The long-awaited adoption of the Sustainable Use Directive by EU Ministers has been welcomed by the UK amenity pesticide industry.
Mark Phillips, Chairman of the Crop Protection Association's Amenity Group, said the amenity sector would need to work hard to meet the Directive's requirements.
"The new rules set rigorous EU-wide standards for more sustainable pesticide use, placing a duty of care on all users to ensure safety and 'Best Practice' at all times. Crucially, the legislation requires each country to adopt National Action Plans with measurable targets, indicators and timetables to reduce the risks and impacts associated with pesticide use," he said.
Full details of the UK National Action Plans are due to be announced in a consultation by the Chemical Regulations Directorate (CRD) later this year.
Richard Minton, CPA Amenity Group Secretary added: "The Sustainable Use Directive will have a direct impact on the amenity industry. A number of requirements covered by the new legislation are already in place in the UK, although some voluntary measures will now become statutory.
"It is critical that all industry stakeholders embrace the requirements of the Directive and adapt their practices accordingly to safeguard the enormous benefits of amenity pesticide use in areas such as sports and recreation, and to protect our transport and utilities infrastructure."
The new directive covers a number of key areas:
- A requirement to set-up training systems for distributors, advisors and professional users of pesticides and certification systems;
- Measures to protect the aquatic environment and drinking water, public spaces and special conservation areas;
- A requirement to ensure greater promotion and an approach of integrated vegetation management;
- Regular inspection of pesticide application equipment;
- Measures to ensure preference is given to the least hazardous products, and to promote the most efficient application techniques such as the use of low-drift pesticide application equipment.
The Crop Protection Association will shortly be issuing a new booklet entitled 'Amenity - Best Practice: Using Pesticides in the Community', providing guidance to users and operators on the Sustainable Use Directive and other requirements to support the safe use of amenity pesticides.
Copies of the booklet will be available from all the major manufacturers or can be pre-ordered in advance from the Crop Protection Association (contact details below).
For further information contact:
Richard Minton, Secretary, Crop Protection Association Amenity Group
T: 01386 861165