How Is PBO Regulated?

Ant on flowerPBO is regulated in the United States and some other countries as a pesticide.  This term can be confusing, as it is regulated as a pesticide even though PBO does not have this property.  Synergists like PBO are chemicals that lack pesticidal effects of their own, but enhance the pesticidal properties of other chemicals.  However, the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), the law that gives U.S. EPA its authority to regulate pesticides, includes certain synergists in its definition of a “pesticide” and is thus subject to the same approval and registration as products that kill pests, like the insecticides with which PBO is formulated.  Pesticide registration is the process through which U.S. EPA examines the ingredients of a pesticide, where and how the pesticide is used (e.g. whole room fogger, crack and crevice, etc.), and the specific use pattern (amount and frequency of its use).

CockroachU.S. EPA also evaluates the pesticide to ensure that it will not have unreasonable adverse effects on humans, the environment and non-target species.  The U.S. EPA must register pesticides before they may be sold or distributed in the U.S. Registration is required for the pesticide itself, as well as for all products containing it.

The World Health Organisation recognizes the public health value of PBO when used in conjunction with synthetic the pyrethroids deltamethrin or permethrin used in mosquito nets (WHO, 1995, 2011, 2012).