[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 159 (Wednesday, August 18, 2010)]
[Notices]
[Pages 51058-51061]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-20449]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

[EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0632; FRL-8840-1]


Web-Distributed Labeling User Acceptance Pilot

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: EPA's Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) is exploring a new 
initiative called ``web-distributed labeling'' (web-distributed 
labeling) that would make the most current version of some pesticide 
labeling available to users via the Internet. Through this Federal 
Register Notice, OPP is announcing its intention to conduct a web-
distributed labeling ``User Acceptance Pilot'' and is soliciting 
interest from entities potentially willing to participate in this pilot 
program. Through the User Acceptance Pilot, EPA intends to demonstrate 
how users could access labeling information using the Internet, thereby 
helping EPA determine whether the benefits of web-distributed labeling 
would be sufficiently appealing to users that they would be willing to 
visit a website to download and use labeling. This notice provides a 
brief description of a pilot website and invites participation in 
developing a pilot web-distributed labeling website by interested 
parties.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before September 17, 2010.

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments identified by the docket identification 
(ID) number by one of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.
     Mail: Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) Regulatory Public 
Docket (7502P), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania 
Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001.
     Delivery: OPP Regulatory Public Docket (7502P), 
Environmental Protection Agency, Rm. S-4400, One Potomac Yard (South 
Bldg.), 2777 S. Crystal Dr., Arlington, VA. Deliveries are only 
accepted during the Docket Facility's normal hours of operation (8:30 
a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays).

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Special arrangements should be made for deliveries of boxed 
information. The Docket Facility telephone number is (703) 305-5805.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michelle DeVaux, Field and External 
Affairs Division, Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental 
Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460-
0001; telephone number: 703-308-5891; fax number:703-308-2962; e-mail 
address: devaux.michelle@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. General Information

A. Does this Action Apply to Me?

    You may be potentially affected by this action if you provide 
pesticide labeling in an electronic format or are interested in 
developing a website to deliver pesticide labeling electronically. 
Potentially affected entities may include, but are not limited to:
     Data processing, hosting, and related services (NAICS code 
518210), i.e., establishments primarily engaged in providing 
infrastructure for hosting or data processing services.
     Web search portals (NAICS code 518112), e.g. companies or 
individuals that develop or maintain web search portals.
     Internet publishing and broadcasting and Web search 
portals (NAICS code 519130), e.g., internet search portals, Web search 
portals, and internet search Web sites.
     Persons who manufacture, distribute, sell, apply, or 
regulate pesticide products, including agricultural, commercial, and 
residential products (NAICS codes 32532 and 32561).
    This listing is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides 
a guide for readers regarding entities likely to be affected by this 
action. Other types of entities not listed in this unit could also be 
affected. The North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) 
codes have been provided to assist you and others in determining 
whether this action might apply to certain entities. If you have any 
questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular 
entity, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT.

B. How Can I Get Copies of this Document and Other Related Information?

    EPA has established a docket for this action under docket 
identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0632. Publicly available 
docket materials are available either in the electronic docket at 
http://www.regulations.gov, or, if only available in hard copy, at the 
Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) Regulatory Public Docket in Rm. S-
4400, One Potomac Yard (South Bldg.), 2777 S. Crystal Dr., Arlington, 
VA. The hours of operation of this Docket Facility are from 8:30 a.m. 
to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The Docket 
Facility telephone number is (703) 305-5805.

II. Background

A. What Action is the Agency Taking?

    Through this Federal Register Notice, OPP intends to identify 
parties potentially interested in participating in a web-distributed 
labeling User Acceptance Pilot.
    1. Overview. EPA regulates pesticide products under the authority 
of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). 
FIFRA establishes a pre-market review and approval system called 
``registration.'' With limited exceptions, no pesticide may be sold or 
distributed in the United States unless EPA has first issued a 
registration for the product. As part of the registration process, EPA 
reviews and approves the labeling affixed to or accompanying the 
pesticide product. Labeling describes how a pesticide may be used 
safely and effectively. Federal law prohibits the use of a pesticide in 
a manner inconsistent with its approved labeling. Many pesticide 
products are registered for multiple uses, and as a result, the 
labeling of the product is often very lengthy.
    Since 2007, EPA has been exploring the possibility of making some 
pesticide product labeling available via the Internet. EPA envisions a 
system that would make the most current version of pesticide labeling 
available to purchasers and users electronically through web-
distribution. For certain segments of pesticide products, portions of 
the labeling would no longer physically accompany the pesticide 
container. To obtain the pesticide product's full labeling, the 
container label would require a user to go to an Internet website. 
Users would be able to retrieve crop-specific labeling by entering the 
product registration number, the state where the pesticide would be 
applied, and use site (e.g., a crop) on which the pesticide would be 
applied. In response to this information, the website would provide 
streamlined labeling for the user to download that would include only 
the information necessary for the particular use requested. When fully 
operational, a web-distributed labeling system would also offer 
alternate delivery mechanisms for users who cannot access the Internet. 
Web-distributed labeling is being proposed initially as a voluntary 
option for registrants and would not be appropriate for all pesticide 
products. The goal of the web-distributed labeling initiative is to 
provide streamlined labeling that contains only the pertinent label 
information specific to the state where the pesticide is to be used and 
for the particular intended use, thus reducing unrelated directions by 
a significant amount. EPA expects this will improve label 
comprehension, readability, and compliance.
    EPA is interested in conducting a ``User Acceptance Pilot'' to 
research the extent to which users would accept a system requiring them 
to obtain labeling via the Internet. The specific goal of the pilot is 
to determine whether the benefits of web-distributed labeling would be 
sufficiently appealing to users that they would be willing to visit a 
website to obtain labeling for a pesticide product. The pilot would 
demonstrate how users could access labeling information using the 
website and would not involve the actual distribution to users of 
actual pesticide product labeling that would rely on the web-
distributed labeling approach.
    2. Background. After receiving a request to consider web-
distributed labeling from State officials responsible for regulation of 
pesticide products, EPA formed an internal workgroup to discuss the 
possible mechanics of web-distributed labeling and how it would 
complement ongoing label improvement programs. The workgroup conducted 
extensive stakeholder outreach to individuals and associations to 
describe the concept of web-distributed labeling and to solicit 
stakeholder feedback. Using the stakeholders' input, the EPA internal 
workgroup developed discussion papers to describe some of the details 
around specific elements of web-distributed labeling.
    In May 2008, EPA requested formal feedback on web-distributed 
labeling from the Pesticide Program Dialogue Committee (PPDC), a 
Federal Advisory Committee to the Office of Pesticide Programs. In 
response, a PPDC workgroup was formed to review and respond to the 
discussion papers developed by EPA. The workgroup includes 
representatives from user and grower groups; public interest groups; 
trade associations; industry; State, local, and tribal governments; 
educational organizations; Federal agencies; and others. From October 
2008 through October 2009 the PPDC web-distributed labeling workgroup 
met to discuss and provide comment on the papers. A full listing of the 
meetings and papers

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considered is available at: http://epa.gov/pesticides/ppdc/distr-labeling/index.html.
    In October 2009, the PPDC workgroup recommended a pilot for web-
distributed labeling that would allow users to test the functionality 
of one or several web-distributed labeling websites. The proposed pilot 
would be conducted with mock pesticide labeling and would not require 
any changes to actual pesticide labeling and any mock pesticide 
labeling would not be used to make an actual pesticide application. 
Based on the feedback received from the PPDC workgroup, EPA decided to 
focus the pilot on soliciting user feedback on the concept of web-
distributed labeling. The pilot is discussed further in Unit II.A.3 and 
4.
    3. Pilot specifications. The EPA is looking for entities outside of 
EPA to participate in the User Acceptance Pilot. An entity which 
volunteers to participate would develop a website from which potential 
pesticide users and others can retrieve pesticide product labeling 
information appropriate to a specific state and use site. The 
website(s) developed for the User Acceptance Pilot will allow users to 
do the following:
     Log onto an Internet-accessible website.
     Enter a product registration number or other product 
identifier for one of several pre-determined products.
     Select the relevant state/county in which the mock 
pesticide application would take place.
     Select the relevant use pattern(s) for the mock pesticide 
application to filter the labeling according to use pattern(s).
     View and download from the website the labeling 
appropriate for the identified product, use pattern, and state 
provided.
    In addition, the pilot websites would:
     Provide web-distributed labeling for at least three 
different products. Participants may use product labels of their 
choosing and/or, upon request, use mock labels provided by EPA.
     Place a prominent statement on each page of the downloaded 
labeling making it clear that the labeling downloaded from the 
website(s) was not legally valid for purposes of making a pesticide 
application.
     Offer users a mechanism for providing feedback on the web-
distributed labeling experience.
    Participants are not limited to creating a website that meets only 
the minimum specifications identified above, and EPA encourages 
participants to incorporate other tools and functionality as 
appropriate. Possible enhancements for a web-distributed labeling 
website are discussed in the Website Functionality discussion paper 
available at: http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/ppdc/distr-labeling/jan09/functionality.pdf.
    4. Pilot evaluation. As noted above, the purpose of the pilot is to 
obtain information about users' reactions to a system which requires 
them to obtain labeling from the Internet. The results of this research 
are important for EPA in deciding to move ahead with further efforts to 
develop such a system. Consequently, EPA not only expects participants 
in the Pilot to offer users a mechanism for providing feedback on the 
web-distributed labeling experience, but also encourages participants 
to summarize and submit to EPA the feedback obtained through the pilot.
    The following types of information would be useful to EPA in 
assessing the User Acceptance pilot.
    i. Paper labels - what users like and dislike about the current 
paper labeling on or accompanying pesticide containers.
    ii. Web-distributed labeling pilot website - the experience of 
using the website
     How users would access a web-distributed labeling website, 
e.g., whether high speed, dial-up, no online access;
     Ease of navigation (finding web-distributed labeling the 
user was looking for); and
     The user's overall experience using the website
    iii. Web-distributed labeling - The reaction to web-distributed 
labeling
     Ease in understanding web-distributed labeling
     Ease in following labeling that is partially on container 
and partially on web-distributed labeling
     Paper-based format or in the streamlined web-distributed 
labeling format preference
     User's impressions of the benefits of web-distributed 
labeling
     Potential impact on the user's compliance with labeling
    iv. Other potential features of Web-distributed labeling
     What other information, if any, the user would like to 
have that was not offered in the pilot, e.g., calibration instructions, 
pest identification guides.
    5. How to participate. Parties (including but not limited to those 
listed under Unit I.A.) interested in participating in the User 
Acceptance Pilot must respond in writing by September 17, 2010 to the 
person identified in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 
with an expression of interest to participate. EPA will schedule a 
meeting with all interested parties after EPA has reviewed the 
responses to discuss the User Acceptance Pilot and to answer any 
questions from potential participants. EPA's goal is to have all User 
Acceptance Pilot websites ready for users to test by October 15, 2010.
    Participation in the User Acceptance Pilot is voluntary; however, 
those entities who ultimately participate must agree to certain terms 
and conditions in order for EPA to evaluate the success of the website, 
including the following:
     The website(s) developed for the User Acceptance Pilot 
must be accessible to all potential users and at no charge to any 
potential user.
     EPA would post information gathered as part of the User 
Acceptance Pilot and provided to EPA to the public docket or made 
available to EPA to post to the public docket.
     Participation in the User Acceptance Pilot does not 
guarantee future involvement or participation in any web-distributed 
labeling activity, such as developing a structured labeling interface.
    Parties interested in learning more about participating in the 
pilot can find information at http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/regulating/labels/distribution/index.htm. Discussion papers related to web-
distributed labeling are available at http://epa.gov/pesticides/ppdc/distr-labeling/index.html. Participants are encouraged to review Web-
Distributed Labeling of Pesticides: Website Functionality (http:/www./
epa.gov/pesticides/ppdc/distr-labeling/jan09/functionality.pdf).

B. What is the Agency's Authority for Taking this Action?

    EPA is taking this action under the authority of FIFRA, section 
20(a). This section provides that ``The Administrator shall undertake 
research . . . with . . . others as may be necessary to carry out the 
purposes of [FIFRA].'' Here EPA is seeking to work with parties in the 
private sector to obtain information that will help EPA assess whether 
pesticides users would accept a web-distributed labeling program. This 
information is essential to understanding whether a web-distributed 
labeling system would improve users' compliance with pesticide 
labeling, thereby reducing risks to human health and the environment.

List of Subjects

    Environmental protection, Internet, labeling, pesticides.



[[Page 51061]]


    Dated: August 6, 2010.
Steven Bradbury,
Director, Office of Pesticide Programs.

[FR Doc. 2010-20449 Filed 8-17-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-S