The Cardno ChemRisk View
U.S. EPA Releases Guidance Document for Cumulative Pesticide Risk Assessment
Posted on behalf of the author, Derek Drechsel
Recently, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act, proposed new guidelines for conducting cumulative risk assessments for pesticides. The U.S. EPA performs such assessments to evaluate the potential risks associated with exposures from a variety of sources, including food residues and drinking water, to multiple pesticides with a shared mechanism of toxicity. Previously, the U.S. EPA has conducted cumulative risk assessments for several groups of pesticides including organophosphates, N-methyl carbamates, chloracetanilides, triazines, and pyrethrins/pyrethroids. The new proposal builds upon existing U.S. EPA guidelines for the identification and risk assessment of pesticides with common mechanisms of toxicity. Unique to this proposal is a two-step weight-of-evidence analysis: 1) to evaluate a group of pesticides for common toxic mechanism using existing toxicology data, and if warranted 2) to perform a screening-level toxicological and exposure analysis to determine if further cumulative risk assessment is necessary. Ultimately, the U.S. EPA hopes that this process will create a more efficient system for determining risk to groups of pesticides.
More information on the guidance document can be found at the U.S. EPA website.