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fomesafen (Reflex) Specific Exemption Request 2/97

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Division of Solid & Hazardous Materials
50 Wolf Road, Albany, New York  12233-7250
Phone 518457-6934  
FAX 518457-0629

Mr. Rob Forrest
Section Chief (H7505W)
Emergency Response and Minor Use Section
Registration Support Branch
United States Environmental Protection Agency
401 M. Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C.  20460

Dear Mr. Forrest:

Re:  Specific Exemption Request for Use of Fomesafen (Reflex 2LC) for
     Postemergence Control of Broadleaf Weeds in Snap and Dry Beans in 1997

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, as the State lead
agency for pesticide matters, hereby requests approval of the enclosed application 
under Section 18 of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, as 
amended.  The enclosed application includes the information required in 40 CFR Part 
166.20.

This request is for one application of Reflex 2LC (EPA Reg. No. 10182-83) to be
applied to approximately 29,800 acres of snap and dry beans in New York State during
the 1997 growing season.  This year, a lower use rate is requested specifically for 
control of velvetleaf, hairy nightshade, and common ragweed when in the cotyledon to 
2-true leaf stage of growth (Appendix B).

This is the fifth year that Reflex is being requested for use in the major snap and
dry bean production areas of New York State to control broadleaf weeds.  Presently, 
there are still no other effective, economical alternative control measures 
available to bean producers.

Historically, snap and dry bean growers in New York State have relied upon the
preplant-incorporated herbicides for initial weed control, supplemented with either
Premerge or Arniben after planting.  The loss of Premerge, followed by the 
withdrawal of Amiben, has meant that populations of broadleaf weeds have burgeoned 
to almost epidemic proportions after an extended period of poor control.  The 
currently registered herbicides are either not effective in controlling broadleaf 
weeds, offer only a short period of control and/or only partial control, or have 
timing and environmental conditions so critical that successful use is limited.

The effects of the broadleaf weed infestations on economic returns have been
significant.  For example, economic losses in snap beans from decreased harvester
efficiency, field abandonment, and load rejection could potentially reach $249,900,
$141,733, and $10,000 respectively.  Economic losses in dry beans arise 
predominantly from decreased quality (increased staining and cleaning) and 
mechanical losses during harvest operations, resulting in annual losses of $186,400 
and $1,268,000, respectively.  Without a successful control measure, the situation 
is expected to become significantly worse.

A single application of Reflex will improve the net economic returns of both snap
and dry bean growers.  Because Reflex can be used postemergence over an extended
period of time, it can be used on an as-needed basis, thereby reducing residual 
herbicide use by approximately 25%.  Research conducted by researchers at Cornell 
University consistently demonstrates that Reflex provides superior control of 
numerous broadleaf weeds at relatively low doses.  In addition, Reflex has proven 
efficacious in controlling troublesome weeds in New York State when approved for 
emergency use in previous growing seasons (Appendix D).

Zeneca Ag Products, manufacturer of Reflex 2LC, has been informed and is
supportive of this request.  The petition requesting the establishment of a 
tolerance for fomesafen in snap beans was submitted to the USEPA on June 19, 1996.  
A time-limited tolerance of 0.05 ppm was approved by the USEPA in March, 1996.  The 
tolerance expiration date is December 31, 1998. Residue trials for dry beans were 
completed and residue analyses from these trials are in progress. IR-4 is in support 
of the labeling process which will be initiated as soon as the final package has 
been prepared.

The requested report summarizing the results of the 1996 program is included with
this application (Appendix I).

The expected use season will be from June 1 to August 15, 1997.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,


Norman H. Nosenchuck, P.E.
Director
Division of Solid & Hazardous Materials

Enclosure
cc:  w/enc. -   F. Kozak, EPA Region II
cc:  w/o enc. - W. Smith, Cornell University, PMEP
                R. Mungari, NYS Dept. of Ag & Mkts