milfoil

ProcellaCOR

ProcellaCOR Treatment Sampling Results

On the morning of June 29, 2024, NYS licensed aquatic herbicide contractor SOLitude Lake Management conducted the NYS DEC and NYS APA approved ProcellaCOR aquatic herbicide treatments in both Blairs Bay and Jelliffe-Knight Bays in northern Lake George to control invasive Eurasian watermilfoil.   

The permitted application area for Blairs Bay is 4-acres, and a total of 4.2 gallons was applied over that area for a concentration of 7.7 parts per billion. The permitted application area for Sheep Meadow Bay is 3.6-acres, and a total of 4.7 gallons was used over that area for a concentration of 7.7 parts per billion.  For reference, one part per billion equates to one drop in a large swimming pool.

Studied by the US EPA, Canada, the European Union, and every state in the continental US, ProcellaCOR is an aquatic plant growth hormone that has no impact on human or ecological health, and breaks down within hours following application.  

Per EPA and NYS product registration:

  • There are no drinking water restrictions following application.  ProcellaCOR is authorized and has been used in public drinking water supplies many times.
  • There are no swimming restrictions following application.
  • There are no fishing restrictions following application.
  • There are no lawn irrigation restrictions.

The Commission will conduct considerable follow-up study of the two demonstration sites, including videography of the treatment areas 30 days and 60 days after treatment, and a comprehensive aquatic vegetation survey of these sites as well in August.  This information will be made publicly available and will inform the Commission and our partners about the efficacy of these efforts and potential future invasive milfoil control projects.

click here for Sampling results information

Overview

The Lake George Park Commission is the New York State agency charged with the prevention and management of invasive species in Lake George. The Commission has been managing the invasive plant Eurasian watermilfoil since the early 1990’s in dozens of sites throughout the lake, through various methods and with varying success. The primary management method of milfoil management on Lake George is ‘Diver Assisted Suction Harvesting’, which consists of a diver hand pulling each plant by the roots and putting those plants into a suction tube for transport up to a topside boat. This method, while effective, can be difficult in areas that are rocky and in areas that are very dense.

 

In 2017, the Environmental Protection Agency approved a next-generation aquatic herbicide called ProcellaCOR EC, that selectively targets milfoil and is applied at staggeringly low dosage rates (5-7 parts per billion). This new aquatic herbicide has no drinking water impacts, no contact recreation impacts, and has no impacts upon fish or other aquatic life. The NYS Department of Environmental Conservation approved this aquatic herbicide in 2019, and it has been applied in 30 lakes in New York State to date and more than 100 throughout the Northeast, all with tremendous success and no negative impacts identified. 

 

The Commission has engaged highly experienced SOLitude Lake Management and obtained permits to undertake two small one-time treatments (four-acres each) in Lake George. The first site is in Blairs Bay in Glenburnie in northern Lake George, and the other site is on the north side of Hulett's Landing in Sheep Meadow Bay. The Commission has held several public outreach meetings with local homeowners, town officials and other interested lake associations to discuss this exciting new tool to manage and perhaps even eliminate this invasive species from long-standing problem areas in Lake George.

 

For more information on the Commission's historical milfoil management efforts, visit: https://lgpc.ny.gov/invasive-species-management

 

NYS DEC Statement Regarding ProcellaCOR

New York State is a national leader in emerging contaminant response and pesticide regulation, and in particular DEC conducts extensive science-based reviews of aquatic pesticide products prior to approval for use in New York State to ensure these products are fully protective of public health and the environment. The product must first be registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) before being submitted to DEC and the New York State Department of Health (DOH) for a stringent review, as mandated by law.

 

DEC experts’ review of ProcellaCOR’s active ingredient, florpyrauxifen-benzyl, with DOH, and EPA have not identified any concerns regarding the toxicity or persistence of florpyrauxifen-benzyl when used as labeled in the ProcellaCOR EC product. New York State approved its registration in 2019. EPA’s review of current federally registered pesticides found “no pesticide active or inert ingredients with structures similar to prominent PFAS such as PFOS, PFOA, and GenX.”

 

DEC permitting decisions will continue to be guided by the State’s stringent pesticide regulations and approved registrations

PFAS in Pesticides - Interim Report to the Legislature - MN Dept. of Agriculture

As you may have seen, there have been several very recent social media posts, email pieces and press releases from the LGA regarding ProcellaCOR being a ‘forever chemical’ or PFAS, based on an interim report from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture to the Minnesota Legislature on 2/1/24 (listed below in the Science & Approvals section).  We have been reaching out to regulatory and industry experts on this topic for clarification, please see a quick summary of our current findings below.  We will continue to research this topic and post scientifically accurate information on our website once collated.

ProcellaCOR aquatic herbicide is not a ‘Forever Chemical’ (PFAS).  The US Environmental Protection Agency does not classify ProcellaCOR as PFAS based on its chemical structure, and the regulatory science and evaluations validates that it does not have the characteristics of long environmental persistence and toxicity risks common to long-chain PFAS. 

Why is this topic in the news?  Under a new Minnesota law, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) was required to generate a report and issue a preliminary list of PFAS pesticides active ingredients (interim report attached, final report is due in 2025 after consultation with EPA). 

Florpyrauxifen-benzyl, the active ingredient in ProcellaCOR, is included on the MDA preliminary list simply because they are using the broadest interpretation of their definition of PFAS (much broader than any other regulatory definition, which classifies any active ingredient containing a fluorine molecule as PFAS, regardless of its environmental persistence or toxicity characteristics.

From the MDA report (page 4): “The definition of PFAS in Minnesota Law (Minn. Stat. 18B.01 subd. 15(c)) is the broadest definition in regulatory use. It categorizes more chemicals as PFAS than the definitions used by EPA, the European Chemicals Agency, and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. The MDA identified 95 pesticide active ingredients registered in Minnesota (as of June 2023) that would be considered PFAS under the Minnesota definition. By comparison, approximately six active ingredients registered in Minnesota would be PFAS under the EPA Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT) definition.”   

While Minnesota’s new definition of PFAS classifies 95 pesticide active ingredients as PFAS, most of those pesticides do not have the characteristics of “forever chemicals”.  MDA acknowledges that it makes no distinction between long-chain PFAS such as PFOA and PFOS that have long persistence in the environment, and pesticide active ingredients that have been through many years of development and rigorous regulatory review by EPA to ensure safety for humans, wildlife, and the environment. 

As an example described in the MN report, under Minnesota’s new definition, Prozac, one of the most widely used medicines on the market will be classified as a PFAS.  The report acknowledges the challenges it has created with this new definition.

For many chemicals more broadly in the PFAS class, the potential risks are simply unknown. However, by contrast, a substantial amount of information is available regarding pesticides and their risks to human health and the environment because of rigorous EPA registration requirements (also noted in the report).

Further, florpyrauxifen-benzyl (ProcellaCOR EC), has been granted a tolerance exemption on all food commodities from US EPA because of its non-toxic safety profile for use on and around food and feed-use sites, including the use of irrigation water for food crops previously treated with ProcellaCOR aquatic herbicides.    

Finally, NY has aggressively regulated certain long-chain PFAS compounds like PFOA and PFOS because we know they persist in the environment and in our bodies and can cause us harm. ProcellaCOR is chemically nothing like those compounds, it’s been exhaustively studied, and the research makes clear it doesn’t persist in the environment, doesn’t bioaccumulate, and poses no risk to non-target organisms, including humans.  

As we gather more information from regulatory partners, we will provide it to you.

Frequently Asked Questions

This document provides answers to some of the most common questions regarding ProcellaCOR and it's potential limited use in Lake George.

Look TV Interview 3/20/23

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A video of Executive Director Dave Wick's interview with Look TV from March 20, 2023
Look TV Interview 3-20-2023

ProcellaCOR Discussion with Hulett's Residents - 2/16/23

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Video recording of Informational Discussion with Hulett's Residents 2/16/23

Response to LGA Comments

The Lake George Park Commission is the New York State agency charged with the long-term protection of Lake George and its many users. The Commission is responsible for proper invasive species management, including Eurasian watermilfoil control, which it has been conducting for more than 30 years. It is incumbent upon any management agency to evaluate all available tools to help address any particular issue, including invasive species management. The Commission has spent more than 12 months learning about and evaluating a next-generation aquatic herbicide known as ProcellaCOR, which has been scientifically studied for many years and ultimately approved by US Environmental Protection Agency, the NYS Department of Health and the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. This aquatic herbicide has no public health impacts, no drinking water impacts, and no negative ecological impacts except for eliminating this invasive species. Hundreds of waterbodies in the Northeast (including Glen Lake, Saratoga Lake and lakes that are used as drinking water supplies) have utilized this herbicide tremendously successfully, and the Commission has worked very publicly to advance two demonstration projects for use in year 2022. Considerable information regarding this herbicide and the proposed project are on the Commission website.

 

Unfortunately, there has been considerable misinformation regarding this aquatic herbicide and its intended use on Lake George, which has been sent out to thousands of residents around the lake by the new Lake George Association leadership in concert with the Lake George Waterkeeper. The Commission, as a New York State agency, has a responsibility to provide only accurate and scientifically valid information. Towards that effort, the Commission has reviewed the association’s comments, and has provided informed, scientifically-backed responses to each of the statements.

 

Pertinent information may be found in the document below.

ProcellaCOR Meetings

Science & Approvals

Lake George Application Materials