Scientists from the University of Aarhus, Denmark, the Agroscope Research Center, Switzerland, and the Vetagro Sap National Agricultural School, France, published an article in the journal Political Forum of Science, calling for a review of the regulatory framework that defines how to use pesticides. Christopher Topping, Annette Aldrich and Philip Burnie suggest that the current system is outdated and needs to be replaced.
The authors note that most of the rules for using pesticides in force in Europe, the USA and many other countries were adopted in the early 1990s on the basis of the principle "one pesticide - one application", that is, pesticides were tested on only one crop.
Now the conditions have changed. Pesticide alone is often used in a wide variety of crops.
The understanding of the impact of pesticides on the environment has also changed - new data have appeared on the effects of agrochemistry on non-target insects, birds and other creatures, on rivers, streams and even oceans, when the active substances of plant protection products enter the hydrological cycle through the runoff.
The authors believe that changing the entrenched system of pesticidal rules in different countries with a “common denominator” would be a huge progress, albeit with a number of difficulties. However, this should happen.
Experts note that changing the rules will not necessarily cause economic damage to farmers - more stringent rules will help prevent the thoughtless use of crop protection products and determine exactly where and where to apply agrochemicals. They urge countries to join hands in this effort, as there are still significant differences in regulations between states - for example, the European Union recently banned chlorpyrifos because it is related to children's health problems, but the United States allowed the application because the EPA (Agency for US Environmental Protection Agency) did not agree with the EU assessment. An international consensus on a particular drug will solve the problem.
Finally, the authors conclude that when creating a new regulatory system, one should take into account the tools that would allow the general public to be informed about the risks of certain pesticides.
A source: agro xxi.ru (according to phys.org).