Management practices that reduce pesticide transport
|Meindert Commelin, Shaun Coutts, Jantiene Baartman, Isobel Wright, Antonio Ferreira, Gerard Velthof, Oene Oenema and Violette Geissen
|»Commelin, M. et al. 2020. Identification of most promising measures and practices: 1. Reduction of diffuse pesticide transport from agricultural land to groundwater and surface waters bymanagement practices. FAIRWAY Project Deliverable 4.3, 72 pp
For a description of the background issues concerning the agricultural use of pesticides and their contamination of drinking water supplies see
In this section of FAIRWAYiS we investigate the effectiveness of on-field management practices (including soil tillage practices, vegetative filter strips, application management and drift reduction) for reducing diffuse pesticide pollution by transport to ground and surface water resources.
- a synthesis of existing review papers,
- a meta-analysis of available data from literature and
- practice based knowledge from nine case studies across Europe.
Our main conclusions are:
- The driving factors for diffuse pesticide pollution are (i) the amount and type of used pesticides, (ii) water facilitated transport through or over the soil, (iii) erosion of sediment that causes transport of sorbed particles, and (iv) spray drift during application.
- Vegetated filter strips are the most clear measure to reduce overland transport and pollution by pesticides. Models are available to calculate dimensions and predict effectiveness for pesticide reduction.
- Tillage practices are extensively studied in relation to off-site transport of pesticides. The analysis shows that no-till does not provide less off-site transport than conventional tillage, and suggests even higher pollution in no-till systems under specific circumstances.
- On-site measures against diffuse pollution comprise only a small part of the available ap-proaches to reduce pesticide pollution. To obtain a sustainable system, input reduction, farm system redesign, point source mitigation and policy measures are essential to be taken into account.