April 3, 2013
A. Tilghman Hall, Bayer CropScience, 2 T.W. Alexander Drive P.O. Box 12041, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709.
Improvements to pesticide regulations must be based on sound science and clear documentation of all processes, procedures and decision-making involved. Data quality, including consideration of reliability and relevance, is key to the achieving a rigorous assessment. The tremendous scale upon which an ecological and endangered species assessment rests makes it critical to have a process that proceeds meaningfully and efficiently from the national to the local level, in a manner that involves all experts appropriately and at the proper point in the assessment process. Case studies have shown the feasibility of refining risk assessments and enabling informed risk assessment and management decisions, but disagreement can result if the diverse parties involved do not rely on the same dataset for assessment purposes. Consequently, agreeing on data quality standards, towards the goal of an agreed data set for a given assessment, is of paramount importance.