Chlorpyrifos Use Will Be Revisited by the Biden Administration

The Once Almost Banned Pesticide Remained on the Market During the Trump Administration

Chlorpyrifos is a controversial but common pesticide that is used on many different crops, including corn, apples and vegetables. It is among the most toxic pesticides utilized by the farming industry and has been implicated in the development of autism. A previous SafeMinds Shares article from last spring detailed Maryland’s legislative efforts to phase out the use of chlorpyrifos. California, Oregon, New Jersey and Connecticut have already banned this toxic pesticide and most indoor uses of chlorpyrifos were halted back in 2001. In fact, Obama-era officials unsuccessfully tried to ban the substance in 2016. With the advent of the Trump administration in 2017, chlorpyrifos was rescued from being taken off of the market. However, the fate of this contentious substance may be coming to an end. Through a pledge made last month by President Biden to closely examine policies “that were harmful to public health, damaging to the environment, unsupported by the best available science or otherwise not in the national interest” and through an executive order, the President promised to re-examine the use of chlorpyrifos. Additionally, the incoming administration will also re-evaluate a Trump administration decision to shrink buffer zones around fields when pesticides are applied. 

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