New pesticide regulations that have gone into effect in California may have been pushed through illegally, a result of overeager nannies who wanted to get the rules in place without the proper procedure because the public outcry would have defeated them.
Strawberry farmer Juana Vasquez has filed a lawsuit against the California Department of Pesticide Regulation over rules that went into effect regulating 1,3-Dichloropropene, a pesticide commonly used on California farms.
The lawsuit alleges that the DPR didn’t follow proper procedures when it came to developing the rules, and ignored the guidance of the federal government when it came to regulating the pesticide.
The pesticide, sold under the name Telone, is considered by the federal government to be a “likely carcinogen,” but safe as long as it is limited in its volume and concentration.
The lawsuit alleges that the DPR “abused its discretion, acted in excess of its statutory power and authority, and failed to proceed in the manner required by law.”
As the Ventura County Star reported,
“Pesticide regulators failed to allow for public scrutiny or heed the advice of the agency before adopting rules for the pesticide 1,3-Dichloropropene, the suit alleges. …California has been notoriously overcautious when it comes to the science and regulation of chemicals. The state lists certain chemicals in common household items like RoundUp as carcinogens and has been sued for taking a heavy-handed approach to labeling.
The plaintiffs are seeking a court order requiring the agency to develop regulations based on the more conservative conclusions of the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.”
Vasquez’s lawsuit was joined by activist groups Californians for Pesticide Reform and the Pesticide Action Network. The rules went into effect in January.