Richard Fagerlund, San Francisco Chronicle, November 25, 2006
Q: Your answer to a recent question about black widow spiders includes mention of Dursban. What’s happened to this product?
A: Dursban, a chlorpyrifos pesticide, is no longer allowed in residential pest control. The following agreement between the EPA and Dow Chemical specifies the cases in which Dursban is permitted or prohibited:
Formulation of chlorpyrifos for home, lawn and most outdoor uses will stop effective Dec. 1, 2000. Formulator will stop sales for home and lawn use effective Feb. 1, 2001. EPA will not order products to be pulled from store shelves. All home use products/retail sales will be canceled (except childproof ant traps). All uses in or around existing structures will be canceled except spot termite treatments with gross visible infestations. Totally banned in 2002. Pre-construction structural use phased out in five years.
Nonresidential uses: Uses in schools, parks and other settings where children may be exposed will be canceled entirely.
Outdoor areas where it was determined children will not be exposed include only the following: Professional applications on golf courses retained at rates reduced by 75 percent. Use on road medians, industrial plant sites, nonstructural wood treatments including: fence posts, utility poles, railroad ties, landscape timbers, logs, pallets, wooden containers, poles, posts and processed wood products retained.
Indoor areas where it was determined children will not be exposed include only the following: ship holds, railroad boxcars, industrial plants, manufacturing plants and food processing plants.
Public health uses: Professional applications directly on top of fire ant mounds retained. Ultra-low-volume applications for mosquito control will be retained (evidently this was at the request of the CDC, but is normally not used).
Agriculture: Uses are retained; however, use on tomatoes is banned and tolerance levels on apples and grapes will be lowered significantly.
My video “Do-it-Yourself Pest Management for Home/Business” is now available. In the video, I show you how to use the products I recommend to control common household pests such as cockroaches, ants, pantry moths, mice, bed bugs and others. I do not use any liquid or aerosol pesticides. To get the video, visit my website.