The maker of a popular pesticide under review by the Environmental Protection Agency has hired the Podesta Group to lobby the agency.
The EPA is reviewing Atrazine, a commonly used weedkiller made by Syngenta Crop Protection, Inc. Environmental groups have raised questions about the presence of Atrazine in drinking water and the environment. In response, the EPA "determined it appropriate to consider the new research and to ensure that our regulatory decisions about atrazine protect public health," Dale Kemery, a spokesman for the EPA, said in an e-mail.
Kemery said the agency is seeking advice from a scientific advisory panel, including asking the panel to review the pesticide's potential effects on amphibians and aquatic ecosystems.
The Podesta Group filed disclosure documents listing Syngenta as a client last week, but the registration shows the lobbying firm's representation dates back to June 29. A spokeswoman for the firm confirmed that the firm will be lobbying the EPA. The six-lobbyist team includes Hewitt Strange, a former director of congressional affairs at the National Mining Association, as well as Melissa Merz, a former staffer to Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and others, and firm head Tony Podesta.