ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) Vice President of Environmental Protection and Restoration Lisa Feldt issued this statement today after CBF submitted comments to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) urging the agency to follow the terms and conditions of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) regarding the potential effects of the pesticide chlorpyrifos. CBF also requests that EPA acknowledge higher risks to Atlantic Sturgeon on the Eastern Shore, where farmland is in close proximity to tidal waters.
“This is a toxic chemical that is widely used on row crops in the Chesapeake Bay region and makes its way into Bay waters and its rivers and streams. Chlorpyrifos is an obvious threat to the Bay – and particularly to the blue crab fishery as well as the estuarine food web.
“Of the thousands of chemicals found in the sediments, fish, and water in the Chesapeake Bay, chlorpyrifos is one of the most concerning.
“Adult and juvenile Atlantic sturgeon in the Chesapeake are listed as endangered and, as NMFS notes, also are at high risk of harm from expected exposures to chlorpyrifos. Concentrations of the chemical in the Bay will reduce the spawning productivity and abundance of the fish.
“We urge EPA to ban the use of this chemical that will cause widespread harm in the Chesapeake Bay.”