Federal Appeals Court Orders EPA to Ban Farm Pesticide Chlorpyrifos

A federal appeals court recently ordered the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ban the sale and use of chlorpyrifos, one of the most widely used agricultural pesticides in the United States.

While concerns over the harmful effects of chlorpyrifos on the brain and nervous system caused the EPA to ban the household use of the chemical in 2000, the agency had continued to allow the chemical to be used in commercial agriculture, where some scientists say it can be used in safe quantities.

This most recent decision to ban the pesticide came from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, which blasted the agency – under both Democratic and Republican leadership – for stalling the ban. It gave the EPA 60 days to remove chlorpyrifos from sale in the U.S.

The EPA could still potentially appeal the decision to the Supreme Court.

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