WASHINGTON, D.C.-Earlier this month, Ranking Member Frank Lucas, along with six of his colleagues on the House Agriculture Committee, introduced a bill (H.R. 6087) that clarifies that the use of a pesticide consistent with its registration under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) should not be subject to a costly, redundant and unnecessary permit process under the Clean Water Act (CWA).
Since passage of the Clean Water Act in 1972, the Environmental Protection Agency has interpreted the act to exclude lawful pesticide applications regulated under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) from National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits. However, in January 2009, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned that longstanding practice in The National Cotton Council of America, et al., v. United States Environmental Protection Agency. The court ruled the EPA did not have the authority under the CWA to exempt application of pesticides. Last year, Rep. Lucas joined several of his colleagues and supported a petition to the Supreme Court to hear the case, but the petition was rejected.