Submitted to: American Chemical Society National Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: November 17, 2004
Publication Date: March 13, 2005
Citation: Yates, S.R. 2005. Reducing the environmental impact from soil fumigation with methyl bromide. American Chemical Society National Meeting. Paper No:CHED 1331, Symposium:Agricultural Chemistry in the Classroom: Solutions for Global Environmental Issues. American Chemical Society Annual Meeting, San Diego, CA, March 13-17, 2005. Technical Abstract: Methyl bromide (MeBr) has been widely used to control soil-borne plant pathogens for many agricultural crops, including strawberries, tomatoes, and nursery stock. MeBr's success has been largely due to its wide spectrum of activity (i.e., toxicity) against pests at many life stages, and its ability to rapidly permeate soils. Recently, MeBr has been shown to deplete stratospheric ozone and, as a result, was scheduled for phase-out in the United States in 2005. This has motivated research to better understand the environmental fate and transport of MeBr in soil, water and air systems. The purpose of this presentation is to summarize research on MeBr transport in soil as affected by soil reactions, and show how this effects volatilization to the atmosphere. The MeBr story offers many lessons that are valuable in developing effective and environmentally-benign fumigation strategies, and demonstrates that chemistry plays an important role in problem solving.