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Agency Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program Washington, D.C.

Carol M. Browner
Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program Washington, D.C.

Prepared for Delivery
November 18, 1996

I want to thank Lynn Goldman for that introduction. It is a pleasure to be able to join all of you who have joined with EPA in a common effort to reduce pesticide risks and pesticide use.

The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program is one of a number of innovative partnerships through which we are making our system of public health and environmental protection more effective and more protective than ever before.

Over the past four years, EPA has more than tripled membership in our Partners for the Environment program, with more than 7100 companies now participating in common-sense voluntary programs like this one -- to prevent pollution, reduce pesticide risk, cut energy use, and reduce waste -- for the benefit of our health, our communities, our environment, and our economy.

The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program is recognized by Vice President Al Gore in his book on "Common Sense Government" as a very fine example of how this Administration is building strong partnerships with the private sector to get results that help all of us.

The organizations that have signed on to this program have made an important commitment: to promote the safest, most effective pest management practices available -- to do what you can to reduce the use and the risk of pesticides.

I have been pleased to see the progress of utility companies pursuing integrated pest management to control weeds on their property; federal agencies such as the Department of Defense committing to a 50% reduction of pesticide use; the golf course association educating their members; and many growers' associations educating their members about how to reduce pesticide risk and pesticide use.

The Clinton Administration is committed to working with you to promote research, education, and other efforts to find the very best, safest, and most effective methods of pest management. We are committed to have federal agencies lead by example in our own pest management practices. And we are committed to learning from the strategies you develop and incorporating successful strategies into our overall regulatory approach.

We have a long way to go. Reliable methods of safe pest control still need to be developed for many foods. Reliable measures of pesticide risk reduction need to be developed. And users of pesticides still need to be educated about the safest and most effective methods of pest control now available.

The new Food Quality Protection Act signed by President Clinton in August is a major step forward. It embodies the principles put forth by this Administration three years ago. It replaces the fragmented and inconsistent system of the past with a stronger, more protective, comprehensive health-based standard for all risks, all pesticides, all foods.

With that new law, our partnership becomes more important than ever.

We look forward to working with growers, food processors, and others who use pesticides to help us implement that law to assure a safe and abundant food supply.

I congratulate those of you who are leading the way and I look forward to seeing many others follow your lead.

I wish you a very successful workshop that will help all of you in developing and implementing your own strategies for reducing pesticide use and pesticide risk.

At this workshop and in the coming years, the Clinton Administration and EPA are firmly committed to working with you to protect our food supply, our communities, our health and our environment as we enter the 21st Century.

Thank you.

And now it is a great pleasure to honor our Charter Partners with Recognition Awards. Janet Anderson, our Division Director in the Pesticides Program, will begin calling you up to the podium.