Green Buckeye RN EPA Seeking Comment on Disclosesure of Inert Ingredients In Pesticides
January 4, 2010, 2:48 pm
Filed under: News

Yesterday, the U.S. EPA announced that the agency will be requesting public comment on options for disclosing inert ingredients in pesticides.  In this anticipated rulemaking, EPA is seeking ideas for greater disclosure of inert ingredient identities.  EPA will accept comments on the advance notice of proposed rulemaking for 60 days after it has been published in the Federal Register.

An inert ingredient is anything added to a pesticide that does not kill or control a pest.  In some cases, they are toxic, but companies do not identify them on pesticide labels.  Nearly 4,000 inerts – including several hundred that are considered hazardous under other federal rules – are used in agricultural and residential pesticides, including formaldehyde, bisphenol A, sulfuric acid, toluene, benzene and styrene.  Such unidentified inert ingredients can cause cancer, reproductive problems or respiratory problems

EPA was first petitioned by environmental groups and state officials seeking public disclosure of the ingredients 11 years ago. In 2001, EPA denied those petitions filed by ten state attorney generals and an environmental coalition, and that decision was upheld by a federal judge in 2004.  In 2006, the Northwest Coalition and 15 state attorney generals sent new petitions to EPA, specifically seeking the listing of 374 chemicals that are considered hazardous under other environmental laws, including the Clean Air Act.  In September, EPA said that a chemical-by-chemical approach was not practical and “would potentially result in numerous challenges regarding individual products.”  Instead, the agency said, it would consider requiring disclosure of all inert ingredients regardless of hazard or only those that are considered potentially hazardous.  Some of the requirements may be voluntary.

See EPA’s announcement at:


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