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Occurrence of selected pesticides and their metabolites in near-surface aquifers of the midwestern United States

Environmental Science and Technology

By:
, ,
DOI: 10.1021/es950462q

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Abstract

The occurrence and distribution of selected pesticides and their metabolites were investigated through the collection of 837 water-quality samples from 303 wells across the Midwest. Results of this study showed that five of the six most frequently detected compounds were pesticide metabolites. Thus, it was common for a metabolite to be found more frequently in groundwater than its parent compound. The metabolite alachlor ethanesulfonic acid (alachlor-ESA; 2-[(2,6- diethylphenyl)(methoxymethyl)amino]-2-oxoethanesulfonic acid) was detected almost 10 times as frequently and at much higher concentrations than its parent compound alachlor (2-chloro-2',6'-diethyl-N-(methoxymethyl)acetamide). The median detectable atrazine (2-chloro-4-ethylamino-6-isopropylamino-s- triazine) concentration was almost half that of atrazine residue (atrazine plus the two atrazine metabolites analyzed). Cyanazine amide [2-chloro-4-(1- carbamoyl-1-methylethylamino)-6-ethylamino-s-triazine] was detected almost twice as frequently as cyanazine (2-chloro-4-ethylamino-6-methylpropionitrile amino-s-triazine). Results show that information on pesticide metabolites is necessary to understand the environmental fate of pesticides. Consequently, if pesticide metabolites are not quantified, the effects of chemical use on groundwater quality would be substantially underestimated. Thus, continued research is needed to identify major degradation pathways for all pesticides and to develop analytical methods to determine their concentrations in water and other environmental media.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Occurrence of selected pesticides and their metabolites in near-surface aquifers of the midwestern United States
Series title:
Environmental Science and Technology
DOI:
10.1021/es950462q
Volume
30
Issue:
1
Year Published:
1996
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
First page:
335
Last page:
340
Number of Pages:
6