Today, the Save Our Crops Coalition (SOCC) requested the Environmental Protections Agency (EPA) submit itself to National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) procedures, and prepare an environmental impact statement that considers herbicide use within the dicamba tolerant cropping system. SOCC opposes Monsanto and BASF’s efforts to register the new use of dicamba on dicamba tolerant crops, and has also requested EPA withhold registrations until effective measures are in place to mitigate the effects of non-target plant damage. As SOCC explained in a comment to EPA, the registration of dicamba on dicamba tolerant crops, without effective mitigation measures, would significantly increase the risk of unreasonable adverse effects on the environment.
SOCC’s mission is to prevent injury to non-target plants. SOCC has two objectives for dicamba new use registration process:
- First, SOCC seeks to encourage the use of only the lowest volatility formulations on dicamba tolerant crops. Monsanto has requested registration of the older, cheaper, and more drift and volatility prone Clarity dicamba formulation. SOCC regards additional restrictions on the use of Clarity and generic formulations of dicamba as necessary to protect against drift and volatilization damage to non-target plants.
- Second, SOCC seeks to ensure that, should dicamba be used, that it be used in a responsible manner. SOCC still regards additional mitigation measures to protect against drift and volatilization damage to non-target plants caused by this new pattern of use.
The statement of the SOCC Chairman, Steve Smith:
“Dicamba is one of the nation’s most dangerous herbicides for non-target crop damage. Monsanto and BASF have not offered sensitive crop growers effective measures to protect against non-target crop damage. Dow AgroSciences worked with us to deliver solutions to the problems of growers. We hope Monsanto and BASF will step to the plate and do the same.”
The Save Our Crops Coalition (SOCC) is a grassroots coalition of farm interests organized for the specific purpose of preventing injury to non-target plants from exposure to 2,4-D and dicamba. These herbicides are likely to be used far more extensively upon the introduction of new genetically modified crops tolerant to these herbicides. SOCC is not opposed to plant technology advances, particularly genetic modification. However, SOCC does oppose regulatory actions that would result in herbicide use that causes substantial injury to non-target crops and to the habitats necessary for their pollinators.