Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
This regulation establishes an amendment to an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance for residues of the biochemical hydrogen peroxide in or on all post-harvest agricultural food commodities when applied/used at the rate of ≤ 1% hydrogen peroxide per application. Biosafe Systems, Inc. submitted a petition to EPA under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA), as amended by the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) of 1996, requesting an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance. This Start Printed Page 9215regulation eliminates the need to establish a maximum permissible level for residues of hydrogen peroxide.
This regulation is effective February 28, 2002. Objections and requests for hearings, identified by docket control number OPP-301217, must be received by EPA, on or before April 29, 2002.
Written objections and hearing requests may be submitted by mail, electronically, or in person. Please follow the detailed instructions for each method as provided in Unit IX. of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, your objections and hearing requests must identify docket control number OPP-301217 in the subject line on the first page of your response.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
By mail: Diana Hudson, c/o Product Manager (PM) 90, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division (7511C), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: (703) 308-8713; and e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
I. General Information
A. Does this Action Apply to Me?
You may be 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:
|Categories||NAICS Codes||Examples of Potentially Affected Entities|
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 the table could also be affected. The North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) codes have been 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,” “Regulations and Proposed Rules,” 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/. A frequently updated electronic version of 40 CFR part 180 is available at http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/cfrhtml_00/Title_40/40cfr180_00.html, a beta site currently under development.
2. In person. The Agency has established an official record for this action under docket control number OPP-301217. The official record consists of the documents specifically referenced in this action, 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.
II. Background and Statutory Findings
In the Federal Register of November 1, 2001 (66 FR 55175) (FRL-6805-7), EPA issued a notice pursuant to section 408 of the FFDCA, 21 U.S.C. 346a(e), as amended by the FQPA (Public Law 104-170) announcing the filing of a pesticide tolerance petition by Biosafe Systems, Inc., 80 Commerce Street, Glastonbury, CT 06033. This notice included a summary of the petition prepared by the petitioner Biosafe Systems, Inc.. There were no comments received in response to the notice of filing.
The petition requested that 40 CFR 180.1197 be amended by establishing an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance for residues of hydrogen peroxide.
III. Risk Assessment
New section 408(c)(2)(A)(i) of the FFDCA allows EPA to establish an exemption from the requirement for a tolerance (the legal limit for a pesticide chemical residue in or on a food) only if EPA determines that the tolerance is “safe.” Section 408(c)(2)(A)(ii) defines “safe” to mean that “there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue, including all anticipated dietary exposures and all other exposures for which there is reliable information.” This includes exposure through drinking water and in residential settings, but does not include occupational exposure. Section 408(b)(2)(C) requires EPA to give special consideration to exposure of infants and children to the pesticide chemical residue in establishing a tolerance and to “ensure that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to infants and children from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue....” Additionally, section 408(b)(2)(D) requires that the Agency consider “available information” concerning the cumulative effects of a particular pesticide's residues and “other substances that have a common mechanism of toxicity.”
EPA performs a number of analyses to determine the risks from aggregate exposure to pesticide residues. First, EPA determines the toxicity of pesticides. Second, EPA examines exposure to the pesticide through food, drinking water, and through other exposures that occur as a result of pesticide use in residential settings.
IV. Toxicological Profile
Consistent with section 408(b)(2)(D) of FFDCA, EPA has reviewed the available scientific data and other relevant information in support of this action and considered its validity, completeness, and reliability and the relationship of this information to human risk. EPA has also considered available information concerning the variability of the sensitivities of major identifiable subgroups of consumers, including infants and children.
Hydrogen peroxide at a concentration of 27.17% has a pH of 1.05 at which concentration EPA assumes a toxicity category I for skin and eye irritation. Biosafe has submitted toxicology information from open literature for aqueous solutions containing 6% hydrogen peroxide and for aqueous solutions containing 50% hydrogen peroxide. The concentrate (27.17% Start Printed Page 9216hydrogen peroxide) will be diluted with water at the rate of 1:50 or 1:100 or 1:300 and thus, the concentration of hydrogen peroxide in the product at the time of application will range from 0.09% to 0.54%. The information from open literature demonstrated that solutions containing 6% hydrogen peroxide have an acute oral LD50≥ 5,000 milligrams/kilograms (mg/kg) in rats (toxicity category III), an acute dermal LD50≥ 10,000 mg/kg in rabbits (toxicity category IV), and an inhalation LC50 of 4 milligram/liter (mg/L) (toxicity category IV). The 6% hydrogen peroxide solutions are mild irritants to rabbit skin and cause severe irreversible corneal injury in half of the exposed rabbits (toxicity category I). Toxicology information from open literature demonstrated that solutions which contained 50% hydrogen peroxide have an acute oral LD50< 500 mg/kg in rats (toxicity category II), and an acute dermal LD50< 1,000 mg/kg in rabbits (toxicity category II). No deaths resulted after an 8-hour exposure of rats to saturated vapors of 90% hydrogen peroxide, LC50 = 4 mg/L (2,000 ppm). Solutions which contain 50% hydrogen peroxide also are extremely irritating (corrosive) to rabbit eyes (toxicity category I).
EPA has concluded that for food use at an application rate of ≤ 1% hydrogen peroxide has no apparent acute toxicity and subchronic toxicity end points exist to suggest a significant toxicity. An RfD (chronic toxicity) for hydrogen peroxide has not been estimated because of its short half-life in the environment and lack of any residues of toxicological concern. For similar reasons, an additional safety factor was not judged necessary to protect the safety of infants and children. Additionally, hydrogen peroxide is listed by the Food and Drug Administration as Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS). Additionally, hydrogen peroxide is used to treat food at a maximum level of 0.05% in milk used in cheesemaking, 0.04% in whey, 0.15% in starch and corn syrup, and 1.25% in emulsifiers containing fatty acid esters as bleaching agents (21 CFR 184.1366). As a GRAS substance, hydrogen peroxide may be used in washing or to assist in the lye peeling of fruits and vegetables (21 CFR 173.315).
V. Aggregate Exposures
In examining aggregate exposure, FFDCA section 408 directs EPA to consider available information concerning exposures from the pesticide residue in food and all other non-occupational exposures, including drinking water from ground water or surface water and exposure through pesticide use in gardens, lawns, or buildings (residential and other indoor uses).
A. Dietary Exposure
1. Food. For the proposed uses the concentrate of hydrogen peroxide will be diluted with water at the rate of 1:50, 1:100 or 1:300 corresponding to a low concentration of hydrogen peroxide in the product at the time of application (0.09-0.54%). The solution, having a low concentration of hydrogen peroxide, reacts on contact with the surface on which it is sprayed and degrades rapidly to oxygen and water. Therefore, residues in or on treated post-harvest food commodities of the algaecide/fungicide/bactericide hydrogen peroxide are expected to be negligible. Additional sources of the GRAS substance hydrogen peroxide in concentrations range from 0.04% to 1.25% in various foods as cited above (21 CFR 184.1366).
2. Drinking water exposure. At the proposed application rates, the use of hydrogen peroxide as an algaecide, fungicide, and bactericide to treat all post-harvest agricultural food commodities could result in a minimal transfer of residues to potential drinking water sources. This is due to the low application rate and the rapid chemical degradation of hydrogen peroxide into oxygen and water neither of which is of toxicological concern.
B. Other Non-Occupational Exposure
There may be minimal amounts of non-dietary exposure to hydrogen peroxide in homes through the infrequent and short topical use of the substance in treating minor skin injuries and in its use in oral mouthwashes. Exposure is expected to be minimal also because of the rapid chemical degradation of hydrogen peroxide into oxygen and water.
VI. Cumulative Effects
Because of the low use rates of hydrogen peroxide, its low toxicity and rapid degradation, EPA does not believe that there is any concern regarding the potential for cumulative effects of hydrogen peroxide with other substances due to a common mechanism of action. Because hydrogen peroxide is not known to have a common toxic metabolite with other substances, EPA has not assumed that hydrogen peroxide has a common mechanism of toxicity with other substances.
VII. Determination of Safety for U.S. Population, Infants and Children
Because hydrogen peroxide is of low toxicity, the proposed uses employ low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, and hydrogen peroxide degrades rapidly following application, EPA concludes that this exemption from the requirement of a tolerance in or on all post-harvest food commodities for hydrogen peroxide when applied at ≤ 1% will not pose a dietary risk under reasonably foreseeable circumstances. Further, the EPA Office of Water has stated that it has seen no new data that contradict the assessment previously given, which is that low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide do not typically persist in drinking water at levels that pose a health risk. Accordingly, EPA concludes that there is a reasonable certainty of no harm to consumers, including infants and children, from aggregate exposure to hydrogen peroxide.
VIII. Other Considerations
A. Endocrine Disruptors
There is no evidence to suggest that hydrogen peroxide in the proposed concentrations will adversely affect the endocrine system.
B. Analytical Method(s)
An analytical method for the detection of residues of hydrogen peroxide is not applicable to this tolerance exemption because of the low concentration of hydrogen peroxide in the product at the time of application (≤ 1%) and its rapid degradation to water and oxygen on contact with crops.
C. Codex Maximum Residue Level
There are no Codex Maximum Residue Levels established for residues on hydrogen peroxide.
IX. Objections and Hearing Requests
Under section 408(g) of the FFDCA, as amended by the FQPA, any person may file an objection to any aspect of this regulation and may also request a hearing on those objections. EPA procedural regulations which govern the submission of objections and requests for hearings appear in 40 CFR part 178. Although the procedures in those regulations require some modification to reflect the amendments made to the FFDCA by the FQPA of 1996, EPA will continue to use those procedures, with appropriate adjustments, until the necessary modifications can be made. The new section 408(g) provides essentially the same process for persons to “object” to a regulation for an exemption from the requirement of a Start Printed Page 9217tolerance issued by EPA under new section 408(d), as was provided in the old FFDCA sections 408 and 409. However, the period for filing objections is now 60 days, rather than 30 days.
A. What Do I Need to Do to File an Objection or Request a Hearing?
You must file your objection or request a hearing on this regulation in accordance with the instructions provided in this unit and in 40 CFR part 178. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, you must identify docket control number OPP-301217 in the subject line on the first page of your submission. All requests must be in writing, and must be mailed or delivered to the Hearing Clerk on or before April 29, 2002.
1. Filing the request. Your objection must specify the specific provisions in the regulation that you object to, and the grounds for the objections (40 CFR 178.25). If a hearing is requested, the objections must include a statement of the factual issues(s) on which a hearing is requested, the requestor's contentions on such issues, and a summary of any evidence relied upon by the objector (40 CFR 178.27). Information submitted in connection with an objection or hearing request may be claimed confidential 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. A copy of the information that does not contain CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public record. Information not marked confidential may be disclosed publicly by EPA without prior notice.
Mail your written request to: Office of the Hearing Clerk (1900), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460. You may also deliver your request to the Office of the Hearing Clerk in Rm. C400, Waterside Mall, 401 M St., SW., Washington, DC 20460. The Office of the Hearing Clerk is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Office of the Hearing Clerk is (202) 260-4865.
2. Tolerance fee payment. If you file an objection or request a hearing, you must also pay the fee prescribed by 40 CFR 180.33(i) or request a waiver of that fee pursuant to 40 CFR 180.33(m). You must mail the fee to: EPA Headquarters Accounting Operations Branch, Office of Pesticide Programs, P.O. Box 360277M, Pittsburgh, PA 15251. Please identify the fee submission by labeling it “Tolerance Petition Fees.”
EPA is authorized to waive any fee requirement “when in the judgement of the Administrator such a waiver or refund is equitable and not contrary to the purpose of this subsection.” For additional information regarding the waiver of these fees, you may contact James Tompkins by phone at (703) 305-5697, by e-mail at email@example.com, or by mailing a request for information to Mr. Tompkins at Registration Division (7505C), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460.
If you would like to request a waiver of the tolerance objection fees, you must mail your request for such a waiver to: James Hollins, Information Resources and Services Division (7502C), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460.
3. Copies for the docket. In addition to filing an objection or hearing request with the Hearing Clerk as described in Unit IX.A., you should also send a copy of your request to the PIRIB for its inclusion in the official record that is described in Unit I.B.2. Mail your copies, identified by docket number OPP-301217, to: Public Information and Records Integrity Branch, Information Resources and Services Division (7502C), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460. In person or by courier, bring a copy to the location of the PIRIB described in Unit I.B.2. You may also send an electronic copy of your request via e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please use an ASCII file format and avoid the use of special characters and any form of encryption. Copies of electronic objections and hearing requests will also be accepted on disks in WordPerfect 6.1/8.0 or ASCII file format. Do not include any CBI in your electronic copy. You may also submit an electronic copy of your request at many Federal Depository Libraries.
B. When Will the Agency Grant a Request for a Hearing?
Request for a hearing will be granted if the Administrator determines that the material submitted shows the following: There is a genuine and substantial issue of fact; there is a reasonable possibility that available evidence identified by the requestor would, if established resolve one or more of such issues in favor of the requestor, taking into account uncontested claims or facts to the contrary; and resolution of the factual issues(s) in the manner sought by the requestor would be adequate to justify the action requested (40 CFR 178.32).
X. Regulatory Assessment Requirements
This final rule establishes an exemption from the tolerance requirement under FFDCA section 408(d) in response to a petition submitted to the Agency. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has exempted these types of actions from review under Executive Order 12866, entitled Regulatory Planning and Review (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993). Because this rule has been exempted from review under Executive Order 12866 due to its lack of significance, this rule is not subject to Executive Order 13211, Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001). This final rule 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 special considerations under Executive Order 12898, entitled Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994); or 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). Since tolerances and exemptions that are established on the basis of a petition under FFDCA section 408(d), such as the exemption in this final rule, do not require the issuance of a proposed rule, the requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) do not apply. 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 Start Printed Page 9218development 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 final 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). For these same reasons, the Agency has determined that this rule does not have any “tribal implications” as described in Executive Order 13175, entitled Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments (65 FR 67249, November 6, 2000). Executive Order 13175, requires EPA to develop an accountable process to ensure “meaningful and timely input by tribal officials in the development of regulatory policies that have tribal implications.” “Policies that have tribal implications ” is defined in the Executive Order to include regulations that have “substantial direct effects on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal government and the Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal government and Indian tribes.” This rule will not have substantial direct effects on tribal governments, on the relationship between the Federal government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal government and Indian tribes, as specified in Executive Order 13175. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this rule.
XI. Submission to Congress and the Comptroller General
The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., as added by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, generally provides that before a rule may take effect, the agency promulgating the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. EPA will submit a report containing this rule and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of this final rule in the Federal Register. This final rule is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).Start List of Subjects
List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 180
- Environmental protection
- Administrative practice and procedure
- Agricultural commodities
- Pesticides and pests
- Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
Dated: February 20, 2002.
Janet L. Andersen,
Director, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division.
Therefore, 40 CFR chapter I is amended as follows:End Amendment Part Start Part
PART 180—[AMENDED]End Part Start Amendment Part
1. The authority citation for part 180 continues to read as follows:End Amendment Part Start Amendment Part
2. Section 180.1197 is revised to read as follows:End Amendment Part
An exemption from the requirement of a tolerance is established for residues of hydrogen peroxide in or on all post-harvest food commodities at the rate of ≤ 1% hydrogen peroxide per application.
[FR Doc. 02-4791 Filed 2-27-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-S