From a news release
Health Canada is proposing to phase out agricultural uses of the neonicotinoid imidacloprid and is also launching special reviews for two other neonics.
In a statement released on Wednesday, health department officials said they have completed a re-evaluation of imidaclopridm and have published a draft risk assessment for public comment.
According to the statement, the assessment proposes that current use of imidacloprid is not sustainable, and the levels of this pesticide that are being found in waterways and aquatic environments are harmful to aquatic insects, such as mayflies and midges, which are important food sources for fish, birds and other animals.
To address the risks identified, Health Canada has also published a proposed risk management plan for public comment, which includes a proposed three-year phase-out of agricultural uses of imidacloprid in order to address risks to aquatic insects. In some cases, where there are no alternative pest control products available, a longer phase-out transition period of five years is being proposed.
“We are consulting on these proposed mitigation measures, and the final re-evaluation decision and risk management plan will take into consideration any comments received during the consultations,” noted the statement.
The consultation phase includes a 90-day commentary period in addition to a multi-stakeholder forum that would discuss any proposals for potential alternative mitigation strategies that would achieve the same outcomes in a similar timeframe.
“However, any proposals for continued registration would need to clearly demonstrate concrete actions that would ensure that levels of imidacloprid in water would be reduced below the level of concern.”
Based on the findings of the re-evaluation assessment on imidacloprid, the department is also launching reviews for clothianidin and thiamethoxam. These special reviews will examine any potential risks these pesticides may pose to aquatic invertebrates, including insects, as they are also being detected frequently in aquatic environments.