In an attempt to promote free and open discussion of issues, The Agrichemical and Environmental News encourages letters and articles with differing views. To include an article, contact: Catherine Daniels, Food and Environmental Quality Laboratory, Washington State University, Tri-Cities campus, 2710 University Drive, Richland, WA 99352-1671. Phone: 509-372-7495. Fax: 509-372-7491. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
In This Issue
|News and Notes||The Value of Pesticide Use on Asparagus|
|Book on Minor Crops Published||Aldicarb Use on Potatoes|
|Available Reports||Pesticide Training Season Here|
|U.S. Pesticide Industry Analyzed in Report||EPA's Table II|
|Carol Weisskopf||Allan Felsot|
|Officially Unofficial||Washington Commission on Pesticide Registration|
|Pesticide Poisonings in Washington State||Federal/State Issues|
Enter this address carefully, paying close attention to punctuation and spacing (no spaces between parts of the address). Some readers may experience difficulties accessing the site. These are believed to be related to the Internet and to on-line services, not the web site. If you are having a problem accessing the web page, please inform Catherine Daniels (ph: 509-372-7495, fax: 509-372-7491, e-mail: email@example.com
Note: The address has changed for WSU Prosser and for Ellen Bentley,
WSU diagnostic plant pathologist. The county has changed the address for WSU Prosser and for Ellen Bentley from a route and box number
to a street address. That new address is WSU Prosser, Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center,
24106 N. Bunn Road, Prosser, WA 99350-9687.
Anyone involved in recommending use of pesticides, pesticide sales, representing growers or food processors is a potential beneficiary of the system. The system currently serves as the guide to registrations for the Oregon and Washington Departments of Agriculture and is the official list of what is and is not registered in the two states. The price of subscription has not yet been determined, but the fee will be on a cost recovery basis. For information on how to subscribe to the pesticide database, contact Catherine Daniels at 509-372-7492.
Source: University of Arizona Pesticide Newsletter -- Dave Baker
Poisonings in the United States are monitored through the Toxic Exposure Surveillance System (TESS), and are compiled by the American Association of Poison Control Centers.
Sixty-five poison control centers in 44 states and the District of Columbia, serving 83% of the U.S. population, or 216 million people, participated in the 1994 study. The report includes 1,926,438 human exposures of all types.
Of human exposures in 1994, 90.4% occurred at a residence. In 4% of the cases, multiple patients were involved in the exposure. Forty% of the cases occurred in children younger than three years of age, while 54% occurred in children younger than six years of age. In the majority of poisoning reports, children younger than six years comprised only 3.4% of fatalities, while 59% of poisoning fatalities occurred in individuals 20 to 49 years of age.
As for pesticides implicated in the poisonings, the breakdown is as follows:
fungicides were implicated in 1,347 incidents, herbicides in 8,262 incidents,
insecticides in 61,882 incidents, and rodenticides in 16,478 incidents.
The study found fruit and nut crop growers make up 65% of the total growers in the state, while organic vegetable growers comprise about 34% of the total.
Other findings in the report:
The assessment covered the three primary asparagus producing states of California (32,055 acres), Washington (25,000 acres) and Michigan (19,500 acres). Many aspects of crop production are common to the three states, with two important exceptions being harvest practices and end use of the product. Nearly 100% of California asparagus is produced for the fresh market; most of Washington asparagus is processed; and a simple majority of Michigan asparagus is canned, with nearly equal amounts sold for freezing or the fresh market.
There are significant differences in crop protection between the states. Michigan has greater disease pressure and significant asparagus beetle pressure during harvest. Asparagus aphid is not an economic problem in Michigan. Asparagus beetle is a major problem in Washington and California. Weed control is a major issue in all states, with each state having a somewhat different complement of weeds.
There are about 20 pesticides of consequence used on asparagus _ four fungicides, six insecticides and 10 herbicides. There are a number of pesticides that, if canceled, would have multi-million dollar impacts on the asparagus industry.
|Pesticide||Impact to state ($)||Total Impact($)|
Where data exist, information on production statistics, crop description, key pests, key pesticides, critical pest control issues, expert contacts and location of areas of production in the state are provided for each crop. For crops grown on a very limited basis, this information is often unavailable. For example, virtually no data are available on such Washington crops as bamboo shoots, chestnuts, sweet potatoes and faba beans. However, a surprising amount of information is included on a wide range of widely grown crops and the minor, minor crops such as evening primrose, crabapple, collard seed, pepino and edible watermelon seeds. Some degree of information is provided in the book for about 230 commodities.
Copies of the book have been provided to the Washington congressional delegation, state legislators, USDA, EPA, IR-4, state agencies, Washington commodity organizations and state and county specialists. Support for the development and distribution of the book was provided by the National Agricultural Pesticide Impact Assessment Program and WSU Cooperative Extension.
The book, at $30 per copy, may be ordered from the Washington State University Bulletins Office at Cooper Publications Building, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164-5912. Please request publication MISC 0181 and make checks payable to Cooperative Extension Publications.
I started this book just after I arrived in Washington in 1993, with the intention that it cover every minor use crop in the state. When I began, conventional wisdom was that the state produced between 70 and 100 crops. Writing a comprehensive book on the subject seemed possible at the time. Several months into the book, it became clear that the diversity of crops and the size of the undertaking were much greater than expected.
To make the project manageable, and given the amount of the USDA grant to complete the project (which was based on the assumption of fewer than 100 crops), I limited the project to minor use food, feed and seed crops. I drew this line, because these are the crops that require GLP pesticide residue data for registrations. This is a primary obstacle to registration, and it can be a formidable barrier; thus, these crops are most in need of attention.
One and a half years after its initiation, the book, expected to be used as a reference to Washington agriculture, is complete.
Besides misspelled words and minor errors that only became obvious to the author after publication, a potentially serious flaw in the book was quickly brought to my attention. The book is titled Washington Minor Crops and, thereby, implies that it covers all Washington minor crops. Although the implication is there, the book does not cover all crops.
Growers of the excluded crops want and deserve the same level of recognition.
I have not yet decided how to address this issue, but intend to resolve it
in the near future.
Return to Table of Contents
Rhone-Poulenc Ag Company, the manufacturer, intends to support the use by implementing a Temik brand Aldicarb Pesticide Potato Stewardship Program, beginning before the end of 1995. Growers and applicators who satisfy the stewardship program requirements will be able to apply the product to their potato fields in 1996.
As stated in the new label, applicators or growers intending to apply Temik to potatoes must first be qualified through certification training sponsored by the manufacturer. Additionally, the equipment used to apply the product must be certified by the manufacturer or its designee prior to the purchase of Temik.
Rhone-Poulenc will offer a program that provides an incentive for growers to purchase the positive displacement application (PDA) equipment necessary to apply Temik. Positive displacement applicators are a type of granular applicator that uses a rotor to regulate flow rate based upon rotational speed (rpm) and mass displaced per revolution (ounces or grams per revolution). PDA rotors must be driven by a ground wheel or forward speed compensated motor.
If growers are not certified and/or have non-certified application equipment, then they may not use the product on potatoes.
In order for growers or applicators to obtain certification, they must first attend a Rhone-Poulenc-sponsored meeting, at which they will be trained regarding label use directions, restrictions, environmental precautions, handling precautions and equipment requirements. Each attendee will become certified upon finishing the training session and completing a registration form. The trainee will retain one copy of the form. Training will be provided by Rhone-Poulenc and/or a company designee.
Because of the accuracy of positive displacement application equipment, its use is required. Prior to product purchase, the application equipment must be certified as functional PDA equipment by a Rhone-Poulenc representative or designee. Once the equipment is approved, it will receive a certification sticker.
Once growers or applicators have satisfied both the training and equipment certification requirements, they may purchase Temik NW for use on potatoes. Growers will be required to provide a copy of their equipment certification form to the dealer, in order to purchase the product. Non-certified individuals wishing to purchase Temik for use on a registered crop other than potatoes must first sign a form at the dealership stating their agreement not to use the product on potatoes.
Product Use: Label Directions, Restrictions and Precautions
Temik brand 15G NW (to designate Northwest) is a new label allowing use only on potatoes grown in Idaho, Montana, Oregon (except Curry County), Washington and certain counties in Nevada and Utah. This label also contains uses for dry beans and sugar beets in those states. The following information is taken from the label:
An at-planting application is recommended for best performance.
|Pesticide RECERTIFICATION Programs for Eastern Washington|
|Pullman||Jan. 8, 9|
|Richland||Jan. 8, 9|
|Spokane||Jan. 22, 23|
|Moses Lake||Jan. 25, 26|
|Yakima||Jan. 29, 30|
|Wenatchee (in Spanish)||Feb. 8|
|Pesticide RECERTIFICATION Programs for Western Washington|
|Fife||Jan. 17, 18|
|Kelso||Jan. 24, 25|
|Lynnwood||Feb. 6, 7|
|Mt. Vernon||Feb. 14, 15|
|Silverdale||Mar. 4, 5|
|Bellevue||Mar. 6, 7|
(5 credits per day)
|PRE-LICENSE Courses in Eastern Washington|
|Richland||Jan. 10, 11, 12|
|Pullman||Jan. 16, 17, 18|
|Yakima||Jan. 31, Feb. 1, 2|
|Spokane||Feb. 5, 6, 7|
|Moses Lake||Feb. 13, 14, 15|
|PRE-LICENSE Courses in Western Washington|
|Fife||Jan. 16, 17, 18|
|Kelso||Jan. 23, 24, 25|
|Lynnwood||Feb. 5, 6, 7|
|Mt. Vernon||Feb. 13, 14, 15|
|Olympia||Feb. 26, 27, 28|
The report consists of two sections. The first contains estimates of annual sales of individual active ingredients in the U.S. market. These sales estimates are organized by company and by market segment. The market position for the leading 18 companies is detailed in the second section of the report. Appropriately, the book contains two pages of caveats. The most important of these is that the report is based on a series of calculations by Gianessi derived largely from a scattered series of reports and several assumptions.
Total U.S. crop protection pesticide sales were estimated at approximately $7.2 billion annually (based on information from 1990 -1994). This estimate is 16% greater than a recent EPA estimate of $6.2 billion for 1993. Eighteen companies have annual sales of pesticides applied to crops in the U.S. exceeding $50 million. The top five companies account for 57% of all sales.
Of the 193 active ingredients commonly used in U.S. crop protection, 16 have annual sales of $100 million or more.
Pesticide sales by type are as follows: herbicides (65%), insecticides (22%), fungicides (8%) and other (5%). By crop, pesticide sales are corn (26%), soybeans (21%), fruits and vegetables (13%), cotton (13%) and all other crops (27%).
U.S. Crop Pesticide
|Rohm and Haas||96|
U.S. Crop Pesticide
U.S. Crop Pesticide Sales: Top-selling Active Ingredients
|Active ingredient||U.S. Sales (million $/year)||Company|
|Metolachlor (Dual)||451||Ciba Geigy|
|Imazethapyr (Pursuit)||438||American Cyanamid|
|Pendimethalin (Prowl)||152||American Cyanamid|
|Terbufos (Counter)||108||American Cyanamid|
|Imazaquin (Scepter)||105||American Cyanamid|
For feed commodities, the table from the Environmental Protection Agency includes the maximum percentage allowed in the diet for beef and dairy cattle, poultry, and swine. It also provides guidance on the acceptability of label restrictions prohibiting use as a feedstuff.
The Chemistry Branches in the EPA Office of Pesticide Programs' Health Effects Division have issued an update (September 1995) to the table that further revises an earlier revision issued in June 1994. Changes are described below.
In the June 1994 version, the following criteria were used to decide what feedstuffs are "significant" (i.e., for which feedstuffs does EPA require residue data and livestock metabolism and feeding studies).
1) The U.S. annual production of the crop (raw agricultural commodity) is 250,000 tons or greater and the maximum amount in the livestock diet is 10% or greater; or
2) The commodity is grown mainly as a feedstuff.
In response to comments, the Environmental Protection Agency has refined the criteria for determining the "significance" of feedstuffs for inclusion in Table II (September 1995). The additional criteria are as follows:
The amount of a commodity (raw agricultural or processed) produced or diverted for use as a feedstuff is 0.04% or greater of the total annual tonnage of all feedstuffs available for livestock utilization in the U.S.
Feedstuffs less than 0.04% of the total estimated annual tonnage of all feedstuffs available are included in Table II if:
a) The feedstuff is listed and traded routinely on the commodity exchange markets.
b) There is a regional production, seasonal consideration, or an incident history for use of the feedstuff.
c) The feedstuff is grown exclusively for livestock feeding in quantities greater than 10,000 tons (0.0015% of the total estimated annual tonnage of all feedstuffs available).
Using the above criteria for inclusion of feedstuffs in Table II, EPA expects to account for greater than 99% of the available annual tonnage (on a dry-matter basis) of feedstuffs used in the domestic production of greater than 95% of beef and dairy cattle, poultry, swine, milk and eggs.
Additional changes to Table II include removals and additions of crops, and redefinitions and reclassifications of raw agricultural and processed commodities and feedstuffs. Examples of such changes include:
EPA has also reevaluated the policy of allowing, as a substitute for data on a particular crop-pesticide combination, a label restriction prohibiting the use (or sale) of that commodity for feeding purposes. Criteria to determine whether a restriction of a commodity from use as a feedstuff could be allowed are:
1) The feedstuff must remain under the control of the grower (for example, byproducts of processing would usually not be under the control of the grower); and,
2) The crop must not be grown primarily as a feedstuff; and,
3) A label restriction should cause no economic hardship
EPA's view is that label restrictions should only be allowed on peanut hay, soybean forage and soybean hay.
... IR-4 Newsletter, Fall 1995
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We are accustomed to seeing results reported in parts per million (ppm), parts per billion (ppb), or parts per trillion (ppt). We refer to the pesticide, nutrient, metal or other compound we analyze as the analyte. The material in which we are looking for the analyte (water, soil, plant material) is the matrix.
The concept behind reporting concentration in ppm is simple _ there is one portion of the analyte for every one million portions of the matrix. The size of the portion is unimportant, because the ratio remains the same. It could be one pound of analyte per million pounds of matrix, or one ounce per million ounces, or even one foot per million feet. What matters is that the portions in which we describe the analyte are the same as those in which we describe the matrix. We can't describe one ppm as one foot per million ounces.
To avoid potential confusion when units such as ppm or ppb are used, it is necessary that the portions be described. The portions are usually weight per weight or volume per volume. One of the handy things about these types of units is that on a weight per weight basis, it doesn't matter if you are reporting one pound per million pounds or one ton per million tons. They are both one ppm.
If we test a boxcar of grain, we don't analyze the whole thing. We take a subsample, a small amount of grain representing the entire load. The results we get in the lab describe the boxcar. If we get one microgram analyte per one million micrograms of sample (one ppm), the concentration in the boxcar is also one ppm. No conversion is necessary, despite the fact that boxcars are described in tons and lab samples in grams.
Reporting results using ppm represents a concentration. We can also report results as amounts. If we report that the grain subsample has one microgram of analyte in it, the result we report will not be a concentration but an amount. There are times when reporting an amount rather than a concentration is the appropriate procedure. If we wished to know how much of an analyte a cow would consume in a normal day, we would use the concentration we determined in our grain subsample, figure out how much of the grain the cow would eat in an average day, and calculate how much of the analyte the cow would consume. These types of results would then be reported in units such as one milligram per day. For toxic compounds, this amount would be regarded as the exposure for the cow on a daily basis.
In the case of the grain and the cow, it may not be the concentration in the grain that is important but how the amount of analyte the cow consumes may affect the cow. To determine if the estimated amount is of concern, the next type of calculation that can occur is to express the results in milligrams of analyte per kilograms of body weight for the average cow.
Toxicity values are usually expressed in weight of analyte per weight of animal. We can look up toxicity data and estimate whether the amount of analyte the cow consumes is going to cause problems for the cow. This is only an estimation, as toxicities are usually reported for rats and rabbits and are unlikely to have been tested for cows. It is assumed that, in general, mammals will experience similar toxicities at similar exposures adjusted for body weight.
Even though toxicities are reported in weight ratios (milligram analyte per kilogram body weight), this is not a concentration. We do not grind up the cow and determine the concentration in the resulting hamburger (unless we are going to eat it ourselves). If we feed one milligram of analyte to an animal weighing one kilogram, the concentration is likely to be much less than one milligram per kilogram if we grind the animal up. Some of the compound is broken down during digestion, some removed by normal metabolic processes and some is excreted. These processes remove some of the analyte, and the removed portion is not available to cause toxic effects. It is not the concentration of the toxic compound in the animal that is important, unless the animal is in turn a food item. What is important is whether the amount of a toxicant the animal consumes is sufficient to cause toxic effects. So, if we are talking about food, either the grain or the hamburger, we report analyte weight per sample weight concentrations (ppm, ppb, etc.). When we discuss exposure to toxicants, we report exposure amount, usually per unit body weight and sometimes with a time factor thrown in (milligram analyte per kilogram body weight, milligram per kilogram per day, etc.).
Established pesticide tolerances are the concentrations of an analyte that are considered to be safe. These concentrations are extrapolated from the compounds' toxicities and average rates of consumption of the crop. It is not possible to directly regulate dietary exposure, as you cannot regulate the amount of a commodity a person consumes or the diversity of someone's diet.
Appropriate pesticide use generally results in commodities that are within
established tolerances. Market basket surveys test overall consumer exposure
to toxicants in a variety of commodities, and these results are frequently
reported as amount of a toxicant consumed per day. If these results raise
concerns, they are not used to regulate consumer eating habits but to adjust
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Imagine that these chemicals are part of the food chain. Consider a chemical in apples that is known to cause vomiting, diarrhea, ulceration, bleeding from intestines and circulatory collapse.
Would you be appalled if no government regulation could control this incessant manufacturing process? What if no law existed that was strict enough to keep these chemicals out of the food supply?
You then might ask, what are the ethics of a society that would allow such unmitigated irresponsibility? But our culprits here are not bound by codes of conduct and responsibility. Our imaginary world is not fantasy but part of natural processes in the biosphere. Our subjects are the earth's flora and fauna, producing through their metabolism chemicals that function to enhance their probability of survival and, ultimately, reproduction.
It has long been known that many organisms, especially plants, produce chemicals incidental to their normal energy producing biochemistry that function to ward off predators, protect seeds, or attract insects for pollination. Sometimes, these chemicals are just by-products of metabolism that may serve other purposes, or they are perhaps excretory products that would be toxic if allowed to accumulate in the cells. The chemical in the aforementioned apples is nothing but acetic acid. Although a natural component of apples, the acid is nevertheless listed as a hazardous substance. Even oxygen is incredibly toxic, but aerobic organisms have developed an incredible biochemical pathway that detoxifies the gas while simultaneously producing energy for their cells.
Many of the incidental chemicals produced by plants are incredibly toxic in high doses. Certain fungi of the genus Aspergillus grow on cereals and produce chemicals called aflatoxins that are hundreds of times more potent than any synthetic pesticide our brains have discovered. Yet, our ethics do not apply to Aspergillus, unless one considers the timely application of a fungicide on stored grains the right thing to do in protecting food safety.
If we agree that the chemicals produced by plants are functional, has evolution not resulted in a form of chemical technology? As defined by the dictionary, technology is the totality of the means employed to provide objects necessary for human sustenance and comfort. Through our chemical technology, aren't we just "imitating" our botanical counterparts?
Members of indigenous cultures have long used plants as their medicines. The knowledge of which plants to use, how to prepare them, and the amounts to administer have been passed from generation to generation. Isn't the use of flora for our benefit, our survival, a form of chemical technology? Perhaps we should consider generations of trial and error in discovering which plants are beneficial and which are not as analogous to a risk assessment process.
Humans have always used chemical technology. Whether the chemicals are made by plants or by our own hands is irrelevant. Some have maintained there is a difference between chemicals from the tropical rain forests and chemicals from the giant chemical industries. But principles of environmental chemistry would dictate that behavior of a chemical is governed primarily by thermodynamics, not how it was made.
Some would say that our coevolution with plants over many generations has allowed us to detoxify many of the natural dietary chemicals. Consider, however, that many of our foods are recent inventions of selective breeding that still possess the same potentially toxic chemicals as their wild ancestors.
Why are we not harmed? The answer is in the dose; one would have to eat an unreasonably large quantity of potatoes to overdose on solanine, a toxic but natural alkaloid. Yet, we are exposed to this known toxin and to teratogen (by EPA testing criteria) with every french fry. So, dose must make the poison, as the toxicological cliche goes.
One perspective we overlook in our myth about the quality of natural chemicals versus synthetic chemicals is our own biochemistry. Our detoxification systems are quite general in their function. Perhaps as a result of exposure to a bewildering array of plant chemistry, animals have evolved a flexible oxidative enzyme system that makes no distinction as to chemical source. Why one chemical is more rapidly degraded and excreted from the body than another chemical is a matter of kinetics. The question the biochemical toxicologist asks is what is the affinity of the enzyme for the chemical and how fast does the reaction occur. Thus, even DDT, which is stored in our fat tissue (as DDE), is degraded into an acid and eventually eliminated from our body. The process just occurs more slowly than with other so-called biodegradable chemicals.
So, what are the ethics of chemical technology? A case can be made that chemicals are just tools we use to survive, no different than what we find in the botanical world. It takes time to learn what works and what doesn't, but because we can produce new kinds of chemicals so quickly, we have conflicts about functionality and safety. We have passed legislation over the years that allows us to compress the "trial and error" approach into a comparatively fast assessment of risk.
While many would agree that the regulatory process certainly needs some
adjustments, under current practices there should be no ethical dilemma in
using our chemical tools.
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Jeff Jenkins and Gene Carpenter, state IR-4 representatives for Oregon and Idaho, respectively, attended the meeting. Jenkins and Carpenter led a discussion on supporting future joint projects of regional interest. Jenkins described the Oregon Minor Use Committee, which provides approximately $75,00 for GLP IR-4 trials each year.
Commissioners worked to develop a request for proposals for the 1996 field season. The request is expected to be mailed to a wide array of potential applicants by the end of January.
The commission will fund studies and activities expected to result in the obtainment and maintenance of pesticide registrations for minor uses an d emergency uses in Washington. Only requests for assistance with projects expected to directly result in a pesticide registration will be considered. Proposals must originate from the affected pesticide user community.
Although those submitting proposals are not required to provide matching support, applicants are encouraged to provide matching funding, in-kind services or materials for laboratory studies and investigations.
Proposals are due by March 7, 1996. For more information on WSCPR funding for projects, contact Catherine Daniels at 509- 372-7492.
The IR-4 Project has agreed to support each of 11 projects that the commission has committed to fund. This means that each project will be initiated in 1996, unless the registrant does not agree to allow the project to proceed.
In other actions, commissioners welcomed William Green to the commission. Green was appointed recently by the Department of Ecology to serve as a non-voting commissioner.
Topics for the next meeting of the commission include election of officers, bylaw development, adoption of a final budget, review of tracking system proposals and discussion of the request for proposals.
The next commission meeting is scheduled for January 18 beginning at 10 a.m. at the WSU Allmendinger Center in Puyallup.
Notes: The next meetings of the WSCPR are scheduled as follows:
Puyallup at WSU Allmendinger Center on January 18; Richland at the WSU
Tri-Cities campus on March 20; and Yakima on May 22 at the WSU Extension
office located in the courthouse. All meetings begin at 10 a.m.
Contact Catherine Daniels to be placed on an Interested Parties List. Those on this list will automatically be mailed information on commission activities. Catherine Daniels may be contacted at phone: (509) 372-7492, fax: (509) 372-7460 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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**The U.S. Geological Survey is preparing to release a report on pesticides in surface waters in the dryland and irrigated cropland in the Columbia Basin. The bad news is that pesticides were found to be very common in surface water in both cropping systems. There were enough detections to make one really think about use of pesticides. Even as familiar as I am with the issue, I was surprised at the findings. The good news is that very few, if any, detections were at a level that would cause me concern. I expect that the USGS findings will serve to spur action toward improving the type and method of application of pesticides in the Columbia Basin. Most of the detections were herbicides. No fungicides were detected, and only a few insecticides and one herbicide were found at concentrations higher than expected. Another USGS study, on pesticides in Columbia Basin groundwater, is expected to be released in January or February.
**The Washington State Commission on Pesticide Registration may provide
as much as $200,000 to $250,000 in funding for additional pesticide projects
in 1996. This is in addition to $169,000 the commission has set aside for
11 projects it has already approved. There was approximately 100% match for
the $169,000 provided by the commission for the 11 projects.
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In 1994, 691 individuals claimed exposure to pesticides in 589 incidents. The sources of the claims were Poison Control Center (305), Department of Labor and Industries (199), Department of Agriculture (34), individuals (22), health care provider (15) and other (14).
The relationship of symptoms to exposure were definite (41 or 6%), probable (79 or 11%), possible (90 or 13%), unlikely (102 or 15%), unrelated (71 or 10%), asymptomatic (233 or 34%), indirect (4 or 1%) and unknown (71 or 10%). Total claims in 1993 were a similar 695, with a relatively similar breakdown in number of claims per category.
Eastern Washington had 320 claims; Western Washington had 269 claims. Agriculture accounted for 373 claims, non-agriculture claims accounted for 212; four claims were listed as unknown. Males accounted for 455 claims; females accounted for 236 claims. Average age of claimants from both sexes was 26 years.
Occupational incidents accounted for 310 claims; non-occupational incidents accounted for 378 claims; and three claims were considered unknown. The four top non-agricultural incidents were homeowner use (250), commercial home or apartment (30), commercial building, office or school (18) and non-commercial buildings (17).
Approximately 177 of the incidents were associated with exposure to
rodenticides. These accounted for 202 claims, all but two or three of which
involved children who consumed rodent baits. In virtually every case, the
child was asymptomatic. This explains the high rate (34%) of cases being
asymptomatic. The remaining rodenticide cases involved zinc phosphide, a much
more serious matter.
Counties with the greatest number of poisonings
|F=fungicide||FA=feed additive||G=growth regulator||H=herbicide|
|(A) Cellulose Acetate||Consep, Inc.||Exempt||Growing crops only|
|(F) Metalaxyl||Ciba-Geigy||0.1|| Brassica (cole) leafy
Brussels sprouts and
|(I) Avermectin B1,|
and its Delta-8,
Contributors to the Agrichemical and Environmental News:
Alan Schreiber, Allan Felsot, Catherine Daniels, Mark Antone, Carol Weisskopf, Eric Bechtel
If you would like to include a piece in a future issue of the Agrichemical and Environmental News or subscribe to the newsletter, please contact Catherine Daniels.
Contributions, comments and subscription inquiries may be directed to:
Catherine Daniels, Food and Environmental Quality Laboratory, Washington State University, Tri-Cities campus, 2710 University Drive, Richland, WA 99352-1671. Phone: 509-372-7495. Fax: 509-372-7491.
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