2020 Pesticide Policies

Washington Statehouse in Olympia

NCAP works to protect community and environmental health through important policy campaigns in our region. We will update this page with opportunities for you to take action to support policy change at the state level. Read below for talking points on a few on-going campaigns, information about recent wins, and find contact information for your legislators.

HB 4109 (Oregon) - SUPPORT Reintroduction in 2021!

NCAP joined efforts led by PCUN and Beyond Toxics to pass HB 4109, which would have immediately banned aerial spraying of chlorpyrifos in Oregon and ended all other uses effective January 2022. Chlorpyrifos is a dangerous insecticide, widely used on a variety of crops, including strawberries, apples, wheat and Christmas trees. Chlorpyrifos is a neurotoxin – damaging the brains and nervous systems of those who are exposed. Farmworkers, rural communities, children, pregnant mothers and endangered wildlife are especially at risk. Thank you to our Oregon supporters who contacted your Representatives. 

Timeline: This bill passed out of the House floor on February 19, 2020 and moved through the Senate committee on 2/26. It was looking good in the Senate, but then the Oregon Legislative session was abruptly ended by a GOP Walkout. Efforts will continue next session and you can contact your legislators to show your support anytime! 

Click for contact information for Oregon legislators

Contact your Senator! Talking points you can use:

  • As a constituent of your district, I am writing to urge your support of continued efforts toban the use of chlorpyrifos in Oregon in 2021, such as HB 4109 from 2020.
  • According to the EPA, in an average diet, Americans unknowingly consume high amounts of chlorpyrifos, resulting in exposures many times levels EPA deems safe. Shockingly, children ages one to two consume chlorpyrifos in food at levels 140 times their “safe” level, according to EPA estimates.
  • In 2017, the National Marine Fisheries Service determined that this chemical jeopardizes the survival and recovery of all listed salmon and steelhead in Oregon, Washington and California. Orca whales in Washington are also jeopardized by chlorpyrifos.
  • Many growers in Oregon already utilize cost-effective, ecosystem-based alternatives that reduce insect pressure without the use of a neurotoxin.
  • The EPA is not following the advice of its own scientists in finalizing a federal ban. Oregon has an opportunity to step up and protect kids, farmworkers and endangered salmon.

Here is a factsheet on chlorpyrifos alternatives for growers in Oregon. 


SB 6518 (Washington) - SUPPORT Reintroduction in 2021!

Washington also considered a bill to ban chlorpyrifos, but the number of exempted crops and allowance for “emergency” applications was highly concerning. NCAP shared information about alternative practices and products with legislators and pushed for amendments to make the bill stronger. The bill made it through the Senate and House, but was vetoed by Governor Inslee citing budget concerns.

Timeline: Legislation to ban chlorpyrifos in Washington state is expected to be introduced again next year. NCAP will continue to work with various partners to ensure that legislation reflects the high toxicity of chlorpyrifos and that the discussion is rooted in the voices of farmworkers who want less toxic alternatives.

Click for contact information for Washington legislators

Contact your Representative! Talking points you can use:

  • As a constituent of your district, I am writing to urge your support of a full ban of chlorpyrifos in Washington in 2021.
  • According to the EPA, in an average diet, Americans unknowingly consume high amounts of chlorpyrifos, resulting in exposures many times levels EPA deems safe. Shockingly, children ages one to two consume chlorpyrifos in food at levels 140 times their “safe” level, according to EPA estimates.
  • In 2017, the National Marine Fisheries Service determined that this chemical jeopardizes the survival and recovery of all listed salmon and steelhead in Oregon, Washington and California. Orca whales in Washington are also jeopardized by chlorpyrifos.
  • Many growers in Washington already utilize cost-effective, ecosystem-based alternatives that reduce insect pressure without the use of a neurotoxin. Exempting crops is not necessary as growers have preventative methods they can employ to keep insect outbreaks from occurring.
  • The EPA is not following the advice of its own scientists in finalizing a federal ban. Washington has an opportunity to step up and protect kids, farmworkers and endangered salmon.

Here is a factsheet on chlorpyrifos alternatives for growers in Washington.


SB 6488 (Washington) - SUPPORT Reintroduction in 2021!

NCAP was honored to be part of the Washington SSB 5597 Aerial Herbicide Application in Forestlands Work Group in 2019. NCAP’s goal in the work group was to raise awareness about the community and environmental impacts of pesticide use and exposure, and to encourage ecologically and scientifically sound alternatives to harmful pesticides. As a result of the workgroup, SB 6488 was introduced, which would improve communications and best management practices regarding the application of aerial herbicides in forestlands, and prioritize evaluation and trials of non-chemical vegetation management strategies. SB 6488 passed out of the Senate on February 19, 2020 and died in the last days of the session while moving through the house.

Timeline: We expect this to be reintroduced during the 2021 legislative session and urge our supporters to urge their legislators to support.

Click for contact information for Washington legislators

Contact your Representative! Talking points you can use:

  • It is important to prioritize evaluation and trials of non-chemical vegetation management strategies on forest lands to protect human and environmental health.
  • High-hazard pesticides should be phased out of application in forests immediately.
  • This bill is an important start, and additional steps should be taken to reduce risks to people and wildlife.

HB 487 (Idaho) - OPPOSITION WON in 2020!

HB 487 passed the House, but strong amendments in the Senate staved off our top concerns thanks to grassroots organizing by us and our Idaho partners. The penalty matrix ISDA uses to assess fees and other regulatory actions will be updated through a negotiated rulemaking, a process that will be open to all interested parties. NCAP considers this a WIN and would like to thank our rockstar legislators who led the opposition to the original bill, Representative Sally Toone and Senator Jim Guthrie. We are proud to have worked with Visión 2C Resource Council, Idaho Organization or Resource Councils, and Idaho Conservation League to insure that the original bill brought by the Idaho Aerial Applicators Association was influenced to better address concerns of farm workers.

NCAP opposed HB 487 because if passed in its original form it could have limited the Idaho State Department of Agriculture’s ability to seek corrective action in the event of pesticide exposure incidents like the one that occurred over Memorial Day weekend in 2021 near Parma Idaho that sickened over two dozen people working in an onion field. 

Click for contact information for Idaho legislators

Talking points used for grassroots lobbying: 

  • This bill is a direct response by aerial applicators to reduce regulation of their industry, after over a dozen farmworkers became ill from a pilot spraying the field next to where they were working.
  • According to a decision issued by Idaho's Attorney General, this legislation could open Idaho up to violating its cooperative agreement with the EPA, which could lead to Idaho losing primacy over enforcing pesticide regulation in the state.
  • Idaho Code 22-3420(7) expands protections for someone accused of misusing pesticides. By eliminating the words “faulty” and “careless” from statute this legislation makes it more difficult to prove an individual or company misused pesticides. Striking these from the statute would expose workers and the public to greater harm. There are greater legal hurdles to demonstrate negligence.  
  • ISDA already has guidelines relating to restrictions and penalties, so this attempt to create a new process is unnecessary.
  • Governor Little's recent executive order requiring agencies to review rules every five years on a rolling basis makes the language this bill seeks to include in statute redundant.

Showing 1 reaction

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
  • Laura Keir
    published this page in TAKE ACTION 2020-02-26 09:03:57 -0800