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Proposed Rule

RIN 2070-AB78

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Proposed rule.

SUMMARY:

EPA is proposing to revoke 67 meat, milk, poultry, and egg tolerances for residues of the organophosphate pesticides fenthion, methidathion, naled, phorate, and profenofos. EPA determined that there are no reasonable expectations of finite residues in or on meat, milk, poultry, or eggs for the aforementioned organophosphate pesticides and announced on August 2, 1999, that those tolerances were reassessed under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA). The regulatory actions proposed in this document are part of the Agency's reregistration program under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), and the tolerance reassessment requirements of the FFDCA. By law, EPA is required to Start Printed Page 17237reassess 66% of the tolerances in existence on August 2, 1996, by August 2002, or about 6,400 tolerances. Since those 67 tolerances were previously reassessed, those reassessments were counted at that time. Consequently, no reassessments are counted here toward the August 2002 review deadline of FFDCA section 408(q), as amended by the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) of 1996.

DATES:

Comments, identified by docket control number OPP-300985, must be received on or before May 30, 2000.

ADDRESSES:

Comments may be submitted by mail, electronically, or in person. Please follow the detailed instructions for each method as provided in Unit I. of SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, it is imperative that you identify docket control number OPP-300985 in the subject line on the first page of your response.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

By mail: Dan Helfgott, Special Review and Reregistration Division (7508C), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Bldg., 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: (703) 308-8054; fax number: (703) 308-8041; e-mail address: helfgott.daniel@epa.gov.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. General Information

A. Does This Action Apply to Me?

You may be potentially affected by this action if you are an agricultural producer, food manufacturer or pesticide manufacturer. Potentially affected categories and entities may include, but are not limited to:

CategoriesNAICS codesExamples of potentially affected entities
Industry111Crop production
112Animal production
311Food manufacturing
32532Pesticide manufacturing

This listing is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide for readers regarding entities likely to be affected by this action. Other types of entities not listed in this table could also be affected. The North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) codes are provided to assist you and others in determining whether or not this action might apply to certain entities. If you have questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

B. How Can I Get Additional Information, Including Copies of This Document and Other Related Documents?

1. Electronically. You may obtain electronic copies of this document, and certain other related documents that might be available electronically, from the EPA Internet Home Page at http://www.epa.gov/​. To access this document, on the Home Page select “Laws and Regulations” and then look up the entry for this document under the “Federal Register—Environmental Documents.” You can also go directly to the Federal Register listings at http://www.epa.gov/​fedrgstr/​.

2. In person. The Agency has established an official record for this action under docket control number OPP-300985. The official record consists of the documents specifically referenced in this action, any public comments received during an applicable comment period, and other information related to this action, including any information claimed as Confidential Business Information (CBI). This official record includes the documents that are physically located in the docket, as well as the documents that are referenced in those documents. The public version of the official record does not include any information claimed as CBI. The public version of the official record, which includes printed, paper versions of any electronic comments submitted during an applicable comment period, is available for inspection in the Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Rm. 119, Crystal Mall #2, 1921 Jefferson Davis Hwy., Arlington, VA, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The PIRIB telephone number is (703) 305-5805.

C. How and to Whom Do I Submit Comments?

You may submit comments through the mail, in person, or electronically. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, it is imperative that you identify docket control number OPP-300985 in the subject line on the first page of your response.

1. By mail. Submit your comments to: Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Information Resources and Services Division (7502C), Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Bldg., 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460.

2. In person or by courier. Deliver your comments to: Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Information Resources and Services Division (7502C), Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), Environmental Protection Agency, Rm. 119, Crystal Mall #2, 1921 Jefferson Davis Hwy., Arlington, VA. The PIRIB is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The PIRIB telephone number is (703) 305-5805.

3. Electronically. You may submit your comments electronically by e-mail to: “opp-docket@epa.gov,” or you can submit a computer disk as described above. Do not submit any information electronically that you consider to be CBI. Avoid the use of special characters and any form of encryption. Electronic submissions will be accepted in WordPerfect 6.1/8.0 or ASCII file format. All comments in electronic form must be identified by docket control number OPP-300985. Electronic comments may also be filed online at many Federal Depository Libraries.

D. How Should I Handle CBI That I Want to Submit to the Agency?

Do not submit any information electronically that you consider to be CBI. You may claim information that you submit to EPA in response to this document as CBI by marking any part or all of that information as CBI. Information so marked will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 CFR part 2. In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes any information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public version of the official record. Information not marked confidential will be included in the public version of the official record without prior notice. If you have any questions about CBI or the procedures for claiming CBI, please consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

E. What Should I Consider as I Prepare My Comments for EPA?

You may find the following suggestions helpful for preparing your comments:

1. Explain your views as clearly as possible.

2. Describe any assumptions that you used.

3. Provide copies of any technical information and/or data you used that support your views. Start Printed Page 17238

4. If you estimate potential burden or costs, explain how you arrived at the estimate that you provide.

5. Provide specific examples to illustrate your concerns.

6. Offer alternative ways to improve the proposed rule or collection activity.

7. Make sure to submit your comments by the deadline in this document.

8. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, be sure to identify the docket control number assigned to this action in the subject line on the first page of your response. You may also provide the name, date, and Federal Register citation.

II. Background

A. What Action Is the Agency Taking?

EPA is proposing to revoke specific meat, milk, poultry and egg tolerances for residues of fenthion, methidathion, naled, phorate, and profenofos because the Agency has concluded that there is no reasonable expectation of finite residues in or on the commodities associated with those tolerances.

The determinations to revoke the tolerances listed in this document were made based on feeding studies submitted since the time that the tolerances were originally established. These feeding studies used exaggerated amounts of the compound (10x the dietary burden) and did not show measurable residues of the pesticides tested. Because there is no reasonable expectation of finite residues, these 67 tolerances are not required under the FFDCA and can be revoked. The Agency originally made the determination that there is no reasonable expectation of finite residues on fenthion, methidathion, naled, phorate, or profenophos for the 67 commodities listed below on July 11, 1999. EPA published a notice in the Federal Register on August 2, 1999 (64 FR 41933) (FRL-6097-3) that these 67 tolerances were considered reassessed and had already been counted toward meeting the tolerance reassessment requirements listed in FFDCA section 408(q).

1. Fenthion. EPA is proposing to revoke the tolerances in 40 CFR 180.214 for residues of fenthion in or on poultry, fat; poultry, meat byproducts (mbyp); and poultry, meat. In 40 CFR 180.214, EPA is also proposing to remove the “N” designation from all entries to conform to current Agency administrative practice ( “N” designation means negligible residues).

2. Methidathion. EPA is proposing to revoke the tolerances in 40 CFR 180.298 for residues of methidathion in or on cattle, fat; cattle, mbyp; cattle, meat; goats, fat; goats, mbyp; goats, meat; hogs, fat; hogs, mbyp; hogs, meat; horses, fat; horses, mbyp; horses, meat; poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; poultry, meat; sheep, fat; sheep, mbyp; sheep, meat; milk; and eggs. In 40 CFR 180.298, EPA is also proposing to remove the “N” designation from all entries to conform to current Agency administrative practice.

3. Naled. EPA is proposing to revoke the tolerances in 40 CFR 180.215 for residues of naled in or on cattle, fat; cattle, mbyp; cattle, meat; goats, fat; goats, mbyp; goats, meat; hogs, fat; hogs, mbyp; hogs, meat; horses, fat; horses, mbyp; horses, meat; poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; poultry, meat; sheep, fat; sheep, mbyp; sheep, meat; milk; and eggs.

4. Phorate. EPA is proposing to revoke the tolerances in 40 CFR 180.206 for residues of phorate in or on cattle, fat; cattle, mbyp; cattle, meat; goats, fat; goats, mbyp; goats, meat; hogs, fat; hogs, mbyp; hogs, meat; horses, fat; horses, mbyp; horses, meat; poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; poultry, meat; sheep, fat; sheep, mbyp; sheep, meat; milk; and eggs.

5. Profenofos. EPA is proposing to revoke the tolerances in 40 CFR 180.404 for residues of profenofos in or on poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; poultry, meat; and eggs.

B. What Is the Agency's Authority for Taking This Action?

A “tolerance” represents the maximum level for residues of pesticide chemicals legally allowed in or on raw agricultural commodities and processed foods. Section 408 of FFDCA, 21 U.S.C. 301 et seq., as amended by the FQPA of 1996, Public Law 104-170, authorizes the establishment of tolerances, exemptions from tolerance requirements, modifications in tolerances, and revocation of tolerances for residues of pesticide chemicals in or on raw agricultural commodities and processed foods (21 U.S.C. 346(a)). Without a tolerance or exemption, food containing pesticide residues is considered to be unsafe and therefore “adulterated” under section 402(a) of the FFDCA. If food containing pesticide residues is considered to be “adulterated,” you may not distribute the product in interstate commerce (21 U.S.C. 331(a) and 342(a)). For a food-use pesticide to be sold and distributed, the pesticide must be registered under FIFRA (7 U.S.C. et seq.) Food-use pesticides not registered in the United States have tolerances for residues of pesticides in or on commodities imported into the United States.

When EPA establishes tolerances for pesticide residues in or on raw agricultural commodities, consideration must be given to the possible residues of those chemicals in meat, milk, poultry, and/or eggs produced by animals that are fed agricultural products (for example, grain or hay) containing pesticide residues (40 CFR 180.6). When considering this possibility, EPA can conclude that:

1. Finite residues will exist in meat, milk, poultry and/or eggs.

2. There is a reasonable expectation that finite residues will exist.

3. There is a reasonable expectation that finite residues will not exist. If there is no reasonable expectation of finite pesticide residues in or on meat, milk, poultry, or eggs, tolerances do not need to be established for these commodities (40 CFR 180.6(b) and 40 CFR 180.6(c)).

EPA has evaluated the meat, milk, poultry, and egg tolerances listed in the table in this proposed rule and has concluded that there is no reasonable expectation of finite residues of the listed organophosphate pesticides in or on those commodities.

C. When Do These Actions Become Effective?

EPA is proposing that these actions become effective 90 days following publication of a final rule in the Federal Register. EPA has proposed delaying the effectiveness of these revocations for 90 days following the publication of a final rule to ensure that all affected parties receive notice of EPA's actions. If you have comments regarding the effective date, please submit comments as described under the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

D. What Is the Contribution to Tolerance Reassessment?

By law, EPA is required to reassess 66% or about 6,400 of the tolerances in existence on August 2, 1996, by August 2002. EPA is also required to assess the remaining tolerances by August 2006. As of February 1, 2000, EPA has reassessed 3,430 tolerances. While this document proposes to revoke 67 tolerances, those 67 tolerances have been previously counted as reassessed and none are counted here toward the August 2002 review deadline of FFDCA section 408(q), as amended by FQPA in 1996.

III. Are the Proposed Actions Consistent With International Obligations?

The tolerance revocations in this proposal are not discriminatory. EPA has evaluated the meat, milk, poultry, Start Printed Page 17239and egg tolerances listed in the table in the regulatory text and has concluded that there is no reasonable expectation of finite residues of the listed organophosphate pesticides in or on those commodities, whether domestic or imported.

EPA is working to ensure that the U.S. tolerance reassessment program under FQPA does not disrupt international trade. EPA considers Codex Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) in setting U.S. tolerances and in reassessing them. MRLs are established by the Codex Committee on Pesticide Residues, a committee within the Codex Alimentarius Commission, an international organization formed to promote the coordination of international food standards. It is EPA's policy to harmonize U.S. tolerances with Codex MRLs to the extent possible, provided that the MRLs achieve the level of protection required under FFDCA. EPA's effort to harmonize with Codex MRLs is summarized in the tolerance reassessment section of individual Reregistration Eligibility Decision documents.

IV. How Do the Regulatory Assessments Requirements Apply to This Action?

In this document, EPA is proposing to revoke specific meat, milk, poultry, and egg tolerances established under FFDCA section 408. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has exempted this type of action, i.e., a tolerance revocation for which extraordinary circumstances do not exist, from review under Executive Order 12866, entitled Regulatory Planning and Review (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993). This action does not contain any information collections subject to OMB approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., or impose any enforceable duty or contain any unfunded mandate as described under Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) (Public Law 104-4). Nor does it require any prior consultation as specified by Executive Order 13084, entitled Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments (63 FR 27655, May 19, 1998); special considerations as required by Executive Order 12898, entitled Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994); or require OMB review or any Agency action under Executive Order 13045, entitled Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997). This action does not involve any technical standards that would require Agency consideration of voluntary consensus standards pursuant to section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (NTTAA), Public Law 104-113, section 12(d) (15 U.S.C. 272 note). Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), the Agency previously assessed whether revocations of tolerances might significantly impact a substantial number of small entities and concluded that, as a general matter, these actions do not impose a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The factual basis and the Agency's certification under section 605(b) for tolerance revocations published on December 17, 1997 (62 FR 66020), and was provided to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration. Since no extraordinary circumstances exist as to the present revocation that would change EPA's previous analysis, the Agency is able to reference the general certification. Any comments about the Agency's determination should be submitted to EPA along with comments on the proposal, and will be addressed prior to issuing a final rule.

In addition, the Agency has determined that this action will not have a substantial direct effect on States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government, as specified in Executive Order 13132, entitled Federalism (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999). Executive Order 13132 requires EPA to develop an accountable process to ensure “meaningful and timely input by State and local officials in the development of regulatory policies that have federalism implications.” “Policies that have federalism implications” is defined in the Executive Order to include regulations that have “substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.” This rule directly regulates growers, food processors, food handlers and food retailers, not States. This action does not alter the relationships or distribution of power and responsibilities established by Congress in the preemption provisions of FFDCA section 408(n)(4).

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 180

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Dated: March 23, 2000.

Jack E. Housenger, Acting

Director, Special Review and Reregistration Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.

End Signature

Therefore, it is proposed that 40 CFR part 180 be amended as follows:

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PART 180—[AMENDED]

1. The authority citation for part 180 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 21 U.S.C. 321(q), 346a and 371.

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[Amended]

2. In § 180.206, by removing from the table in paragraph (a) the entries for cattle, fat; cattle, mbyp; cattle, meat; eggs; goats, fat; goats, mbyp; goats, meat; hogs, fat; hogs, mbyp; hogs, meat; horses, fat; horses, mbyp; horses, meat; milk (negligible residue); poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; poultry, meat; sheep, fat; sheep, mbyp; and sheep, meat.

[Amended]

3. In § 180.214, by removing the entries for poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; and poultry, meat; and by removing the “(N)” designation from the entry “milk” in the table under paragraph (a).

[Amended]

4. In § 180.215, by removing from the table in paragraph (a) the entries for cattle fat; cattle, mbyp; cattle, meat; eggs; goats, fat; goats, mbyp; goats, meat; hogs, fat; hogs, mbyp; hogs, meat; horses, fat; horses, mbyp; horses, meat; milk; poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; poultry, meat; sheep, fat; sheep, mbyp; and sheep, meat.

[Amended]

5. In § 180.298, by removing paragraph (a)(2), and redesignating paragraph (a)(1) as (a), and by removing the “(N)” designation wherever it appears from any entry in the table under paragraph (a).

[Amended]

6. In § 180.404, by removing the entries for poultry, fat; poultry, mbyp; poultry, meat; and eggs; and redesignating the existing paragraph as paragraph (a) and adding and reserving paragraphs (b), (c), and (d) to read as follows:

(b) Section 18 emergency exemptions. [Reserved]

(c) Tolerances with regional registrations. [Reserved]

(d) Indirect or inadvertent residues. [Reserved]

End Part End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 00-8001 Filed 3-30-00; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6560-50-F