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Daily News Blog

11
May

Tell EPA and Congress that ALL Ingredients in Pesticides Must Be Disclosed

(Beyond Pesticides, May 11, 2020) Protecting ourselves from Covid-19 requires not only that we avoid contact with the virus, but also that we avoid exposing ourselves to chemicals that may disrupt our immune or respiratory systems. But when it comes to pesticide products—and disinfectants are pesticides—we encounter once again the problem of so-called “inert,” or nondisclosed, ingredients.

Tell EPA and Congress that ALL Ingredients in Pesticides Must Be Disclosed.

“Inert” ingredients are not necessarily chemically or biologically harmless. “Inert” or “other” ingredients—as distinguished from “active” ingredients—are generally the majority of the product formulation that makes up the liquid, spray, dust, or granule, but does not specifically attack the pest, according to the manufacturer. They include emulsifiers, solvents, carriers, aerosol propellants, fragrances, and dyes. Many “inerts” are quite toxic, and may be “active” ingredients in other products. “Inert” ingredients may also be described as “adjuvants” or “formulants.” “Inerts” are typically not listed on the label, and hence are often called “secret ingredients.”

Beyond Pesticides reviews the disinfectants on EPA’s List N, which are approved for use against the novel coronavirus, but it is only possible to review the active ingredients. One product on the list, for example, contains 99.7784% “other ingredients.” Unfortunately, although this product may contain mostly water, it also may be composed mostly of such “inert” ingredients as 4-chlorotoluene, ethylbenzene, or petroleum distillates, all of which (among others) can weaken the respiratory and/or immune systems, making an exposed person more susceptible to Covid-19. We don’t know.

While it has never been acceptable to hide product ingredients on pesticide products, the current pandemic makes this information crucial for consumers who want to protect themselves and their families. Whether it is disinfectants or pesticide products in use in the home, yard, and community the secrecy on this public health issue must end, and EPA has the authority to require labeling . Please urge EPA use its legal authority to require disclosure of all ingredients on pesticide labels to protect public health.

Tell EPA and Congress that ALL Ingredients in Pesticides Must Be Disclosed.

Letter to EPA Administrator and Office of Pesticide Program Director

I am writing you because the current pandemic has brought home to me the importance of disclosure of all ingredients in pesticide products that can exacerbate the public’s vulnerability to Covid-19. Protecting ourselves from Covid-19 requires not only that we avoid contact with the virus, but also that we avoid exposing ourselves to chemicals that may disrupt our immune and respiratory systems. But when it comes to pesticides—and disinfectants are pesticides—I encounter the problem of so-called “inert” ingredients.

“Inert” ingredients are not necessarily chemically or biologically inert. Many are quite toxic, and may be “active” ingredients in other products. “Inert” or “other” ingredients—as distinguished from “active” ingredients—are simply those for which the pesticide manufacturer does not make a pesticidal claim. “Inerts” are typically not listed on the label, and hence they are “secret ingredients.” They include emulsifiers, solvents, carriers, aerosol propellants, fragrances, and dyes.

In deciding on a disinfectant to use in my home, I review products on EPA’s List N, which are approved for use against the novel coronavirus, but it is only possible to review the active ingredients. One product on the list, for example, contains 99.7784% “other ingredients.” Unfortunately, although this product may contain mostly water, it also may be composed mostly of such “inert” ingredients as 4-chlorotoluene, ethylbenzene, or petroleum distillates, all of which (among others) can weaken my respiratory and/or immune systems, making me more susceptible to Covid-19. I don’t know because “inert” ingredients are not disclosed.

While it has never been acceptable to hide product ingredients on pesticide products, the current pandemic makes this information crucial for consumers who want to protect themselves and their families. Whether it is disinfectants or pesticide products in use in the home, yard, and community the secrecy on this public health issue must end, and EPA has the authority to require labeling. Please require disclosure of all ingredients on pesticide labels as a matter of public health protection.

Thank you.

Letter to U.S. Senators and Representative

I am writing you because the current pandemic has brought home to me the importance of disclosure of all ingredients in pesticide products that can exacerbate the public’s vulnerability to Covid-19. Protecting ourselves from Covid-19 requires not only that we avoid contact with the virus, but also that we avoid exposing ourselves to chemicals that may disrupt our immune and respiratory systems. But when it comes to pesticides—and disinfectants are pesticides—I encounter the problem of so-called “inert” ingredients.

“Inert” ingredients are not necessarily chemically or biologically inert. Many are quite toxic, and may be “active” ingredients in other products. “Inert” or “other” ingredients—as distinguished from “active” ingredients— are simply those for which the pesticide manufacturer does not make a pesticidal claim. “Inerts” are typically not listed on the label, and hence they are “secret ingredients.” They include emulsifiers, solvents, carriers, aerosol propellants, fragrances, and dyes.

In deciding on a disinfectant to use in my home, I review products on EPA’s List N, which are approved for use against the novel coronavirus, but it is only possible to review the active ingredients. One product on the list, for example, contains 99.7784% “other ingredients.” Unfortunately, although this product may contain mostly water, it also may be composed mostly of such “inert” ingredients as 4-chlorotoluene, ethylbenzene, or petroleum distillates, all of which (among others) can weaken my respiratory and/or immune systems, making me more susceptible to Covid-19. I don’t know because “inert” ingredients are not disclosed.

While it has never been acceptable to hide product ingredients on pesticide products, the current pandemic makes this information crucial for consumers who want to protect themselves and their families. Whether it is disinfectants or pesticide products in use in the home, yard, and community the secrecy on this public health issue must end, and EPA has the authority to require labeling.  Please urge EPA to require disclosure of all ingredients on pesticide labels, as a matter of public health protection.

Thank you.

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2 Responses to “Tell EPA and Congress that ALL Ingredients in Pesticides Must Be Disclosed”

  1. 1
    pa mort Says:

    Label all ingredients.

  2. 2
    Dorothy Anderson Says:

    Disclose ingredients in pesticides.

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