Coalition Letter to Senate EPW Leadership Calling for Support of S. 340, Eliminating Duplicative NPDES Requirements

Letter

Date Sent
December 5, 2017
Sender
Multi-Industry Coalition
Recipient
Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Barasso and Ranking Member Carper
Subject
S. 340, the Sensible Environmental Protection Act of 2017
29.39 KB, PDF

Dear Senator Barroso and Senator Carper,

On behalf of the undersigned organizations, we urge your support and adoption of S. 340, the Sensible Environmental Protection Act of 2017. This bipartisan legislation, introduced by Sen. Crapo (R-ID) and Sen. McCaskill (D-MO), would foster the protection of public health, the environment and our national food supply.

For almost forty years, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and pesticide applicators, including public health agencies charged with mosquito control, operated exclusively under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). All pesticides are reviewed and regulated for use with strict instructions on the EPA approved product label. A thorough review and accounting of impacts to water quality and aquatic species is part of every EPA review. In fact, EPA has testified to the adequacy of FIFRA’s comprehensive regulatory requirements including protection of aquatic species and drinking water.

However, pesticide users are now subjected to a court created requirement that lawful applications over, or near “waters of the U.S.” obtain a Clean Water Act (CWA) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit from EPA or delegated states. Requiring these water permits for pesticide applications is redundant and provides no additional environmental benefit. S 340 clarifies that federal law does not require this redundant permit for already regulated pesticide applications.

Though the NPDES permit burden lacks any additional environmental benefit under these circumstances, it does impose costs on thousands of small application businesses and farms, as well as the municipal, county, state and federal agencies responsible for protecting natural resources and public health. Further, the permit exposes all pesticide users – regardless of permit eligibility – to the liability of CWA-based citizen law suits. In fact, for example, some applicators that once conducted mosquito abatement applications for local governments and homeowner associations – cannot afford the costs or risk of frivolous litigation that accompanies NPDES Pesticide General Permit (PGP)s and have refrained from conducting public health applications. Additionally, there currently is an ongoing lawsuit against a mosquito control district, forcing the district to spend its funds fighting in court instead of protecting public health.

In summary, requiring NPDES permits under these circumstances impacts the use of critical pesticides in protecting human health and the food supply from destructive and disease-carrying pests, in managing invasive weeds to keep open waterways and shipping lanes, to maintain rights of way for transportation and power generation, and in preventing damage to forests and recreation areas. The time and funds expended on redundant permit compliance drains public and private resources. All this for no measurable benefit to the environment.

House passage of similar legislation earlier this year (H.R. 953) shows a national commitment to advancing technology and public health. As such, we urge you to eliminate this unnecessary and duplicative regulation by moving forward in adoption of S. 340, the Sensible Environmental Protection Act of 2017.

Sincerely,
ADAPCO LLC
Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA)
Alabama Forestry Association
Alamosa, CO Mosquito Control District
American Farm Bureau Federation
American Mosquito Control Association
American Soybean Association
AmericanHort
Animas, CO Mosquito Control District
Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Foundation
Aquatic Plant Management Society
Arkansas Agricultural Aviation Association
Arkansas Forestry Association
Associated Executives of Mosquito Control, NJ
Atlantic County Office of Mosquito Control
Baker Valley Vector Control District
Barberton/Norton OH Mosquito Abatement District
Barker Valley, CA Vector Control District
Bay County Mosquito Control
Beach Mosquito Control District
Benton County, WA Mosquito Control District
Box Elder, UT Mosquito Abatement District
Butte County, CA Mosquito & Vector Control
Cache UT Mosquito Abatement District
Caddo Parish, LA Mosquito Control
California Forestry Association
California Specialty Crops Council
Camden County Mosquito Commission
Cannock County Mosquito Abatement District
Canyon County, ID Mosquito Abatement District
Cascade County, MT Weed & Mosquito Division
Central Life Sciences
Charleston County Mosquito Control
Chatham County, GA Mosquito Control
Choptank, LLC
City of Alturas
City of Baytown Texas Mosquito Control
City of Sheridan, Public Works - Parks Dept.
Colorado Agricultural Aviation Association, Inc.
Consumer Specialty Products Association
Council of Producers & Distributors of Agro technology
CropLife America
Cumberland County Mosquito Control Division
Delaware Mosquito Control Section
Elmer Gray and Associates Entomological Services
Environmental Care Association of Idaho
Essex County Mosquito Control
Flathead County, MT Mosquito Control Assoc.
Florida Farm Bureau
Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association
Forest Landowners Association
Franklin County Mosquito Control
Georgia Forestry Association
Georgia Mosquito Control Association
Glasgow Mosquito District, Glasgow, Montana
Glenn County Mosquito & Vector Control District
Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA)
Grand River Mosquito Control District
Hill County Mosquito District
Hudson Regional Health Commission
Iberia Parish Mosquito Abatement District
Idaho Mosquito and Vector Control Association
Illinois Agricultural Aviation Association
Indian River Mosquito Control District
Kansas Agricultural Aviation Association
Lake County Mosquito & Aquatic Plant Management
Lake Yale Baptist Conference Center
Levy County Mosquito Control
Louisiana Forestry Association
Louisiana Mosquito Control Association
Mason Valley Mosquito Abatement District
Mercer County Mosquito Control, NJ
Michigan Mosquito Control Association
Michigan Pest Management Association
Middlesex County Mosquito Extermination Commission
Mississippi Aerial Application Association
Montana Mosquito & Vector Control Association
Mosquito & Vector Control Association of California
National Agricultural Aviation Association
National Alliance of Forest Owners
National Alliance of Independent Crop Consultants
National Association of Landscape Professionals
National Association of State Departments of Agriculture
National Association of Wheat Growers
National Corn Growers Association
National Cotton Council
National Council of Farmer Cooperatives
National Onion Association
National Pest Management Association (NPMA)
National Potato Council
National Sorghum Producers
National Soybean Association
Nebraska Aviation Trades Association
New Hampshire Timberland Owners Association
New Hanover County Health Department, Vector Control Services
New Jersey Mosquito Control Association
North Carolina Agricultural Aviation Assoc.
North Carolina Forestry Association
North Carolina Mosquito and Vector Control
North Central Weed Science Society
North Shore Mosquito Abatement District
Northeastern Mosquito Control Association
Northeastern Weed Science Society
Northwest Mosquito and Vector Control Association
Ocean County Mosquito Extermination Commission
Ohio Mosquito and Vector Control Association
Oklahoma Agricultural Aviation Association
Orange County, Florida Mosquito Control
Oregon Forest & Industries Council
Oregon Mosquito and Vector Control Association
Oregonians for Food and Shelter
Pennsylvania Vector Control Association
Pesticide Policy Coalition
Placer Mosquito and Vector Control District
Practical Vector Control
Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment (RISE)
Sacramento-Yolo, CA MVCD
Saginaw County Mosquito Abatement Commission
Salt Lake City Mosquito Abatement District
South Carolina Aerial Applicators Association
South Salt Lake Valley Mosquito Abatement District
Southeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association
Southern Weed Science Society
Suffolk County NY Vector Control
Sutter-Yuba Mosquito & Vector Control District
CC: Members United States Senate
Taylor Tushar, Delta Vector Control District
Tennessee Forestry Association
Teton County (Wyoming) Weed & Pest District
Texas Forestry Association
Town of Callahan
Turlock Mosquito Abatement District
Tuscola County Mosquito Abatement
U.S. Apple Association
Uinta County Mosquito Control
United Fresh Produce Association
Unmanned Ingenuity LLC
USA Rice
Utah County Mosquito Abatement
Utah Mosquito Abatement Association
Virginia Forestry Association
Virginia Pest Management Association
Volusia County Mosquito Control
Warren County Mosquito Extermination Commission
Washington Forest Protection Association
Washington State Potato Commission
Weber UT Mosquito Abatement District
Weed Science Society of America
West Side Mosquito & Vector Control District
West Valley Mosquito and Vector Control District
Western Growers
Western Society of Weed Science