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The Latest: Environmentalist blasts new pesticide guidelines

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on California’s recommended new restrictions on a widely used pesticide blamed for harming the brains of babies.(all times local):

11:15 a.m.

An environmental group is blasting new recommendations by California regulators to curb a widely used pesticide blamed for harming the brains of babies.

The Pesticide Action Network says the state’s recommended rules for chlorpyrifos (klohr-PY’-rih-fohs) are voluntary and have no weight behind them.

Spokesman Paul Towers says the state is passing the buck to local officials when it should take the pesticide off the market.

The Dow Chemical Co. pesticide currently used on about 60 different crops — including grapes, almonds and oranges — has increasingly come under fire from regulators, lawmakers and courts.

The state’s action is a temporary measure while it works to draw up regulations limiting use of the chemical. Those regulations may not be in place for more than two years.

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9:31 a.m.

California regulators are recommending new restrictions on a widely used pesticide blamed for harming babies’ brains.

The Department of Pesticide Regulation is issuing temporary guidelines Thursday for chlorpyrifos (klohr-PY’-rih-fohs) while it considers long-term regulations.

The department is calling for a ban on using the chemical in crop dusting, discontinuing its use on most crops and increasing buffer zones around where it’s applied.

The pesticide is currently used on about 60 different crops, including grapes, almonds and oranges.

The action comes as the Dow Chemical Co. pesticide is increasingly under fire.

A federal appeals court in August ruled the Trump administration endangered public health by keeping the pesticide on the market despite extensive evidence showing harm to babies.

Hawaii passed legislation in June to ban its use.

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