Submitted to: American Society of Agronomy
Publication Type: Monograph
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/15/2009
Publication Date: 5/1/2011
Citation: Gish, T.J., Williams, J., Prueger, J.H., Kustas, W.P., McKee, L.G., Russ, A.L. 2011. Pesticide Movement. American Society of Agronomy. p. 183-197.
Technical Abstract: Pesticides generally include herbicides, insecticides and fungicides that play an important role in maintaining worldwide food and fiber production by controlling weeds that compete for water and nutrients or by eliminating pests that reduce yields. In the future, the role of pesticides and fertilizers in agriculture is likely to increase as marginal land is converted to agriculture to meet production needs. Furthermore, it has also been proposed that increasing food and fiber production by agriculture will be critical to maintaining political and social stability in many countries. However, pesticides can be toxic to humans and other forms of life at low concentrations, so future research will have enhanced scientific, environmental, and regulatory significance. To maintain productive and sustainable agricultural systems there is an immediate need to understand field-scale processes governing pesticide use and off-site movement. In this chapter, the primary principles and factors governing pesticide movement at the field-scale will be discussed. Specifically, pesticide movement will be evaluated by examining how pesticides are partitioned between runoff, groundwater leaching, and volatilization processes at the field scale.