Hawai‘i First in Nation to Enact Law Banning Pesticides Containing Chlorpyrifos
Hawaiʻi becomes the first in the nation to enact a law banning pesticides containing chlorpyrifos. Governor David Ige signed Senate Bill 3095 into law on Wednesday, which completely bans the use of pesticides containing the potentially harmful chemical, starting in 2023.
The chemical has been linked to developmental delays and learning disabilities in children. In 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency recommended that the pesticide be banned from all food crops.
Starting Jan. 1, 2019, users of pesticides containing chlorpyrifos or other restricted use pesticides will be required to report annually to the state Department of Agriculture; will be prohibited from using the chemical within a 100-foot buffer zone around schools during school hours; will be prohibited from applying pesticides with chlorpyrifos without a temporary permit, until 2023 when it will be completely banned.
The Department of Agriculture has already restricted the use of chlorpyrifos in its proposed pesticides rule, and the use of the chemical has declined drastically.
“Protecting the health and safety of our keiki and residents is one of my top priorities. We must protect our communities from potentially harmful chemicals. At the same time, Hawai‘i’s agriculture industry is extremely important to our state and economy. We will work with the Department of Agriculture, local farmers and the University of Hawai‘i as we seek safe, alternative pest management tools that will support and sustain our agriculture industry for generations to come,” said Gov. Ige.
With the governor’s signature, SB 3095 becomes Act 45.