The EPA recently approved a conditional registration for an antimicrobial pesticide product containing nanosilver for use on textiles, including clothing and bedsheets.
This is the first nanosilver product registered for use as a pesticide under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (“FIFRA”).
EPA indicated that its review of the nature of use, methods and rates of application, and potential exposure levels did not indicate an unreasonable adverse effect on the environment or public health.
The product manufacturer will be required to conduct a number of additinal studies during the period of conditional registration, including toxicity tests and stability tests to determine if nanosilver breaks away from the pesticide or textiles treated with the pesticide. All testing must be completed during the next four years.
The Natural Resources Defense Council (“NRDC”) filed a lawsuitto block the conditional registration of the antimicrobial nanosilver product (Natural Resources Defense Council v. EPA, 9th. Cir., No. 12-70268, 1/26/12). The NRDC claims that more testing is needed to study nanosilver’s effects on human health and the environment.
The EPA notice of conditional registration is available here: