Feb. 3: NCGA Director of Public Policy Jessica Bennett testified Tuesday, Feb. 2 before an Environmental Protection Agency Scientific Advisory Panel on the importance of atrazine. The panel was convened in the wake of the agency’s announcement of a comprehensive review of health and ecological risks associated with the commonly used herbicide.
“For more than 50 years, more than half of all American corn growers have relied on atrazine to protect their crops from a variety of grass and broadleaf weeds,” Bennett said. “By EPA’s own estimate, atrazine saves corn farmers as much as $28 an acre in reduced herbicide costs and increased yields. For all these reasons, atrazine is not just a good product. It is a vital product.”
NCGA has previously testified on the thousands of existing studies that have been considered over the past decade by EPA in supporting the registration and safe use of atrazine in the United States. NCGA has also signed on to a letter that more than 150 agricultural organizations sent to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson outlining their concerns on the potential ban of atrazine.
“Atrazine not only supports corn production but also provides environmental benefits. Every farmer is, of necessity, a conservationist,” Bennett said. “We care deeply about our impact on the land and water and what we will leave behind for our children and grandchildren. That is why so many corn farmers are proud to rely on atrazine for no-till conservation agriculture on more than 44 million corn acres—a practice that is preventing soil erosion, protecting waterways and sequestering significant amounts of carbon dioxide across America.”
Click here for NCGA's testimony