Agricultural Economics Department


Date of this Version



Centner, T.J. Pesticide Usage Is Compromising People’s Health in the United States: Ideas for Reducing Damages. Agriculture 2021, 11, 486. agriculture11060486


Copyright: © 2021 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license


The development of synthetic pesticides has provided new tools for addressing troublesome pests. A review of parts of the registration process for pesticides in the United States identifies an outdated evaluation system that undervalues health damages. Registration fails to adequately consider co-formulants and effects of exposure to multiple chemicals. Frustration with failures to protect people and property from damages accompanying pesticide usage has led injured plaintiffs to resort to tort lawsuits to secure relief. However, litigation involves compensating injured persons after they are injured rather than preventing injury. A more proactive approach would be to prevent situations that injure people. This paper offers four ideas to reduce health damages accompanying pesticide usage. Slight adjustments to pesticide registration requirements can offer greater protection for people’s health.