No, this is a gross distortion of the permitting process. This commentary was written in response to the Lake Bomoseen Association (LBA) submitting a permit application to use ProcellaCOR. All herbicide permit applications go through a rigorous process, involving numerous departments and scientists.
In the specific case of the LBA’s application, we have learned from the Vermont DEC that when this application was received, these 15 internal experts, along with additional scientists in the Vermont DEC, reviewed, and provided comments and input on this permit application:
- two scientists from the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) Wildlife Division
- three scientists from the DFW Fish Division
- the DFW Public Access Area manager
- two DFW staff that oversee the Keho Camp
- two scientists from the Vermont Department of Health
- one scientist from the Vermont DEC Drinking Water Groundwater Protection Division
- the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation regional State Parks manager
- two scientists from the Vermont DEC Wetlands Program
- one scientist from the Vermont DEC Monitoring and Assessment Program who is an aquatic toxicologist and member of the Vermont Pesticide Advisory Council
The Vermont DEC and DFW created a framework in 2018 for permitting both herbicide and non-herbicide milfoil control efforts. This framework has been in place since that time, and was used for all ProcellaCOR permits issued, for which both departments determined that all the projects presented an acceptable risk to the non-target environment.
The Vermont DEC also engages the Vermont Department of Health to review submitted pesticide applications to determine if a finding of negligible risk to public health can be made for the pesticide project proposed. In the memorandum for this review, the State Toxicologist determined that the use of ProcellaCOR “…is not likely to result in an increase in the level of concern for public health.”
Finally, in late March of 2023, all three departments: Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation, Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife, and Vermont Department of Health officially formalized the agreed upon framework which you can see here: “Aquatic Nuisance Control (ANC) Individual Permit Application Internal Review Procedure”.
For a thorough explanation of the Aquatic Nuisance Control permitting process, see this presentation by the Vermont DEC entitled “ANC Permitting 101”.