Location: Soil Management Research
Title: Plastic Films for Soil Fumigation: Permeability and Emissions Reduction Authors
Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: August 20, 2009
Publication Date: August 20, 2009
Citation: Papiernik, S.K., Yates, S.R. 2009. Plastic Films for Soil Fumigation: Permeability and Emissions Reduction [abstract]. American Chemical Society. 77:137-138. Technical Abstract: Soil fumigation is being increasingly regulated to protect human and environmental health. Current California regulations are based on field data and, in effect, assume that use of a standard polyethylene tarp does not reliably reduce emissions. Plastic tarps used to cover the soil surface during soil fumigation vary in their effectiveness as diffusion barriers. A robust method to measure the permeability of plastic films is needed to develop management practices that consistently restrict fumigant emissions and improve policies regulating soil fumigation. We propose a simplified method to quantify film permeability using the mass transfer coefficient, which is a characteristic of a film-fumigant combination independent of the concentration gradient across the film. We will summarize a number of laboratory experiments to determine the mass transfer coefficients of polyethylene and low-permeability films to fumigant vapors and field studies to determine the effectiveness of plastic films in reducing atmospheric emissions of fumigants.