New rules coming into force for some highly-toxic insecticides

New rules are set to come into force to protect people and the environment from the risks posed by a group of highly toxic insecticides. From 1 July 2015, only specially qualified people will be able to buy many organophosphate and carbamate-based insecticides. These insecticides play an important role in New Zealand’s biosecurity and agriculture industry, but they can harm the environment, and may cause short and long-term health problems. The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) reassessed 28 different active ingredients in organophosphate and carbamate-based insecticides in 2013, and put in a suite of new measures to manage the risks they pose. Ten active ingredients had their approvals revoked immediately, meaning they could no longer be imported or manufactured in New Zealand, and a further two cannot be manufactured or imported after 1 July next year. In addition, the EPA set new rules to manage the risks posed by the remaining active ingredients that were assessed including that most can only be used by qualified people. The new rules will be written on the labels of these products, so anyone who uses them will be able to learn the new rules, and follow them. The rules have been set to protect people, and the environment. There are pamphlets on WorkSafe New Zealand’s website that explain the new rules in more detail: Learn the new rules to use OPC insecticides safely. People who don’t follow the rules may be prosecuted.

NZ EPA, 17 June 2015 ; ;