EPA Proposes Uses of Methyl Bromide that Qualify for 2014/2015 Critical Use Exemption
The Environmental Protection Agency is proposing uses that qualify for the critical use exemption from the phaseout of methyl bromide and the amount of methyl bromide that may be produced or imported for those uses for both the 2014 and 2015 control periods. The EPA is also proposing to remove regulatory provisions related to the sale of pre-phaseout inventory for critical uses. Comments on these issues are due no later than April 21.
Under the Clean Air Act, methyl bromide consumption (i.e., production plus imports minus exports) and production was phased out Jan. 1, 2005, apart from allowable exemptions such as the critical use exemption and the quarantine and preshipment exemptions. The critical use exemption is designed to permit the production and import of methyl bromide for uses that do not have technically and economically feasible alternatives or substitutes and for which the lack of methyl bromide would result in significant market disruption. The proposed critical uses for 2014 and 2015 affect strawberry fruit, food processing (millers and pet food manufacturing facilities), commodities (walnuts, dried plums, figs, raisins and dates) and dry cured pork products.