In a move that put almost anyone who comes into contact with many common foods at risk, the Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency refused to ban the toxic pesticide chlorpyrifos.
Based on many scientific studies, the EPA determined that even very low levels of exposure to chlorpyrifos—a pesticide used on staple foods like corn, wheat, apples and citrus—can cause irreparable harm and damage children’s developing brains.
But the Trump administration’s EPA refused to ban this dangerous chemical from our food, a decision that neglects the agency’s own science and puts millions at risk.
Chlorpyrifos contaminates our food and water, and agricultural workers and families in rural communities are at the front lines of exposure to this neurotoxic chemical. Exposing children to chlorpyrifos results in reduced IQ, loss of working memory and attention deficit disorders. Workers poisoned by chlorpyrifos experience vomiting, muscle cramps and twitching, tremors and weakness. This neurotoxic pesticide was banned for residential use nearly two decades ago, so why would the EPA continue to allow it to be used on farms, where it can poison everything it touches?
On his first day in office, President Biden signed an executive order directing EPA to review the Trump administration’s decision to deny a 2007 petition to ban chlorpyrifos on food. With President Biden’s administrator, Michael Regan, at the helm, one of his first actions should be to grant the petition and ban this toxic pesticide immediately.
Earthjustice will hold the EPA accountable. We’re in court asking for an order directing the EPA to put a full ban in place and we’re asking the Biden EPA to right this wrong and ban chlorpyrifos on its own. Join us in urging the government to keep this toxic pesticide out of our food, our water, our schools and yards, and our bodies.