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OP 4.09 - Pest Management

These policies were prepared for use by World Bank staff and are not necessarily a complete treatment of the subject.
OP 4.09
December, 1998

This Operational Policy statement was revised in August 2004 to ensure consistency with the requirements of OP/BP 8.60, issued in August 2004.

Note:  This OP 4.09 replaces the version dated July 1996.  Changes in wording have been made in paras. 1 and 3 and footnotes 2, 3, and 4.  Further guidance for implementing the Bank's pest management policy is in the Environmental Assessment Sourcebook (World Bank: Washington, D.C., 1991).  Questions regarding agricultural pest management may be addressed to the Director, Rural Development.  

Questions regarding pesticide use in public health projects may be directed to the Director, Health Services.

1.  In assisting borrowers to manage pests that affect either agriculture or public health, the Bank
1supports a strategy that promotes the use of biological or environmental control methods and reduces reliance on synthetic chemical pesticides.  In Bank-financed projects, the borrower addresses pest management issues in the context of the project's environmental assessment.2
2.  In appraising a project that will involve pest management, the Bank assesses the capacity of the country's regulatory framework and institutions to promote and support safe, effective, and environmentally sound pest management.  As necessary, the Bank and the borrower incorporate in the project components to strengthen such capacity.
Agricultural Pest Management3

 3.  The Bank uses various means to assess pest management in the country and support integrated pest management (IPM)4and the safe use of agricultural pesticides: economic and sector work, sectoral or project-specific environmental assessments, participatory IPM assessments, and investment projects and components aimed specifically at supporting the adoption and use of IPM.
4.  In Bank-financed agriculture operations, pest populations are normally controlled through IPM approaches, such as biological control, cultural practices, and the development and use of crop varieties that are resistant or tolerant to the pest.  The Bank may finance the purchase of pesticides when their use is justified under an IPM approach.
Pest Management in Public Health

5.  In Bank-financed public health projects, the Bank supports controlling pests primarily through environmental methods. Where environmental methods alone are not effective, the Bank may finance the use of pesticides for control of disease vectors.
Criteria for Pesticide Selection and Use
6.  The procurement of any pesticide in a Bank-financed project is contingent on an assessment of the nature and degree of associated risks, taking into account the proposed use and the intended users.5  With respect to the classification of pesticides and their specific formulations, the Bank refers to the World Health Organization's Recommended Classification of Pesticides by Hazard and Guidelines to Classification (Geneva:  WHO 1994-95).6  The following criteria apply to the selection and use of pesticides in Bank-financed projects:
(a)  They must have negligible adverse human health effects.

(b)  They must be shown to be effective against the target species.

(c)  They must have minimal effect on nontarget species and the natural environment.  The methods, timing, and frequency of pesticide application are aimed to minimize damage to natural enemies.  Pesticides used in public health programs must be demonstrated to be safe for inhabitants and domestic animals in the treated areas, as well as for personnel applying them.

(d)  Their use must take into account the need to prevent the development of resistance in pests.
7.  The Bank requires that any pesticides it finances be manufactured, packaged, labeled, handled, stored, disposed of, and applied according to standards acceptable to the Bank.7  The Bank does not finance formulated products that fall in WHO classes IA and IB, or formulations of products in Class II, if (a) the country lacks restrictions on their distribution and use; or (b) they are likely to be used by, or be accessible to, lay personnel, farmers, or others without training, equipment, and facilities to handle, store, and apply these products properly. 
  1. "Bank" includes IBRD and IDA, and "loans" includes IDA credits and IDA grants.
  2. See  OP/BP  4.01, Environmental Assessment.  
  3. OP 4.09 applies to all Bank lending, whether or not the loan finances pesticides.  Even if Bank lending for pesticides is not involved, an agricultural development project may lead to substantially increased pesticide use and subsequent environmental problems.
  4. IPM refers to a mix of farmer-driven, ecologically based pest control practices that seeks to reduce reliance on synthetic chemical pesticides.  It involves (a) managing pests (keeping them below economically damaging levels) rather than seeking to eradicate them; (b) relying, to the extent possible, on nonchemical measures to keep pest populations low; and (c) selecting and applying pesticides, when they have to be used, in a way that minimizes adverse effects on beneficial organisms, humans, and the environment.
  5. This assessment is made in the context of the project's environmental assessment and is recorded in the project documents.  The project documents also include (in the text or in an annex) a list of pesticide products authorized for procurement under the project, or an indication of when and how this list will be developed and agreed on.  This authorized list is included by reference in legal documents relating to the project, with provisions for adding or deleting materials.
  6. Copies of the classification, which is updated annually, are available in the Sectoral Library.  A draft Standard Bidding Document for Procurement of Pesticides is available from OPCPR.
  7. The FAO's Guidelines for Packaging and Storage of Pesticides (Rome, 1985), Guidelines on Good Labeling Practice for Pesticides (Rome, 1985), and Guidelines for the Disposal of Waste Pesticide and Pesticide Containers on the Farm (Rome, 1985) are used as minimum standards.

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