Georgia Agribusiness Council: Dicamba Approved for Over-the-Top Use

Staff Report

Friday, October 30th, 2020

On Tuesday, October 27, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler joined members of Georgia’s Congressional Delegation, Ag Commissioner Gary Black, and dozens of farmers and agriculture organizations on the farm of Lee Cromley in Bulloch County to announce the agency will approve three dicamba formulations for over-the-top use for cotton and soybeans. Members of the Georgia Agribusiness Council staff were in attendance to see this significant and timely announcement made.

The dicamba registrations will begin in 2021 and run through 2025 for Xtendimax, Engenia, and Tavium. The administration noted that they reviewed 65 new studies and considered all the data in conjunction with experts throughout the agency and the private sector before making this decision.

GAC President Will Bentley stated that, “Ensuring Dicamba’s continued registration has been a huge priority of the Georgia Agribusiness Council since farmers and ag retailers were broadsided by the June 9th ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. We are pleased to see the EPA make this fact-based decision and applaud Administrator Wheeler for joining us in Georgia and acknowledging the work that has been done to mitigate drift issues here in the state. Dicamba is one of the most valuable crop protection tools our farmers have.”

Here are some additional details for the new registrations:

  • The required downwind buffer is increased from 110 feet to 240 feet,

    and up to 310 feet in areas where endangered species are located.

  • Applicators must use (and document their use of) available pH

    buffering agents to lower the volatility of dicamba tank mixes.

  • The use of hooded sprayers during application may reduce certain

    buffer requirements.

  • Applications will still require the same wind speed, sprayer speed and

    time-of-day limitations as the 2018 labels.

  • States will no longer be permitted to use Section 24(c) of the Federal

Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act to further restrict the federal label; they must instead work through Section 24(a) of FIFRA to do so, which requires individual state regulatory or lawmaking processes, a senior EPA official stated during Wheeler's press call. Section 24(c) will only be used for expansions of the federal label.