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Court Finds Bee-Toxic Pesticide Sulfoxaflor Approved Illegally

WASHINGTON - Beekeepers, environmental groups, and others calling for stronger protections for pollinators are celebrating a federal court ruling today, which rejected the Environmental Protection Agency ‘s (EPA) registration of a bee-toxic pesticide. In its decision, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that EPA violated its own agency oversight of pesticide registrations when it unconditionally registered sulfoxaflor, a systemic pesticide known to cause harm to bees, without having the appropriate studies for the agency to properly assess the chemical’s impacts on honeybees.

Center for Food Safety (CFS) congratulates Earthjustice, who represented the beekeeping industry in the case, for this tremendous victory. The Court’s decision today underscores the significance of bees and pollinators to biodiversity, agriculture, and our environment. As a result of the Court’s decision, sulfoxaflor cannot be used in the marketplace until and unless EPA reregisters the pesticide in compliance with its duties under the law. That is one less systemic, toxic chemical that will not be harming our nation’s bees to the detriment of our beekeepers.

On behalf of CFS and numerous environmental, consumer, and sustainable agriculture organizations, CFS submitted an amicus brief in support of the beekeepers in the case, outlining the importance of honeybees and other pollinators to U.S. agriculture.

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Center for Food Safety is a national, non-profit, membership organization founded in 1997 to protect human health and the environment by curbing the use of harmful food production technologies and by promoting organic and other forms of sustainable agriculture. CFS maintains offices in Washington, D.C., San Francisco, California and Portland, Oregon, and has more than 300,000 members across the country.

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