Importation of Dianthus spp. From Kenya, 17587-17589 [2021-06947]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 63 / Monday, April 5, 2021 / Notices and (4) APHIS’ NEPA Implementing Procedures (7 CFR part 372). Done in Washington, DC, this 31st day of March 2021. Michael Watson, Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. [FR Doc. 2021–06978 Filed 4–2–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–34–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service [Docket No. APHIS–2018–0068] Importation of Dianthus spp. From Kenya Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: We are notifying the public that we are updating the U.S. Department of Agriculture Plants for Planting Manual to allow the importation of Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya without postentry quarantine, subject to certain conditions. We are taking this action in response to a request from this country and after determining that the cuttings can be imported, under certain conditions, without resulting in the introduction into, or the dissemination within, the United States of a plant pest. DATES: The changes to the entry conditions will be applicable on April 5, 2021. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Lydia E. Colo´n, Senior Regulatory Policy Specialist, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road, Unit 133, Riverdale, MD 20737–1236; (301) 851–2302. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Background Under the regulations in ‘‘Subpart H—Plants for Planting’’ (7 CFR 319.37– 1 through 319.37–23, referred to below as the regulations), the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits or restricts the importation of plants for planting (including living plants, plant parts, seeds, and plant cuttings) to prevent the introduction of quarantine pests into the United States. Quarantine pest is defined in § 319.37–2 as a plant pest or noxious weed that is of potential economic importance to the United States and not yet present in the United States, or present but not widely distributed and being officially controlled. In accordance with § 319.37– VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:23 Apr 02, 2021 Jkt 253001 20, APHIS may impose quarantines and other restrictions on the importation of specific types of plants for planting. These restrictions are listed in the USDA Plants for Planting Manual.1 In a final rule 2 published in the Federal Register on March 19, 2018 (83 FR 11845–11867, Docket No. APHIS– 2008–0011), and effective on April 18, 2018, we amended the regulations so that restrictions on the importation of certain types of plants for planting would be included in the USDA Plants for Planting Manual instead of the regulations, meaning that changes to specific restrictions on plants for planting are no longer made through rulemaking. Under § 319.37–20, if APHIS determines it is necessary to add, change, or remove restrictions on the importation of a specific type of plant for planting, we will publish in the Federal Register a notice that announces the proposed change and invites public comment. On May 9, 2019, we published in the Federal Register (84 FR 20323–20324, Docket No. APHIS–2018–0068) a notice 3 in which we proposed to make changes to the import requirements in the USDA Plants for Planting Manual for imports of Dianthus spp. (carnation) cuttings from Kenya by allowing the cuttings to be imported into the United States without postentry quarantine, subject to certain conditions outlined in a commodity import evaluation document (CIED). We solicited comments on the notice for 60 days ending on July 8, 2019. We received six unique comments by that date. They were from two horticultural companies, two national trade organizations who issued a joint comment, two State departments of agriculture, and a growers’ and landscape association. The issues raised by the commenters are addressed below. Two commenters asked that the risk management measures include trapping for lepidopteran pests using pheromone lures. One of these commenters expressed particular concern about the pests Helicoverpa armigera, Agrotis segetum, and Spodoptera littoralis. As stated in the CIED, APHIS will require that the Dianthus spp. cuttings are grown in a pest-exclusionary 1 https://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/ plants/manuals/ports/downloads/plants_for_ planting.pdf. 2 The proposed and final rules, supporting documents, and comments can be viewed at https:// www.regulations.gov. Enter APHIS–2008–0011 in the Search field. 3 To view the notice, supporting documents, and the comments we received, go to http:// www.regulations.gov, and enter APHIS–2018–0068 in the Search field. PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 17587 greenhouse that includes safeguards against pests such as insect-proof screening over openings and self-closing double or airlock-type doors. The risk management measures also require that the production sites have monthly inspections for lepidopteran pests for at least four consecutive months immediately prior to export. We are confident that these measures will sufficiently protect the cuttings against lepidopteran pests without the need for pheromone lures, which can attract pests over long distances and have the potential to inadvertently attract more pests to the production site. One of these commenters also requested that we include two arthropod pests, Chrysodeixis chalcites and Lobesia botrana, both moths, in our considerations. Both of these pests are addressed in the CIED. Chrysodeixis chalcites is among the pests specifically named in the risk mitigation measure of monthly visual crop inspections for at least four consecutive months immediately prior to export. Lobesia botrana is listed in a table of additional Dianthus spp. pests present in Kenya, but with a note that Dianthus spp. is an exempted host from domestic quarantine regulations within the United States for the movement of Lobesia botrana host material as it has been determined not to pose a risk of spreading Lobesia botrana. For the sake of consistency with domestic regulations, we did not propose mitigations for Lobesia botrana for the importation of Dianthus spp. plants for planting from Kenya without postentry quarantine. The commenter also requested that the risk management measures include inspecting the soil around the plants for Agrotis segetum, a moth, and inspecting the stems for boreholes as well as cutting open a percentage of stems to check for Epichoristodes acerbella, a moth. APHIS will emphasize in the operational workplan that visual inspections should include an examination of the soil and an inspection of stems for boreholes. However, because the plant articles in question are cuttings, and therefore not likely to have stems sufficient to support borers, we do not believe stipulating the cutting open of stems to be necessary. One commenter expressed concern about the importation of Dianthus spp. from Kenya introducing strains of Ralstonia solanacearum. Dianthus spp. is not known to be a host of Ralstonia solanacearum. E:\FR\FM\05APN1.SGM 05APN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 17588 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 63 / Monday, April 5, 2021 / Notices One commenter asked about APHIS’ objective in lifting the postentry quarantine. APHIS has the authority to impose restrictions on the importation of specific types of plants for planting when such restrictions are necessary to effectively mitigate the risk of introducing quarantine pests into the United States. After receiving a request from Kenya to allow for the importation of Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya without postentry quarantine, APHIS determined that the systems approach outlined in the CIED would successfully mitigate the associated plant pest risk, therefore eliminating the need for the postentry quarantine restriction. The commenter also expressed general concern that the risk management procedures would not guarantee that Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya would arrive to the United States free from pests and would not pose a risk to United States agriculture. After completing a comprehensive evaluation, APHIS believes that the pest risk will be sufficiently mitigated by the risk management measures outlined in the CIED. These measures are consistent with the measures regarding Dianthus spp. cutting exports to the United States taken by the national plant protection organizations (NPPOs) of Great Britain and the Netherlands, the two countries that are currently exempted from the postentry quarantine requirement for Dianthus spp. if certain conditions are met. The commenter asked about the prevalence of viruses in Kenya compared to their prevalence in the United States and the extent to which this posed an agricultural risk. The CIED listed two viruses among the pests of concern for Dianthus spp., carnation etched ring virus (CERV) and carnation necrotic fleck virus. CERV is found worldwide, including in the United States, but has not been reported to occur in Kenya. Carnation necrotic fleck virus is present in Great Britain and the Netherlands with limited distribution in the United States (California), but is not known to occur in Kenya. The systems approach we outlined provides mitigation strategies to prevent these pests from entering the United States should they appear in Kenya in the future. The commenter also asked who benefits from this decision, what the impact on jobs would be, whether a cost-benefit analysis had been completed, and what need current domestic production is not meeting in the market that makes this change necessary. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:23 Apr 02, 2021 Jkt 253001 As cuttings of Dianthus spp. are already imported into the United States from Kenya and this change would not impact the current volume imported, this change should not have any economic impact or affect any jobs in the United States. Moreover, APHIS’ authority to place restrictions on imports of cuttings of Dianthus spp. from Kenya is based on the pest risks associated with such imports. The Agency does not have statutory authority to make decisions regarding restrictions placed on the importation of plants or plant products on the basis of economic or competitive considerations. The commenter asked whether other agricultural crops were considered in the CIED. The request from Kenya focused specifically on Dianthus spp. cuttings, and therefore no other imported agricultural crops were assessed. APHIS analyzed whether this change would increase the potential pest risk to domestic agricultural crops and found that a systems approach would be sufficient to mitigate any potential risk to United States agriculture. Finally, the commenter expressed concern about whether the NPPO of Kenya is qualified to abide by the systems approach, mentioning an instance of Ralstonia solanacearum found in plants imported from Kenya that caused damage to United States crops. The NPPO of Kenya is a signatory to the World Trade Organization’s Agreement on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures. As such, it has agreed to respect the phytosanitary measures the United States imposes on the importation of plants and plant products from Kenya. To ensure that these phytosanitary measures are met, APHIS will create a detailed operational workplan with Kenya. Additionally, all Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya will be inspected at plant inspection stations in the United States for quarantine pests. If consignments are determined to be infested, they will be subject to appropriate remedial measures. Therefore, based on the reasons outlined in the initial notice, the CIED accompanying the initial notice, and this second notice, we are updating the USDA Plants for Planting Manual to allow the importation of Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya without postentry quarantine, provided that the NPPO of Kenya enters into an operational workplan with APHIS and: • The cuttings are grown in a greenhouse that is registered with the NPPO of Kenya and that operates under an agreement with the NPPO. PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 • The NPPO maintains a list of registered growers and provides them to APHIS at least annually. • The production site incorporates safeguards to prevent the entry of arthropod pests including, but not necessarily limited to, insect proof screening over openings and self-closing double or airlock-type doors. • Blacklight traps are maintained for at least 1 year following construction of the production site, registration of the site, replacement of the covering of the production site, or discovery and repair to any rips or tears in the covering of the production site. • Any rips or tears are repaired immediately. • In the event of detection of quarantine pests in a production site, the site will not be allowed to export until appropriate control measures approved by the NPPO are taken and their effectiveness verified by APHIS. • Plants destined for export to the United States are produced in a production site devoted solely to production of such plants. • Parental stock from which the plants intended for importation derive are inspected and found free of the fungus Phialophora cinerescens, and indexed and found free of Carnation etched ring virus and Carnation necrotic fleck virus. • At least once monthly for the 4 months prior to the cuttings’ export to the United States, the production site is visually inspected for Spodoptera littoralis (cotton leaf worm), Helicoverpa armigera (Old World bollworm), Agrotis segetum (turnip moth), Epichoristodes acerbella (carnation tortrix), Aspidiotus nerii (a scale), and Chrysodeixis chalcites (a moth), as well as Phialophora cinerescens, Carnation etched ring virus, and Carnation necrotic fleck virus. • The production site maintains records regarding production, indexing, inspection, and pest management, and inspectors from the NPPO and APHIS have access to both the production site and these records. • Cuttings are accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration that the plants were produced in a production site registered with the NPPO of Kenya, and that the plants were grown under conditions specified by APHIS to prevent infestation with Phialophora cinerescens, Carnation etched ring virus, Carnation necrotic fleck virus, Agrotis segetum, Epichoristodes acerbella, Helicoverpa armigera, Spodoptera littoralis, and Aspidiotus nerii. E:\FR\FM\05APN1.SGM 05APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 63 / Monday, April 5, 2021 / Notices • Cuttings are limited to commercial consignments only. Paperwork Reduction Act In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the burden requirements included in this notice are covered under the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number 0579– 0049, which is updated on a quarterly basis. E-Government Act Compliance The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is committed to compliance with the E-Government Act to promote the use of the internet and other information technologies, to provide increased opportunities for citizen access to Government information and services, and for other purposes. For information pertinent to E-Government Act compliance related to this notice, please contact Mr. Joseph Moxey, APHIS’ Information Collection Coordinator, at (301) 851–2483. Congressional Review Act Pursuant to the Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et seq.), the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs designated this action as not a major rule, as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2). Authority: 7 U.S.C. 1633, 7701–7772, and 7781–7786; 21 U.S.C. 136 and 136a; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.3. Done in Washington, DC, this 31st day of March 2021. Mark Davidson, Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. [FR Doc. 2021–06947 Filed 4–2–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–34–P CIVIL RIGHTS COMMISSION Notice of Public Meeting of the Oregon Advisory Committee U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. ACTION: Announcement of meeting. AGENCY: Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) that the Oregon Advisory Committee (Committee) will hold a meeting via web conference on Friday, April 16, 2021, at 1:00 p.m. Pacific Time. The purpose of the meeting is to review report findings and recommendations. DATES: The meeting will be held on Friday, April 16, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. PT. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:23 Apr 02, 2021 Jkt 253001 Webex Information: Register online https://civilrights.webex.com/meet/ afortes. Audio: (800) 360–9505. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ana Victoria Fortes, Designated Federal Officer (DFO) at afortes@usccr.gov or by phone at (202) 681–0857. Any interested member of the public may call this number and listen to the meeting. Callers can expect to incur charges for calls they initiate over wireless lines, and the Commission will not refund any incurred charges. Callers will incur no charge for calls they initiate over land-line connections to the toll-free telephone number. Persons with hearing impairments may also follow the proceedings by first calling the Federal Relay Service at 1–800–877– 8339 and providing the Service with the conference call number and conference ID number. Members of the public are entitled to make comments during the open period at the end of the meeting. Members of the public may also submit written comments; the comments must be received in the Regional Programs Unit Office within 30 days following the meeting. Written comments may be mailed to Ana Victoria Fortes at afortes@usccr.gov in the Regional Programs Unit Office/Advisory Committee Management Unit. Persons who desire additional information may contact the Regional Programs Unit Office (202) 681–0587. Records and documents discussed during the meeting will be available for public viewing prior to and after the meetings at https:// www.facadatabase.gov/FACA/apex/ FACAPublicCommittee?id=a10t0000001 gzlwAAA. Please click on the ‘‘Committee Meetings’’ tab. Records generated from these meetings may also be inspected and reproduced at the Regional Programs Unit, as they become available, both before and after the meetings. Persons interested in the work of this Committee are directed to the Commission’s website, https:// www.usccr.gov, or may contact the Regional Programs Unit at the above email or street address. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Agenda I. Welcome II. Review Findings and Recommendations III. Public Comment VI. Review Next Steps V. Adjournment PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 17589 Dated: March 30, 2021. David Mussatt, Supervisory Chief, Regional Programs Unit. [FR Doc. 2021–06894 Filed 4–2–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Technical Information Service National Technical Information Service Advisory Board; Meeting National Technical Information Service, Department of Commerce. ACTION: Notice of open meeting. AGENCY: This notice announces the next meeting of the National Technical Information Service (NTIS) Advisory Board (the Advisory Board). DATES: The Advisory Board will meet on Monday, May 24, 2021 from 1:00 p.m. to approximately 4:30 p.m., Eastern Time, via teleconference. ADDRESSES: The Advisory Board meeting will be via teleconference. Please note attendance instructions under the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Elizabeth Shaw, (703) 605–6136, eshaw@ntis.gov or Chantae O’Connor at coconnor@ntis.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Advisory Board is established by Section 3704b(c) of Title 15 of the United States Code. The charter has been filed in accordance with the requirements of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.). The Advisory Board reviews and makes recommendations to improve NTIS programs, operations, and general policies in support of NTIS’ mission to advance Federal data priorities, promote economic growth, and enable operational excellence by providing innovative data services to Federal agencies through joint venture partnerships with the private sector. The meeting will focus on a review of the progress NTIS has made in implementing its data mission and strategic direction. A final agenda and summary of the proceedings will be posted on the NTIS website as soon as they are available (https://www.ntis.gov/ about/advisorybd/index.xhtml). The teleconference will be via controlled access. Members of the public interested in attending via teleconference or speaking are requested to contact Ms. Shaw at the contact information listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section above not later than Friday, May 21, 2021. If there SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\05APN1.SGM 05APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 63 (Monday, April 5, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 17587-17589]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-06947]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

[Docket No. APHIS-2018-0068]


Importation of Dianthus spp. From Kenya

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We are notifying the public that we are updating the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture Plants for Planting Manual to allow the 
importation of Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya without postentry 
quarantine, subject to certain conditions. We are taking this action in 
response to a request from this country and after determining that the 
cuttings can be imported, under certain conditions, without resulting 
in the introduction into, or the dissemination within, the United 
States of a plant pest.

DATES: The changes to the entry conditions will be applicable on April 
5, 2021.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Lydia E. Col[oacute]n, Senior 
Regulatory Policy Specialist, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road, Unit 133, 
Riverdale, MD 20737-1236; (301) 851-2302.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Under the regulations in ``Subpart H--Plants for Planting'' (7 CFR 
319.37-1 through 319.37-23, referred to below as the regulations), the 
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits or restricts the importation 
of plants for planting (including living plants, plant parts, seeds, 
and plant cuttings) to prevent the introduction of quarantine pests 
into the United States. Quarantine pest is defined in Sec.  319.37-2 as 
a plant pest or noxious weed that is of potential economic importance 
to the United States and not yet present in the United States, or 
present but not widely distributed and being officially controlled. In 
accordance with Sec.  319.37-20, APHIS may impose quarantines and other 
restrictions on the importation of specific types of plants for 
planting. These restrictions are listed in the USDA Plants for Planting 
Manual.\1\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ https://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/plants/manuals/ports/downloads/plants_for_planting.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In a final rule \2\ published in the Federal Register on March 19, 
2018 (83 FR 11845-11867, Docket No. APHIS-2008-0011), and effective on 
April 18, 2018, we amended the regulations so that restrictions on the 
importation of certain types of plants for planting would be included 
in the USDA Plants for Planting Manual instead of the regulations, 
meaning that changes to specific restrictions on plants for planting 
are no longer made through rulemaking. Under Sec.  319.37-20, if APHIS 
determines it is necessary to add, change, or remove restrictions on 
the importation of a specific type of plant for planting, we will 
publish in the Federal Register a notice that announces the proposed 
change and invites public comment.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ The proposed and final rules, supporting documents, and 
comments can be viewed at https://www.regulations.gov. Enter APHIS-
2008-0011 in the Search field.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    On May 9, 2019, we published in the Federal Register (84 FR 20323-
20324, Docket No. APHIS-2018-0068) a notice \3\ in which we proposed to 
make changes to the import requirements in the USDA Plants for Planting 
Manual for imports of Dianthus spp. (carnation) cuttings from Kenya by 
allowing the cuttings to be imported into the United States without 
postentry quarantine, subject to certain conditions outlined in a 
commodity import evaluation document (CIED).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ To view the notice, supporting documents, and the comments 
we received, go to http://www.regulations.gov, and enter APHIS-2018-
0068 in the Search field.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We solicited comments on the notice for 60 days ending on July 8, 
2019. We received six unique comments by that date. They were from two 
horticultural companies, two national trade organizations who issued a 
joint comment, two State departments of agriculture, and a growers' and 
landscape association.
    The issues raised by the commenters are addressed below.
    Two commenters asked that the risk management measures include 
trapping for lepidopteran pests using pheromone lures. One of these 
commenters expressed particular concern about the pests Helicoverpa 
armigera, Agrotis segetum, and Spodoptera littoralis.
    As stated in the CIED, APHIS will require that the Dianthus spp. 
cuttings are grown in a pest-exclusionary greenhouse that includes 
safeguards against pests such as insect-proof screening over openings 
and self-closing double or airlock-type doors. The risk management 
measures also require that the production sites have monthly 
inspections for lepidopteran pests for at least four consecutive months 
immediately prior to export. We are confident that these measures will 
sufficiently protect the cuttings against lepidopteran pests without 
the need for pheromone lures, which can attract pests over long 
distances and have the potential to inadvertently attract more pests to 
the production site.
    One of these commenters also requested that we include two 
arthropod pests, Chrysodeixis chalcites and Lobesia botrana, both 
moths, in our considerations.
    Both of these pests are addressed in the CIED. Chrysodeixis 
chalcites is among the pests specifically named in the risk mitigation 
measure of monthly visual crop inspections for at least four 
consecutive months immediately prior to export. Lobesia botrana is 
listed in a table of additional Dianthus spp. pests present in Kenya, 
but with a note that Dianthus spp. is an exempted host from domestic 
quarantine regulations within the United States for the movement of 
Lobesia botrana host material as it has been determined not to pose a 
risk of spreading Lobesia botrana. For the sake of consistency with 
domestic regulations, we did not propose mitigations for Lobesia 
botrana for the importation of Dianthus spp. plants for planting from 
Kenya without postentry quarantine.
    The commenter also requested that the risk management measures 
include inspecting the soil around the plants for Agrotis segetum, a 
moth, and inspecting the stems for boreholes as well as cutting open a 
percentage of stems to check for Epichoristodes acerbella, a moth.
    APHIS will emphasize in the operational workplan that visual 
inspections should include an examination of the soil and an inspection 
of stems for boreholes. However, because the plant articles in question 
are cuttings, and therefore not likely to have stems sufficient to 
support borers, we do not believe stipulating the cutting open of stems 
to be necessary.
    One commenter expressed concern about the importation of Dianthus 
spp. from Kenya introducing strains of Ralstonia solanacearum.
    Dianthus spp. is not known to be a host of Ralstonia solanacearum.

[[Page 17588]]

    One commenter asked about APHIS' objective in lifting the postentry 
quarantine.
    APHIS has the authority to impose restrictions on the importation 
of specific types of plants for planting when such restrictions are 
necessary to effectively mitigate the risk of introducing quarantine 
pests into the United States. After receiving a request from Kenya to 
allow for the importation of Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya without 
postentry quarantine, APHIS determined that the systems approach 
outlined in the CIED would successfully mitigate the associated plant 
pest risk, therefore eliminating the need for the postentry quarantine 
restriction.
    The commenter also expressed general concern that the risk 
management procedures would not guarantee that Dianthus spp. cuttings 
from Kenya would arrive to the United States free from pests and would 
not pose a risk to United States agriculture.
    After completing a comprehensive evaluation, APHIS believes that 
the pest risk will be sufficiently mitigated by the risk management 
measures outlined in the CIED. These measures are consistent with the 
measures regarding Dianthus spp. cutting exports to the United States 
taken by the national plant protection organizations (NPPOs) of Great 
Britain and the Netherlands, the two countries that are currently 
exempted from the postentry quarantine requirement for Dianthus spp. if 
certain conditions are met.
    The commenter asked about the prevalence of viruses in Kenya 
compared to their prevalence in the United States and the extent to 
which this posed an agricultural risk.
    The CIED listed two viruses among the pests of concern for Dianthus 
spp., carnation etched ring virus (CERV) and carnation necrotic fleck 
virus. CERV is found worldwide, including in the United States, but has 
not been reported to occur in Kenya. Carnation necrotic fleck virus is 
present in Great Britain and the Netherlands with limited distribution 
in the United States (California), but is not known to occur in Kenya. 
The systems approach we outlined provides mitigation strategies to 
prevent these pests from entering the United States should they appear 
in Kenya in the future.
    The commenter also asked who benefits from this decision, what the 
impact on jobs would be, whether a cost-benefit analysis had been 
completed, and what need current domestic production is not meeting in 
the market that makes this change necessary.
    As cuttings of Dianthus spp. are already imported into the United 
States from Kenya and this change would not impact the current volume 
imported, this change should not have any economic impact or affect any 
jobs in the United States. Moreover, APHIS' authority to place 
restrictions on imports of cuttings of Dianthus spp. from Kenya is 
based on the pest risks associated with such imports. The Agency does 
not have statutory authority to make decisions regarding restrictions 
placed on the importation of plants or plant products on the basis of 
economic or competitive considerations.
    The commenter asked whether other agricultural crops were 
considered in the CIED.
    The request from Kenya focused specifically on Dianthus spp. 
cuttings, and therefore no other imported agricultural crops were 
assessed. APHIS analyzed whether this change would increase the 
potential pest risk to domestic agricultural crops and found that a 
systems approach would be sufficient to mitigate any potential risk to 
United States agriculture.
    Finally, the commenter expressed concern about whether the NPPO of 
Kenya is qualified to abide by the systems approach, mentioning an 
instance of Ralstonia solanacearum found in plants imported from Kenya 
that caused damage to United States crops.
    The NPPO of Kenya is a signatory to the World Trade Organization's 
Agreement on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures. As such, it has 
agreed to respect the phytosanitary measures the United States imposes 
on the importation of plants and plant products from Kenya. To ensure 
that these phytosanitary measures are met, APHIS will create a detailed 
operational workplan with Kenya. Additionally, all Dianthus spp. 
cuttings from Kenya will be inspected at plant inspection stations in 
the United States for quarantine pests. If consignments are determined 
to be infested, they will be subject to appropriate remedial measures.
    Therefore, based on the reasons outlined in the initial notice, the 
CIED accompanying the initial notice, and this second notice, we are 
updating the USDA Plants for Planting Manual to allow the importation 
of Dianthus spp. cuttings from Kenya without postentry quarantine, 
provided that the NPPO of Kenya enters into an operational workplan 
with APHIS and:
     The cuttings are grown in a greenhouse that is registered 
with the NPPO of Kenya and that operates under an agreement with the 
NPPO.
     The NPPO maintains a list of registered growers and 
provides them to APHIS at least annually.
     The production site incorporates safeguards to prevent the 
entry of arthropod pests including, but not necessarily limited to, 
insect proof screening over openings and self-closing double or 
airlock-type doors.
     Blacklight traps are maintained for at least 1 year 
following construction of the production site, registration of the 
site, replacement of the covering of the production site, or discovery 
and repair to any rips or tears in the covering of the production site.
     Any rips or tears are repaired immediately.
     In the event of detection of quarantine pests in a 
production site, the site will not be allowed to export until 
appropriate control measures approved by the NPPO are taken and their 
effectiveness verified by APHIS.
     Plants destined for export to the United States are 
produced in a production site devoted solely to production of such 
plants.
     Parental stock from which the plants intended for 
importation derive are inspected and found free of the fungus 
Phialophora cinerescens, and indexed and found free of Carnation etched 
ring virus and Carnation necrotic fleck virus.
     At least once monthly for the 4 months prior to the 
cuttings' export to the United States, the production site is visually 
inspected for Spodoptera littoralis (cotton leaf worm), Helicoverpa 
armigera (Old World bollworm), Agrotis segetum (turnip moth), 
Epichoristodes acerbella (carnation tortrix), Aspidiotus nerii (a 
scale), and Chrysodeixis chalcites (a moth), as well as Phialophora 
cinerescens, Carnation etched ring virus, and Carnation necrotic fleck 
virus.
     The production site maintains records regarding 
production, indexing, inspection, and pest management, and inspectors 
from the NPPO and APHIS have access to both the production site and 
these records.
     Cuttings are accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate 
with an additional declaration that the plants were produced in a 
production site registered with the NPPO of Kenya, and that the plants 
were grown under conditions specified by APHIS to prevent infestation 
with Phialophora cinerescens, Carnation etched ring virus, Carnation 
necrotic fleck virus, Agrotis segetum, Epichoristodes acerbella, 
Helicoverpa armigera, Spodoptera littoralis, and Aspidiotus nerii.

[[Page 17589]]

     Cuttings are limited to commercial consignments only.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 
3501 et seq.), the burden requirements included in this notice are 
covered under the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number 
0579-0049, which is updated on a quarterly basis.

E-Government Act Compliance

    The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is committed to 
compliance with the E-Government Act to promote the use of the internet 
and other information technologies, to provide increased opportunities 
for citizen access to Government information and services, and for 
other purposes. For information pertinent to E-Government Act 
compliance related to this notice, please contact Mr. Joseph Moxey, 
APHIS' Information Collection Coordinator, at (301) 851-2483.

Congressional Review Act

    Pursuant to the Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et seq.), 
the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs designated this action 
as not a major rule, as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 1633, 7701-7772, and 7781-7786; 21 U.S.C. 
136 and 136a; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.3.

    Done in Washington, DC, this 31st day of March 2021.
Mark Davidson,
Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
[FR Doc. 2021-06947 Filed 4-2-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-34-P