WASHINGTON, July 26, 2017 - A group of seven Democratic senators introduced a bill Tuesday to ban use of chlorpyrifos on food products. EPA concluded in March that evidence of the insecticide’s neurodevelopmental effects was not strong enough to justify restricting its use, and last week, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected environmental groups’ challenge to that decision.

That set the stage for the unveiling of the bill yesterday, sponsored by senators Tom Udall of New Mexico, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Kamala Harris of California, Dick Durbin of Illinois, Ben Cardin of Maryland, and Ed Markey of Massachusetts.

Udall, who led the effort, and other bill supporters contend the insecticide, manufactured by Dow AgroSciences and sold under the trade name Lorsban, has been linked to reduced IQ and attention deficit disorder in children. The bill, S. 1624, directs EPA “to partner with the National Research Council to assess the neurodevelopmental effects and other low-dose impacts that exposure to organophosphate pesticides has on agricultural workers and children,” Earthjustice said in a release. Dow has consistently maintained that authorized uses of chlorpyrifos products “offer wide margins of protection for human health and safety.”