Syngenta Response to EPA’s report on Benefits of Neonicotinoid Seed Treatments to Soybean Production Talking Points
EPA announced it will open a comment period on the agency’s initial assessment of the benefits of neonicotinoid seed treatment for insect control in soybeans. We believe EPA’s initial assessment (see below) will be complete and accurate once it considers all necessary data. The agency’s public comment period will allow the opportunity to add information to fill in gaps in understanding.
We look forward to providing additional information to ensure EPA has an in-depth and accurate picture of the soybean landscape related to neonicotinoid seed treatments, such as:
• Protecting soybean seeds from early-season insect damage and providing a favorable impact on cost and yield.
October 16, 2014 Washington --- Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released an analysis of the benefits of neonicotinoid seed treatments for insect control in soybeans. Neonicotinoid pesticides are a class of insecticides widely used on U.S. crops that EPA is reviewing with particular emphasis for their impact on pollinators. The analysis concluded that there is little or no increase in soybean yields using most neonicotinoid seed treatments when compared to using no pest control at all. A Federal Register notice inviting the public to comment on the analysis will publish in the near future.
“We have made the review of neonicotinoid pesticides a high priority,” said Jim Jones, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. “In our analysis of the economic benefits of this use we concluded that, on a national scale, U.S. soybean farmers see little or no benefit from neonicotinoid seed treatments.”
During the review of the neonicotinoids, EPA found that many scientific publications claim that treating soybean seeds has little value. Part of our assessment examined the effectiveness of these seed treatments for pest control and estimated the impacts on crop yields and quality, as well as financial losses and gains. The law requires EPA to consider the benefits of using pesticides as well as the risks.
The analysis concluded that:
This analysis is an important part of the science EPA will use to move forward with the assessment of the risks and benefits under registration review for the neonicotinoid pesticides. Registration review --- the periodic re-evaluation of pesticides to determine if they continue to meet the safety standard --- can result in EPA discontinuing certain uses, placing limits on the pesticide registration, and requiring other label changes.
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