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PT04 Water Quality Monitoring
(PT065) Pesticides in the Turtle Creek Watershed of Western PA.
Ganser, L1, Falconer, R1, 1 Chatham College, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
ABSTRACT- Pesticide usage is widespread in the United States, leading to increasing concern as to possible adverse effects on human health and potential risk to aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Previous studies have found pesticides to be widespread in streams and ground water nationwide. The lack of information on acceptable concentrations and questions about the effects of applied pesticides necessitates further study of pesticides in natural waters. For this project, groundwater, surface water, sediments and air were analyzed in the Turtle Creek watershed in western Pennsylvania to determine concentrations and enantiomeric fractions of chiral pesticides. Enantiomer signatures, in combination with concentrations and other data, were used to gain insight into the sources, transport and fate of pesticides applied to the watershed. The samples were tested for a variety of pesticides, including past use and present use chiral pesticides. Five sites were chosen in the watershed with multiple samples taken from each site. Ground water samples were collected as close to surface water samples as possible. Sediments were collected in the same location as surface waters. Air samples were taken from nearby to determine the importance of atmospheric transport. Pesticides were found at varying concentrations in the various media. Levels found were typical for the type of watershed and level of agricultural activity. Chiral analysis showed enantioselective degradation of chiral pesticides had occurred. The importance of air transport of pesticides was studied by looking at differences in enantiomer signatures and concentrations between the various media.
Key words: surface waters, pesticides, air, chiral
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