cyanazine (Bladex) Terms and Conditions of Registration 1/99
[Federal Register: January 22, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 14)]
>From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
Cyanazine; Notice of Amendment to Terms and Conditions of
Registration, Response to Comment
AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
SUMMARY: This Notice announces the Agency's decision to amend the terms
and conditions of the cyanazine registrations held by DuPont
Agricultural Products ("DuPont") and Griffin Corporation
("Griffin"). The registrations are currently being phased out
according to the terms and conditions proposed by DuPont and
subsequently agreed to by Griffin and accepted by EPA. These terms and
conditions were the basis for concluding the Special Review of cyanazine. This
notice announces EPA's decision to grant the registrants' request to further
amend the terms and conditions of their cyanazine registrations and voluntary
cancellation orders to allow a maximum use rate of 3.0 lb/acre in 1999,
instead of 1.0 lb/acre, as currently required. EPA's decision to grant
this request is subject to 40 CFR 154.35 because the agreement to phase
out cyanazine usage and ultimately cancel the registrations was the
basis for the Agency's conclusion of the Special Review. EPA is
granting this request because it is a proper response to special
weather conditions, it will not disturb the original cancellation order
that phases out cyanazine use by 2002 since there will be no extension
of the time for phasing out use, and, because the Agency finds that the
balance between risks and benefits of cyanazine will continue to
justify allowing use under the terms of the phase-out.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: By mail: Loan Phan, Office of
Pesticide Programs (7508C), Environmental Protection Agency, 401 M St.,
SW., Washington, DC 20460. Office location for commercial courier
delivery, telephone number, and e-mail address: Rm. 679, Crystal Mall
1B2, 1921 Jefferson Davis Hwy., Arlington, VA, (703) 308-8008,
A. Regulatory Background
Cyanazine is the common name for [2-((4-chloro-6-(ethylamino)-s-
triazine-2-yl)amino)-2-methylpropionitrile], an herbicide.
A Special Review of cyanazine was initiated in November 1994 (58 FR
60412, November 23, 1994) (FRL-4919-5), based on cancer risk concerns
to humans. In August 1995, DuPont voluntarily proposed to amend its
cyanazine registrations to effectively phase out all use of cyanazine
products by December 31, 2002. DuPont modified the labels of cyanazine
formulated end use products released for shipment by the registrant
after July 25, 1996, to specify the maximum application rates during
the phase out and to inform the public of the existing stocks
provisions. After EPA initiated the Special Review of cyanazine,
Griffin filed an application to register certain cyanazine pesticide
products and subsequently agreed to the same terms and conditions of
registration that were proposed by DuPont. In August, 1995, EPA
accepted DuPont's proposal, and Griffin's agreement, to amend their
cyanazine registrations, including voluntary cancellation effective
December 31, 1999. EPA subsequently concluded the Special Review of
cyanazine (61 FR 39023, July 25, 1996) (FRL-5385-7) because all
registrations were being phased out and ultimately canceled, and
because EPA determined that the risks from additional use during the
phase-out period did not outweigh the benefits of use during that time.
On September 23, 1998, DuPont requested a change to the terms and
conditions of its cyanazine registration (as established in the
cancellation order, 61 FR 39023), in order to allow use at a rate of
3.0 lbs/acre during the 1999 growing season. Subsequently, Griffin
submitted the same request.
On October 21, 1998, EPA issued a Notice of Receipt of the
registrants' requests (63 FR 56178, October 21, 1998) (FRL-6040-2), and
also announced the Agency's proposed decision to grant the registrants'
request. The Agency explained that it believes that DuPont's request
for a change in use rate for the 1999 growing season will not disturb
the Agency's conclusion in 61 FR 39023 that risks associated with the
voluntary phase out and cancellation are outweighed by its benefits.
The Notice also solicited public comment pursuant to 40 CFR 154.35 on
its proposed decision.
II. Response to Public Comments
EPA received one set of comments in response to its Notice of
Receipt of the registrants' request to amend the terms and conditions
of the cyanazine registrations (63 FR 56178), from the Vermont
Department of Agriculture ("Vermont").
A. Impact of Agency's Decision on Applicator Training
1. Comment. "The publication and distribution of training
materials and use recommendations for the 1999 growing season has
already begun. The Agency should not permit the distribution of
labeling with directions for use that contradicts material provided to
commercial applicators and growers through our cooperative training
program with the University Extension System and the Natural Resource
2. Response. EPA recognizes the importance of accurate training and
enforcement materials, and is willing to aid any state that needs
further clarification on the terms and conditions of this amendment, as
well as in dispersing information about the amended terms. Further, the
supplemental labels clearly identify the change in the allowable use
rate for only the 1999 growing season, and could be added to the
training package. If training materials have already been distributed,
it may be possible to distribute the supplemental labels as an addendum
or through some other communications package. However, because this
amendment is increasing, rather than decreasing, the maximum allowable
use rate, there will be no additional risk if any growers, such as
those in Vermont, do not receive the supplemental labels and continue
to use the products at the original 1999 rate of 1 pound per acre.
B. Impact of Agency's Decision on Enforcement Program
Comment. "The determination of appropriate labeled use by the
Enforcement Program field staff is complicated by two factors. One is
the distinction between original and amended labels as far as rate per
acre directions. The second is between labeled rates for sweet corn
versus field corn. Having these two discrepancies on labeled products
in the field at the same time will make the determination of use in
accordance with label directions impossible on a practical basis for
the enforcement program."
Response. EPA acknowledges that the supplemental labels may impose
difficulties on Vermont's and other states' enforcement efforts. States
may choose to address this in various ways, including a restriction
under state law against use of cyanazine products labeled with the 3.0
lbs./acre application rate.
However, EPA believes it is likely that not all growers will choose
to use the product at the maximum allowable rate and, if they do, they
must have in their possession the supplemental label that allows the
higher rate. Enforcement officials may require the grower who is found
applying cyanazine at the 3.0 lbs/acre rate to produce the supplemental
EPA routinely requires re-labeling with supplemental labels as part
of its risk management practices and generally, enforcement officials
have been able to effectively implement these supplemental labels.
However, the Agency is willing to aid any state that needs further
clarification of this amendment and is willing to work with enforcement
personnel if specific enforcement issues arise.
As for Vermont's second concern, the amended use rate of 3.0 lbs/
acre in 1999 applies to all crops previously registered at this use
rate on the cyanazine labels, not just sweet corn. If growers find that
applying cyanazine at the higher rate is effective on their crops, then they
may use cyanazine at that rate.
C. Impact of Agency's Decision on Applicator Exposure
1. Comment. Vermont also asserts that, because "...the original
cancellation decision was based in part on concern for applicator
exposure,...postponing reductions in the use rate sends a contradictory
message that the concern for applicator health and safety may not have
been such an important issue in the first place. [Vermont] is fully
aware of the argument that cumulative exposure over the entire phase-
out period would not be changed. That justification does not serve the
objective of encouraging pesticide applicators to change their
pesticide use behaviors and crop management practices on a day-to-day
2. Response. EPA remains concerned for applicator health and
safety. The phase-out required that closed cab application equipment be
used by all cyanazine mixer/loaders and applicators beginning in 1998
(61 FR 39023). This requirement remains unchanged, and demonstrates the
Agency's commitment to reducing exposure to workers during the phase-
out period. Both DuPont and Griffin have ceased production of
cyanazine. Therefore, although the allowable maximum application rate
will be three times what it would have been under the original terms of
the phase-out, no more cyanazine than what was originally anticipated
to be applied will actually be applied between 1998 and 2002.
The cyanazine phase-out was intended to reduce exposure to
cyanazine and to eliminate cyanazine use by 2002. It was not
specifically intended to encourage pesticide applicators to change
their pesticide use behaviors and crop management practices on a day-
to-day basis. However, this is a valid objective that the State of
Vermont can pursue under state law if it chooses.
D. Existing Stocks; Atypical Weather Patterns
1. Comment. Although Vermont understands the concerns regarding the
level of existing stocks remaining at the end of the cancellation
period, it points out that "managing the inventory of cyanazine is not
the Agency's responsibility. The issue of existing stocks would be a
reasonable consideration if the Agency had any indemnity liability
under FIFRA Section 15. As that is not the case with cyanazine, the
Agency should not concern itself with the question of existing
2. Response. The Agency disagrees with Vermont that EPA should not
concern itself with the question of existing stocks. Existing stocks of
pesticides can pose risks which may not be adequately mitigated by
hazardous waste regulatory provisions. Hence, the Agency believes that
it is proper to consider existing stock concerns when implementing
cancellation orders, especially so when the overall risk-benefit
balance will not be disturbed.
3. Comment. Citing that the amended terms were requested in
response to atypical weather patterns during the 1998 growing season
(63 FR 56178), Vermont comments that, "managing environmental policy
based on the weather is also not the Agency's mandate or
responsibility. The weather is far too variable a factor to serve as a
valid criteria for setting national environmental policy ..."
4. Response. Weather patterns often have significant effects on
agriculture and pest control situations which form the basis for
national pesticide regulatory policy. The atypical weather patterns of
the 1998 growing season are only one factor in EPA's evaluation of the
registrants' requested amendment. EPA also takes into consideration the
concerns of growers, as well as registrants and applicators, when
making decisions. In this case, the Agency received calls from sweet
corn growers requesting permission to use cyanazine at the higher rate
of 3.0 lbs/acre until the end of the phase-out period and information
from the registrants noting that less cyanazine was used than
originally anticipated. EPA balanced the growers' and registrants'
concerns with the risks posed by allowing the 3.0 lbs/acre use rate to
stay in place for one more growing season, and concluded that the
overall risk will not be disturbed.
1. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. "Notice of Receipt of
Request to Amend the Terms and Conditions of Cyanazine Registrations."
Federal Register Notice (63 FR 56178). October 21, 1998.
2. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. "Notice of Preliminary
Determination to Terminate Special Review; Notice of Receipt of
Requests for Voluntary Cancellation." Federal Register Notice (61 FR
8185). March 1, 1996.
3. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. "Cyanazine; Notice of
Final Determination to Terminate Special Review of Cyanazine; Notice of
Voluntary Cancellation and Cancellation Order of Cyanazine Product
Registrations." Federal Register Notice (61 FR 39023). July 25, 1996.
4. Communications between DuPont Agricultural Products and USEPA.
Confidential Business Information.
5. Communications between Griffin Corporation and USEPA.
Confidential Business Information.
List of Subjects
Dated: January 15, 1999.
Jack E. Housenger,
Acting Director, Special Review and Reregistration Division, Office of
[FR Doc. 99-1476 Filed 1-21-99; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-F