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Submissions sought on review of insecticide dichlorvos

25 November 2010

Media release

Submissions sought on review of insecticide dichlorvos

The Environmental Risk Management Authority is calling for submissions on the future use of the insecticide dichlorvos in New Zealand.

The reassessment is part of an ERMA New Zealand Chief Executive-initiated programme to review hazardous substances.

Dichlorvos is an organophosphate-based insecticide used to control insects on fruit, vegetables and flowers. It is also used to control cockroaches and fleas in commercial and domestic settings.

ERMA New Zealand staff have compiled detailed information on the risks, costs and benefits associated with use of dichlorvos in New Zealand in a reassessment application document.

Members of the public and interested parties are now invited to make submissions.

ERMA New Zealand’s Hazardous Substances Reassessments Manager, Lynne Waterson, says dichlorvos targets pests through the nervous system. It also has the potential to affect the nervous systems of people, birds and honeybees and may harm the aquatic environment.

The staff’s preliminary recommendation is to significantly tighten the controls on certain formulations of the substance.

Ms Waterson says the staff recommendation is not the final outcome of the reassessment.

“The information we receive through submissions about the use of this chemical, and its risks and benefits, is an important part of the reassessment process,’’ she says.

A decision will be made by a committee of the Environmental Risk Management Authority once all the information from the public submissions has been evaluated and considered, along with the information already present in the application.

Submissions can be made in writing, either by letter or email, or through the ERMA website.

Submissions close on 18 February, 2011.

To read the full reassessment application, click here: http://www.ermanz.govt.nz/find/WebResults.aspx?search=hrc08004&submit.x=28&submit.y=11

ENDS

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