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Abstract

This article argues that the existing maze of pesticide policies reflects the multidimensionality of side effects of pesticide use that cannot be addressed by uniform policies. Pesticide policies will improve as (a) economic literacy among natural scientists and policymakers increases; (b) economic models of pesticide use and agricultural production in general better incorporate biological consideration; (c) benefit-cost criteria are introduced to determine regulations of pesticide, and (d) policies are enacted that take advantage of new information technologies and enable increased reporting of pesticide use. Moving from bans toward financial incentives and flexible policies that will allow chemical use where the benefit-cost ratios are high will improve resource allocations.

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