The Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) has rejected a petition by several prominent environmental groups to regulate seeds treated with the neonicotinoid class of insecticides. If approved, the proposal would have considered the seeds as restricted materials.

According to the California Seed Association, DPR did not completely dismiss the concerns. The department plans to “initiate marketplace surveillance targeted at these products to determine how, where and for what purposes they are being used.” The results will inform potential actions.

DPR is also on track to launch a sustainable pest management workgroup. DPR Director Val Dolcini (above) said on Thursday his chief priority is to establish a sustainable pest management workgroup to develop a roadmap” for decreasing chemical pesticide use in the state. The group will develop tools, techniques, protocols and practices to manage pests in a more sustainable fashion.” Dolcini hopes to appoint the members soon and begin work in January, with a roadmap ready in 18 months.

I'm really excited for that opportunity to continue the work that the chlorpyrifos group started,” said Dolcini.