Philippines suspends endosulfan
The Philippines’ Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has suspended the importation, distribution and use of the organochlorine insecticide, endosulfan. The main reason for the temporary ban has been given as the concern for the safety of pesticide applicators. It will stay in place until the country’s Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) issues an official directive on the use of endosulfan. The FPA banned the insecticide in 1993, but lifted it in 1995 to control pests that spread the pink disease ( Pantoea citrea) that threatened the country’s pineapple industry. The DENR has also expressed concern for the impact on the country’s fishery resources as endosulfan is categorised as toxic to aquatic organisms. The active ingredient came under public scrutiny in June 2008 when a ship carryings 10 tonnes of it sank in the Sibuyan seas.