WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing stronger training and certification standards for pesticide applicators who are certified to apply the riskiest pesticides, known as restricted use pesticides (RUPs). Federal regulations require applicators to be certified in order to apply RUPs. Additionally, RUPs may be used only by, or under the direct supervision of, certified applicators. The goal is to reduce the likelihood of harm from the misapplication of RUPs and ensure a consistent level of protection among states.
According to EPA, the new rule:
Enhances applicator competency standards to ensure that RUPs are used safely.
Establishes a first time-ever nation-wide minimum age of 18 for certified applicators and persons working under their direct supervision.
Requires all applicators to renew certifications every 3 years.
Requires additional specialized certifications for people using high-risk application methods (fumigation and aerial).
Requires first time annual safety training and increased oversight for persons working under the direct supervision of a certified applicator. Training includes reducing take-home pesticide exposure to protect worker families.
Promotes interstate recognition of applicator licenses to reduce the administrative burden for businesses that operate in multiple states.
Provides expanded options for establishing certification programs in Indian Country that acknowledge tribal sovereignty.
Clarifies and streamlines requirements for states, tribes, and federal agencies to administer their own certification programs.
You may review the proposed new regulations by clicking here. Please review the new rules and send any comments directly to EPA with a copy to PLNA. PLNA will be reviewing the regulations and compiling its own comments to meet the November 23, 2015 comment deadline.