalNews) Pesticide manufacturers reached an agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to stop the sale of chlorpyrifos, a powerful toxicant used as an insecticide in homes, lawns and gardens more than 14 years ago, due to associated health risks, according to a written report by Beyond Pesticides [PDF].
Chlorpyrifos are banned for use in homes, except in containers with treated baits. The organophosphate insecticide, a chemical created by Dow AgroSciences in 1965, is shockingly still used widely in agriculture, killing a variety of pests including rootworms, cockroaches, beetles, fire ants and many other insects.
It’s also used on golf courses, and to control fire ants and mosquitoes for public health purposes, according to the National Pesticide Information Center.
Chlorpyrifos are applied to grain, cotton, fruit, nut and vegetable crops and is registered for direct use on turkeys and sheep, dog kennels, horse site treatment and commercial establishments.
Due to its highly toxic nature, state pesticide regulators in California are seeking to limit the widely used chemical based on concerns that it poses an immense threat to people and the environment.
Applied to more than 60 different crops in California, chlorpyrifos are dangerous because they readily evaporate from leaf and soil surfaces, becoming airborne and morphing into a gas under high temperatures.
These chemical drifts, capable of traveling far from its source, are believed to be responsible for chemical poisonings in California’s Ventura, Tulare, Merced and Madera counties, according to the Pesticide Action Network.
Proposed law would allow county commissioners to deny permits to use chlorpyrifos
More than 136 people were exposed to chlorpyrifos drift between 2001 and 2011, according to the California Department of Pesticide Regulation.
The proposed restrictions would grant county commissioners the authority to require anyone applying the chemical to be trained and certified and to obtain a permit before spraying, reported The Fresno Bee.