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Notice

FIFRA Scientific Advisory Panel; Notice of Public Meeting and Nominations of Ad Hoc Panel Members

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

There will be a 3-day in-person meeting of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA SAP) to consider and review Methods for Efficacy Testing of Premises and Soil Treatment for Fire Ant Pesticides. There will also be a 3-hour preparatory virtual meeting of the FIFRA SAP to be conducted via webcast using Adobe Connect and telephone conferencing. Registration will be required to attend this virtual meeting. The date and registration instructions for the virtual meeting will be available on the FIFRA SAP website http://www.epa.gov/​sap by late February to mid-March.

DATES:

The virtual preparatory meeting will be announced in a future Federal Register Notice and on http://www/​epa.gov/​sap. The in-person meeting will be held on May 8 to May 10, 2018, from approximately 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Comments. Written comments on all docketed materials should be submitted on or before March 19, 2018. FIFRA SAP may not be able to fully consider written comments submitted after March 19, 2018. Requests to make oral comments should be submitted on or before April 16, 2018 by contacting the Designated Federal Official (DFO) listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. For additional instructions, see Unit I.C. of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

Nominations. Nominations of candidates to serve as ad hoc members of FIFRA SAP for this meeting should be provided on or before February 26, 2018.

Webcast. The in-person meeting may be webcast. Please refer to the FIFRA SAP website at http://www.epa.gov/​scipoly/​sap for information on how to access the webcast. Please note that the webcast is a supplementary public process provided only for convenience. If difficulties arise resulting in webcasting outages, the meeting will continue as planned.

Special accommodations. For information on access or services for individuals with disabilities, and to request accommodation of a disability, please contact the DFO listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT at least 10 days prior to the meeting to allow EPA time to process your request.

ADDRESSES:

Meeting: The meeting will be held at the Environmental Protection Agency, Conference Center, Lobby Level, One Potomac Yard (South Bldg.), 2777 S. Crystal Dr., Arlington, VA 22202.

Comments. Submit your comments, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPP-2017-0693, by one of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.
  • Mail: OPP Docket, Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), (28221T), 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460-0001.
  • Hand Delivery: To make special arrangements for hand delivery or delivery of boxed information, please follow the instructions at http://www.epa.gov/​dockets/​contacts.html.

Additional instructions on commenting or visiting the docket, along with more information about dockets generally, is available at http://www.epa.gov/​dockets.

Nominations, requests to present oral comments, and requests for special accommodations. Submit nominations to serve as ad hoc members of FIFRA SAP, requests for special accommodations, or requests to present oral comments to the DFO listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Dr. Marquea D. King, DFO, Office of Science Coordination and Policy (7201M), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: 202-564-3626; email address: king.marquea@epa.gov. You may also subscribe to the following listservs to be notified when notices regarding this and Start Printed Page 3705other SAP related activities are published.

https://public.govdelivery.com/​accounts/​USAEPAOPPT/​subscriber/​new?​topic_​id=​USAEPAOPPT_​101

https://public.govdelivery.com/​accounts/​USAEPAOPPT/​subscribers/​qualify

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. General Information

A. Does this action apply to me?

This action may be of interest to the public in general and those who are or may be required to conduct testing of chemical substances and provide submissions to the EPA under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA), FIFRA and/or Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Since other entities may also be interested, the Agency has not attempted to describe all the specific entities that may be affected by this action.

B. What should I consider as I prepare my comments for EPA?

1. Submitting CBI. Do not submit CBI information to EPA through regulations.gov or email. If your comments contain any information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected, please contact the DFO listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT to obtain special instructions before submitting your comments.

2. Tips for preparing your comments. When preparing and submitting your comments, see the commenting tips at http://www.epa.gov/​dockets/​comments.html.

C. How may I participate in this meeting?

You may participate in this meeting by following the instructions in this unit. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, it is imperative that you identify docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2017-0693 in the subject line on the first page of your request.

1. Written comments. Written comments should be submitted, using the instructions in ADDRESSES and Unit I.B., on or before March 19, 2018, to provide FIFRA SAP the time necessary to consider and review the written comments. FIFRA SAP may not be able to fully consider written comments submitted after March 19, 2018.

2. Oral comments. The Agency encourages each individual or group wishing to make brief oral comments to FIFRA SAP to submit their request to the DFO listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT on or before April 16, 2018, in order to be included on the meeting agenda. Requests to present oral comments will be accepted until the date of the meeting and, to the extent that time permits, the Chair of FIFRA SAP may permit the presentation of oral comments at the meeting by interested persons who have not previously requested time. Oral comments before FIFRA SAP are limited to approximately 5 minutes unless arrangements have been made prior to April 16, 2018. The request should identify the name of the individual making the presentation, the organization (if any) the individual will represent, and any requirements for audiovisual equipment. In addition, each speaker should bring 20 copies of their oral remarks and presentation slides (if required) for distribution to FIFRA SAP at the meeting by the DFO.

3. Seating at the meeting. Seating at the meeting will be open and on a first-come basis.

4. Request for nominations to serve as ad hoc expert members of FIFRA SAP for this meeting. As part of a broader process for developing a pool of candidates for each meeting, FIFRA SAP staff routinely solicits the stakeholder community for nominations of prospective candidates for service as ad hoc members of FIFRA SAP. Any interested person or organization may nominate qualified individuals to be considered as prospective candidates for a specific meeting. Individuals nominated for this meeting should have expertise in one or more of the following areas:

Entomologists and other scientists who are generally familiar with pesticide efficacy testing and application methods for public health pests including those who are specifically familiar with premises pesticide efficacy testing for flies, cockroaches, yellow jackets, mosquitoes, and/or ticks; and those who are familiar with pesticide efficacy testing for control of field populations of red imported fire ants.

Nominees should be scientists who have sufficient professional qualifications, including training and experience, to be capable of providing expert comments on the scientific issues for this meeting. Nominees should be identified by name, occupation, position, address, email address, and telephone number. Nominations should be provided to the DFO listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT on or before February 26, 2018. The Agency will consider all nominations of prospective candidates for this meeting that are received on or before that date. However, final selection of ad hoc members for this meeting is a discretionary function of the Agency.

The selection of scientists to serve on FIFRA SAP is based on the function of the Panel and the expertise needed to address the Agency's charge to the Panel. No interested scientists shall be ineligible to serve by reason of their membership on any other advisory committee to a Federal department or agency or their employment by a Federal department or agency, except EPA. Other factors considered during the selection process include availability of the potential Panel member to fully participate in the Panel's review, absence of any conflicts of interest or appearance of lack of impartiality, independence with respect to the matters under review, and lack of bias. Although financial conflicts of interest, the appearance of lack of impartiality, lack of independence, and bias may result in disqualification, the absence of such concerns does not assure that a candidate will be selected to serve on FIFRA SAP. Numerous qualified candidates are identified for each Panel. Therefore, selection decisions involve carefully weighing a number of factors including the candidates' areas of expertise and professional qualifications and achieving an overall balance of different scientific perspectives on the Panel. In order to have the collective breadth of experience needed to address the Agency's peer review charge for this meeting, the Agency anticipates selecting approximately 12 ad hoc scientists.

FIFRA SAP members are subject to the provisions of 5 CFR part 2634—Executive Branch Financial Disclosure, Qualified Trusts, and Certificates of Divestiture, as supplemented by EPA in 5 CFR part 6401. In anticipation of this requirement, prospective candidates for service on FIFRA SAP will be asked to submit confidential financial information which shall fully disclose, among other financial interests, the candidate's employment, stocks and bonds, and where applicable, sources of research support. EPA will evaluate the candidate's financial disclosure form to assess whether there are financial conflicts of interest, appearance of a lack of impartiality, or any prior involvement with the development of the documents under consideration (including previous scientific peer review) before the candidate is considered further for service on FIFRA SAP. Those who are selected from the pool of prospective candidates will be asked to attend the public meetings and to participate in the discussion of key issues and assumptions at these meetings. In addition, they will be asked Start Printed Page 3706to review and to help finalize the meeting minutes and the final meeting report. The list of FIFRA SAP members participating at this meeting will be posted on the FIFRA SAP website at http://www.epa.gov/​scipoly/​sap or may be obtained from the OPP Docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

II. Background

A. Purpose of FIFRA SAP

FIFRA SAP serves as a primary scientific peer review mechanism of EPA's Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) and is structured to provide scientific advice, information and recommendations to the EPA Administrator on pesticides and pesticide-related issues as to the impact of regulatory actions on health and the environment. FIFRA SAP is a Federal advisory committee established in 1975 under FIFRA that operates in accordance with requirements of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. Appendix). FIFRA SAP is composed of a permanent panel consisting of seven members who are appointed by the EPA Administrator from nominees provided by the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. The FIFRA SAP is assisted in their reviews by ad hoc participation from members of the Science Review Board (SRB). As a scientific peer review mechanism, FIFRA SAP provides comments, evaluations, and recommendations to improve the effectiveness and quality of analyses made by Agency scientists. The FIFRA SAP is not required to reach consensus in its recommendations to the Agency but consensus is a preferred outcome and possible under FACA.

B. Public Meeting

EPA-registered pesticide products are an important part of pest management programs to accomplish control of invertebrate pests. The Agency has a number of guidelines intended to assist in the development of appropriate protocols to test product efficacy. EPA Product Performance Test Guidelines OPPTS 810.3100 Soil Treatment for Imported Fire Ants and OPPTS 810.3500 Premises Treatments were published in March 1998. To increase clarity and consistency in efficacy testing and to include current scientific standards, the Agency is revising these product performance guidelines. The Agency will be seeking advice and recommendations from the SAP on scientific issues associated with the two proposed revised EPA guidelines.

The proposed premises treatment guideline contains recommended test methodologies for a wide range of products intended to kill, control, flush, and/or knockdown invertebrate premises pests, such as cockroaches, ticks, mosquitoes, flies, and wasps. The guideline does not cover treatment of livestock or pets, wide area-mosquito control, or bed bug products. In addition to guidance for testing efficacy of direct pesticide application to pests, residual treatments, and cockroach and fly baits in the laboratory, the proposed guideline also includes field testing methods for outdoor misting systems, Hymenoptera nest treatments, and outdoor foggers. Finally, methods for resistance ratio determination and characterization of pest population strain susceptibility are described.

The proposed red imported fire ant treatment guideline contains recommended test methodologies for evaluating the performance of pesticide products for the treatment and control of red imported fire ant colonies/mounds. The guideline does not cover premises treatments for red imported fire ant workers/foragers, such as direct application to pests. Field tests for both mound- and area-applied pesticide products are proposed, along with accompanying laboratory studies for baits, barrier treatments, and insect growth regulators.

C. FIFRA SAP Documents and Meeting Minutes

EPA's background paper, draft charge questions to FIFRA SAP, and related supporting materials will be available on or before January 22, 2018. In addition, a list of candidates under consideration as prospective ad hoc panelists for this meeting will be available for a 15-day public comment period in early to mid-March. You may obtain electronic copies of most meeting documents, including FIFRA SAP composition (i.e., members and ad hoc members for this meeting) and the meeting agenda, at http://www.regulations.gov and the FIFRA SAP website at http://www.epa.gov/​scipoly/​sap.

FIFRA SAP will prepare the meeting minutes and final report summarizing its recommendations to the Agency approximately 90 days after the meeting. The meeting minutes and final report will be posted on the FIFRA SAP website or may be obtained from the OPP Docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

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Authority: 7 U.S.C. 136 et. seq.; 21 U.S.C. 301 et seq.

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Dated: January 9, 2018.

Stanley Barone, Jr.,

Acting Director, Office of Science Coordination and Policy.

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[FR Doc. 2018-01495 Filed 1-25-18; 8:45 am]

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