Farmers are being asked to continue contacting the Environmental Protection Agency concerning its comments about atrazine.
Currently, the EPA is recommending a ban despite the popularity of the herbicide, which is used for weed control in corn and other crops.
“Atrazine is a safe and effect crop management tool. If EPA succeeds in taking away this option, it will be sending farming practices back decades – and hurt the environment in the process,” National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling said. “As a farmer and a conservationist, I can’t let this go unanswered. That’s why I’m urging farmers to contact the EPA and make their voices heard.”
The recommendation would reduce the aquatic life level of concern (LOC) from 10 parts per billion to 3.4 parts per billion even though there is scientific evidence that aquatic life LOC is safe at much higher levels. The benefits outweigh the negatives according to NCGA who states that atrazine can reduce the amount of tilling by farmers, which can reduce soil erosion and the loss of water and nutrients found in the soil. Finally, NCGA cites studies that concluded that the atrazine ban would cost corn farmers up to $59 more per acre.
Farmers have until Aug. 5 to submit their comments to the EPA.