WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is extending the public comment period on two draft documents involving a petition from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY) seeking deregulation of an American chestnut variety modified for tolerance to chestnut blight. The first document is a draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) that examines the potential environmental impacts, and the second is a draft Plant Pest Risk Assessment (DPPRA) that considers potential plant pest risks.
On November 10, 2022, APHIS announced the availability of these documents for a 45-day public review and comment period, which was set to close on December 27, 2022. APHIS is extending the comment period for 30 days to allow interested persons more time to prepare and submit comments.
The Federal Register notice of the comment period extension and draft documents can be viewed now on the News page of the APHIS Biotechnology Regulatory Services website. Members of the public can submit comments through January 26, 2023, by going to www.regulations.gov and entering “APHIS-2020-0030” into the Search field.