With reports that the mosquito-borne Zika virus is rapidly becoming endemic in the United States, now is the time for the federal government to remove the barriers blocking local experts from protecting and treating their communities, argues the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s (CEI) Angela Logomasini in a paper released today, Regulatory Hurdles Impede Zika Control.
Zika, the virus spread through mosquitoes which can lead to birth defects, has been spreading this year. Logomasini argues that federal lawmakers need to act by revising federal pesticide policies and other policies to allow development and deployment of pest-control technologies.
“There is no one-size-fits-all solution for a problem as complicated as Zika,” said Logomasini, senior fellow at CEI. “That’s why solutions need to start at the local level. Local vector control officials need freedom to apply situation-specific solutions, but they also need freedom to access and deploy a wide range of pest control technologies. Our current federal pesticide laws are a substantial problem because unscientific and excessively restrictive standards have produced bans and forced useful products off the market. It’s time for the federal government to get out of the way.”
Rather than focus on any particular product or approach to combating insect-borne illnesses like Zika, Regulatory Hurdles Impede Zika Control explains that policy makers should focus on removing regulatory hurdles that undermine local programs, such as policies that deny access to valuable pesticides or inhibit the development of new pest-control technologies.