Jim Jones, the new head of EPA's Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, has stated that one of his three priority goals is to assess/streamline the agency’s procedure to comply with an Endangered Species Act (ESA) requirement to consult with the relevant agencies on the impact of pesticide registrations to listed species.
In recent years, environmentalists have launched a series of lawsuits to force EPA to complete and implement the ESA consultation process for pesticide uses. One such case, the Megasuit, seeks to force EPA to consult on the effects of more than 300 pesticides on more than 200 species.
Jones said that court-ordered deadlines for species consultations could overrun the rest of his office’s work.
A key component in addressing that issue will be an upcoming National Academy of Sciences' report that will review the state of science behind the consultations and attempt to resolve scientific issues between how the services and EPA conduct risk assessments.