May 6, 2021
It looks likely the EPA will be banning one of the spray chemicals some hazelnut farmers cite as a reason they claim a trail can’t be adjacent to their orchards.
Last week a federal appeals court ordered the EPA to ban the use of Chlorpyrifos (aka Lorsban, Dursban, Yuma4E) on food crops, or come up with methods and proof it can be safely used within 60 days. California, Hawaii and New York have already banned the chemical, which studies show is linked to memory loss, autism and other disorders. One of the chemicals’ main suppliers has already announced it will stop making it.
At least one local farmer has pointed to application restrictions for Chlorpyrifos products as a reason a trail adjacent to his property would cause significant impacts to his farm practices. However, another local hazelnut farmer has pointed out in testimony to County Commissioners that the restrictions for this extremely toxic chemical are the same adjacent to roads or other properties, whether trail or not, and that there were inconsistencies in what farmers were telling the Land Use Board of Appeals about their application rates and how a trail nearby might impact their process. He also points out that Oregon State University recommends several alternatives to this chemical. See following article for this testimony.