The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has granted a FIFRA Section 18 Emergency Specific Exemption for the use of carbofuran (Furadan 4F Insecticide, EPA 279-2876) on cotton to control cotton aphids on March 15, 2002.

The Texas Department of Agriculture held up the release of the specific exemption pending consultation with the various cotton organizations in Texas as well as Texas Cooperative Extension. There were provisions in the original approval notice that made compliance very difficult, if not impossible, a TDA release noted.

TDA has been in negotiations with EPA since March 15 attempting to get an amendment to the original specific exemption. An amendment was granted April 17.

Copies of the original EPA approval notice and a copy of the amendment are available on request and will also be posted on TDA's web site. The original approval notice must be followed except for provisions of the amendment. In addition, applicable directions of the federally approved container label must be followed by the authority of FIFRA Section 3.

A copy of the EPA approval notice, the amendment and applicable federal labeling must be in possession of the applicator at the time of application. Additional copies of the EPA approval notice and the amendment may be obtained from the TDA web site at:

www.agr.state.tx.us

Applications may be made by certified applicators, licensed applicators or persons under the direct supervision of licensed applicators.

EPA has set a non-binding objective that 25 percent of all cotton acres treated to be treated with the “newly registered alternatives.” Specifically, EPA considers the alternatives to be thiamethoxam (Centric insecticide) and acetamiprid (Intruder insecticide). Use of the newly registered alternatives is not mandatory under the provision but EPA expects us TDA to strongly encourage growers to use the new products as part of their aphid control program up to 25 percent, if possible.

TDA is also required to “undertake and support an outreach and communications program whose objective is to encourage growers to transition to alternative aphid control means. TDA will begin by issuing a news release which is a standard practice for TDA anytime an emergency specific exemption is granted under FIFRA Secion 18. Texas.

Cooperative Extension has agreed to provide coverage in its regular news letters and meetings in which “the availability and comparative efficacy of alternative insecticides at controlling cotton aphid will be discussed.

The amendment also requires copies of materials generated der the outreach effort and overall progress reports be forwarded to EPA on a monthly basis throughout the use season.

TDA is also required to submit to EPA a monthly report of:

  • The intensity of the cotton aphid problem.

  • Usage and acreage estimates for insecticides used, including Centric, Intuder and Furadan.

  • Available field experience and efficacy of the various insecticides used to control the cotton aphid.

  • Results of the outreach effort as described in Amendment Item No. 1.For additional information, please contact Charlie Thomas, Director, TDA Pesticide Registration Program, 512-463-7544, orcharlie.thomas@agr.state.tx.us