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For Immediate Release

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Paul Achitoff, 808.599.2436 x 6612

Press Release

Hawai‘i Legislature Approves First-of-its-Kind Chlorpyrifos State Ban

Governor could sign bill into law in the coming days.
Honolulu, HI -

Today, Hawaii’s legislature approved a state ban on chlorpyrifos, a highly dangerous restricted use pesticide (RUP) widely used in industrial farming. Besides phasing out all chlorpyrifos uses by 2023, this comprehensive bill puts in place robust pesticide reporting, prohibits the use of the most toxic pesticides within 100 feet of schools during normal school hours, requires a pesticide drift monitoring pilot study, and beefs up funding for the state’s pesticide enforcement. Governor David Ige could sign the bill into law in the coming days.

Chlorpyrifos has been linked to reduced IQ and attention deficit disorder in children, and is highly toxic to farmworkers, some of whom have been poisoned by it on multiple occasions on Hawai‘i farms in recent years.  Last year, the EPA refused to ban chlorpyrifos, claiming the science is “unresolved” and decided it would study the issue until 2022. 

The following statement is from Paul Achitoff, Earthjustice managing attorney:

“We applaud the Hawaii legislature for passing this important bill and commend Senators Russell Ruderman and Mike Gabbard, as well as Representatives Richard Creagan and Chris Lee, for their leadership on this issue. Banning this nerve agent from our food and farms is critical to protecting children, workers, and countless communities that face the dangers of pesticide drift every day. We urge the governor to sign the first chlorpyrifos ban in the nation and rid Hawaii of this dangerous chemical once and for all.”

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Earthjustice is a non-profit public interest law firm dedicated to protecting the magnificent places, natural resources, and wildlife of this earth, and to defending the right of all people to a healthy environment. We bring about far-reaching change by enforcing and strengthening environmental laws on behalf of hundreds of organizations, coalitions and communities.

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