AGRICULTURE: PESTICIDES

OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY --- BIOLOGY 301 --- HUMAN IMPACTS ON ECOSYSTEMS

Copyright 1998, Patricia S. Muir

Notes on pesticide use in agriculture follow. To help you find what you are looking for within this topic, notes are organized according to the outline below. When you have finished with a section, just click on ">>" to move to the following section in the notes, on "<<" to move to the preceding section, or on the box labeled "CONTENTS" to move back to the master directory for this home page. (Click on "Navigation" for more information on how to move about within and among these documents.)

Click on study guide to use the study guide covering agricultural issues and for additional references on this topic. Additional information related to pesticides, and alternatives to pesticides, can be found in the notes on sustainable agriculture.

You can click on NPIC to jump to the National Pesticide Information Center's Home Page. This network (jointly sponsored by OSU and the Federal EPA) provides science-based pesticide information to the public and professionals, including information on toxicity, health effects, environmental fate, cleanup procedures, and so forth. (If you visit this site from here, just use "Back" on your browser to return.) Another useful site for information about crop protection in the US is the Crop Protection Research Institute's national pesticide use database, pesticide links, commentary on pest management issues of the day, etc. In addition, you can find information on application rates for various types of pesticides in US agricuture at this USDA site.

The Oregon Environmental Council (OEC) mantains a site on which you can view fact sheets called the OPEN Files. These fact sheets contain information about pesticides in Oregon's groundwater, information on the Oregon Pesticide Education Network's (OPEN) Accountability Agenda, and effects of various pesticides on humans and on salmon.

Oregon was unique among the states in that we had a mandatory Pesticide Use Reporting System (PURS), which was enstated by a law that passed on a vote of 88-2. This law required detailed reporting to the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) on pesticide use: the compounds, application rates, purpose, locations and dates of application, and so on. At present, reporting requirments apply only to businesses (including farmers and exterminators) and also to government agencies (including Federal agencies who use pesticides on public lands in the state). ODA is also charged with developing a mechanism to track household use. legislation. Reporting of pesticide use under this law was not fine enough scale for you to know exactly what was happening in your immediate neighborhood -- data were recorded at the level of zip codes for urban areas and at the water basin level for rural areas. Due to budget constraints, however, the system topped taking entries, and will not do so again until 2013 (or later). 

TOPIC OUTLINE:

I. Background

A. History of use ("DDT story")

II. Trends in pesticide use

A. Use in the US

B. Global use

III. Are losses to pests decreasing?

A. Why not?

B. Pest control in natural systems

C. Interaction of pesticides with these controls

D. Genetic resistance to pesticides

E. Secondary pests

IV. Case studies

V. Negative feedbacks

VI. Why be concerned ?

VII. "Bandaids"

Page maintained by Patricia Muir at Oregon State University. Last updated Oct 22, 2012. Click "contents" at the bottom of this page to jump to the master table of contents for this BI 301 web site.

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