The Worker Protection Standard (“WPS”) is a federal regulation issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) in 1992 under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act to protect farmworkers from the effects of exposure to pesticides. The WPS requires agricultural employers to take certain protective measures to reduce the risk of illness or injury to workers and handlers resulting from exposures to pesticides used to produce agricultural plants on agricultural establishments (i.e., farms, forests, nurseries and enclosed space production facilities such as greenhouses).Read More
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The headlines about dicamba and specifically, the new dicamba products, might have you scratching your head. How can states regulate pesticides? What is the federal government’s role in pesticide regulation? Where can I find my state’s regulation of these products? The hodgepodge of state laws that regulate the new dicamba products, XtendiMax with VaporGrip Technology, FeXapan herbicide Plus VaporGrip Technology, and Engenia, can be difficult to follow.Read More
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In 2015, the Montgomery County Council passed a bill prohibiting the use of certain pesticides on private and county-owned properties. The bill limited the use of pesticides registered with the Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA), only allowing pesticides listed by the county for non-essential cosmetic purposes. The bill exempts agricultural applications. The court found that Maryland state law preempted the bill, but the county may appeal this decision.Read More
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Damage caused by pesticide drift has been in the news a lot over the past couple of years. With Monsanto releasing new varieties resistant to a new less volatile formula of dicamba, many states have seen an increase in reports of drift damages. At the winter agronomy meetings, I discussed what type of liability an applicator might face if a neighbor complained of drift damage, but what should you do if you suspect drift damage in your fields. An injured producer should contact the state department of agriculture to investigate, begin developing evidence of the damage, and consider working with the applicator/neighbor to settle the damage or consider hiring an attorney to pursue a lawsuit in court. Understanding how to handle drift damage can help the injured producer understand his/her rights in this situation.Read More