USGS - science for a changing world

Environmental Health - Toxic Substances

Research Projects

Pesticide Contamination in Varied Pesticide-Use Settings

Red dyed water moving down Roberts Creek, Iowa.
Dye was used in a study of atrazine (a herbicide) degradation on Roberts Creek, Iowa, to determine the transport time of water as it moves through the study reach of the stream. The red color in the stream is rhodamine WT dye -- from the Agricultural Chemicals in the Upper Midwest Project

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New pesticides are developed continually, and increasingly, degradation byproducts of legacy and current-use pesticides are discovered. Information on the environmental occurrence of these chemicals is needed to evaluate their potential environmental and human health significance. This project activity has two-fold objectives: (1) develop methods to measure new pesticides and their byproducts in samples of various environmental media at concentrations relevant to assessing their persistence, transport, and fate; and (2) gather information on the environmental occurrence of these chemicals in sensitive and/or susceptible ecosystems near areas of common use of the pesticide, such as areas of similar land use, crop types, and/or farming practices. Pesticide-use studies in selected settings include:

Herbicides and other Agricultural Chemicals -- Midwest Cornbelt

Cotton Agriculture -- Southern United States

Agricultural Chemicals in Ground Water -- Plains, Georgia [Completed]

Transport of Herbicides in Streams and Shallow Ground Water , Cedar River, Iowa [Completed]

Program Headlines Related to Pesticide Research

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Page Last Modified: Monday, 02-Mar-2015 14:34:17 EST