Alternative Measures of Pesticide Use

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<ul><li><p>This article was downloaded by: [University of North Carolina]On: 08 October 2014, At: 10:26Publisher: RoutledgeInforma Ltd Registered in England and Wales Registered Number: 1072954Registered office: Mortimer House, 37-41 Mortimer Street, London W1T 3JH,UK</p><p>Journal of Health &amp; SocialPolicyPublication details, including instructions forauthors and subscription information:http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/wzhs20</p><p>Alternative Measures ofPesticide UseC. Barnard PhD a &amp; N. D. Uri PhD ba Economic Research Service, U.S. Department ofAgriculture , Washington, DC, 20005, USAb Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S.Department of Agriculture , Beltsville, MD, 20705,USAPublished online: 21 Oct 2008.</p><p>To cite this article: C. Barnard PhD &amp; N. D. Uri PhD (1999) Alternative Measures ofPesticide Use, Journal of Health &amp; Social Policy, 11:2, 31-40</p><p>To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/J045v11n02_03</p><p>PLEASE SCROLL DOWN FOR ARTICLE</p><p>Taylor &amp; Francis makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of all theinformation (the Content) contained in the publications on our platform.However, Taylor &amp; Francis, our agents, and our licensors make norepresentations or warranties whatsoever as to the accuracy, completeness,or suitability for any purpose of the Content. Any opinions and viewsexpressed in this publication are the opinions and views of the authors, andare not the views of or endorsed by Taylor &amp; Francis. The accuracy of theContent should not be relied upon and should be independently verified withprimary sources of information. Taylor and Francis shall not be liable for anylosses, actions, claims, proceedings, demands, costs, expenses, damages,and other liabilities whatsoever or howsoever caused arising directly orindirectly in connection with, in relation to or arising out of the use of theContent.</p><p>http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/wzhs20http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/J045v11n02_03</p></li><li><p>This article may be used for research, teaching, and private study purposes.Any substantial or systematic reproduction, redistribution, reselling, loan,sub-licensing, systematic supply, or distribution in any form to anyone isexpressly forbidden. Terms &amp; Conditions of access and use can be found athttp://www.tandfonline.com/page/terms-and-conditions</p><p>Dow</p><p>nloa</p><p>ded </p><p>by [</p><p>Uni</p><p>vers</p><p>ity o</p><p>f N</p><p>orth</p><p> Car</p><p>olin</p><p>a] a</p><p>t 10:</p><p>26 0</p><p>8 O</p><p>ctob</p><p>er 2</p><p>014 </p><p>http://www.tandfonline.com/page/terms-and-conditions</p></li><li><p>Alternative Measures of Pesticide Use</p><p>C. Barnard, PhDN. D. Uri, PhD</p><p>ABSTRACT.While kilograms of pesticide is the most common way ofmeasuring agricultural chemical use, the type of analysis will generallydefine what measure of chemical use is best. In this paper differentmeasures are considered. The inferences one draws concerning pesti-cide use can vary substantially depending on the measure. [Article copiesavailable for a fee from The Haworth Document Delivery Service:1-800-342-9678. E-mail address: getinfo@haworthpressinc.com]</p><p>KEYWORDS. Pesticide, alternative measures, agriculture, chemical use</p><p>INTRODUCTION</p><p>While kilograms of pesticide material used is the most common method ofmeasuring agricultural chemical use in the United States, the type of analysisundertaken will define what measure of chemical use is most appropriate. Forexample, quantifying the risk from the exposure to pesticides typically re-quires weighing usage or residues by acute or chronic health and environ-mental toxicity coefficients and subsequently estimating human or environ-mental exposure to such hazards. The inferences associated with alternativemeasures of pesticide use is the subject of what follows.</p><p>C. Barnard is Senior Economist for the Resource Economics Division, EconomicResearch Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC 20005. N. D.Uri is Program Analyst for the Resource Inventory Division, Natural ResourcesConservation Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Beltsville, MD 20705.</p><p>The views expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent thepolicies of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the views of other U.S. Departmentof Agriculture staff members.</p><p>Journal of Health &amp; Social Policy, Vol. 11(2) 1999E 1999 by The Haworth Press, Inc. All rights reserved. 31</p><p>Dow</p><p>nloa</p><p>ded </p><p>by [</p><p>Uni</p><p>vers</p><p>ity o</p><p>f N</p><p>orth</p><p> Car</p><p>olin</p><p>a] a</p><p>t 10:</p><p>26 0</p><p>8 O</p><p>ctob</p><p>er 2</p><p>014 </p></li><li><p>JOURNAL OF HEALTH &amp; SOCIAL POLICY32</p><p>PESTICIDE USE IN THE UNITED STATESAS COMMONLY MEASURED</p><p>Pesticide use in agriculture in the United States increased until the early1980s, coinciding with the growth in crop acres and a larger share of cropacres receiving pesticide treatments. Since the 1982 peak in crop acresplanted, the quantity of pesticide active ingredients used by farmers hasfluctuated between 0.44 and 0.47 million metric tons. The annual fluctuationshave partially been in response to changes in crop acres, government set-aside requirements, and pest infestations, but also reflect some trends in theintensity of use per acre and the effect of newer products applied at lowerrates than the older products they replaced.Pesticide products are classified as herbicides, insecticides, fungicides,</p><p>and other pesticides. Table 1 shows details about the type and quantity ofpesticides applied to major field crops, fruits and vegetables. The major cropproducing areas of the United States, not surprisingly, dominate the distribu-tion of the application rate. The heaviest application rates occur in the potatogrowing region of Idaho and the apple producing regions of Washington andOregon.While the conventional measurement units of pesticide use provide a</p><p>relative indication of intensity of use, they fail to account for differences inproduct characteristics or changes in the mix of products over time. Becauseeach pesticide ingredient can differ greatly in its toxicity, persistence, andmobility, other measurement units are needed to reflect any changes in thehealth or environmental risks posed by pesticides. Introduced in the nextsection are constructed measures which adjust for different toxicity and per-sistence characteristics and illustrate how these characteristics have changedover time. Due to pesticides whose registrations were canceled (i.e., thechemical can no longer be used such as DDT, aldrin, and chlordane), changesin use restriction, and shifts to less toxic chemicals, the perception that healthand environmental risks parallel the aggregate changes in pesticide quantitiesis not necessarily valid.</p><p>ALTERNATIVE MEASUREMENT OF PESTICIDE USE</p><p>Pesticide use in the United States, as traditionally reported, reached recordlevels in 1994. But, for assessing the human-health and environmental im-plications of pesticide use, weight of the materials may not be the most usefulindicator of pesticide use. The amount of pesticides applied, measured inkilograms or acres treated, fails to account for the wide variation both intoxicity per kilogram and persistence in the environment which characterizes</p><p>Dow</p><p>nloa</p><p>ded </p><p>by [</p><p>Uni</p><p>vers</p><p>ity o</p><p>f N</p><p>orth</p><p> Car</p><p>olin</p><p>a] a</p><p>t 10:</p><p>26 0</p><p>8 O</p><p>ctob</p><p>er 2</p><p>014 </p></li><li><p>C. Barnard and N. D. Uri 33</p><p>TABLE 1. Estimated Quantities of Pesticide Active Ingredients Applied toSelected U.S. Crops, 1964-951</p><p>Commodities 1964 1966 1971 1976 1982 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995</p><p>1,000 metric tons of herbicidesCorn 13.1 23.7 52.1 106.7 125.5 112.1 108.3115.63104.1 111.1 96.4Cotton 23.8 3.4 10.1 9.4 10.78 10.9 13.4 13.3 12.1 14.7 19.9Wheat 4.7 4.3 6.0 11.3 10.1 8.6 7.0 8.9 9.4 10.7 10.3Sorghum 1.0 2.1 5.9 8.1 8.1 6.9 7.3 na na na naRice 1.3 1.5 4.1 4.4 7.3 8.3 8.3 9.1 na na naSoybeans 2.2 5.4 18.8 41.8 68.7 38.4 36.0 34.7 33.0 35.7 35.1Peanuts 1.5 1.5 2.3 1.7 2.5 2.1 2.3 na na na naPotatoes 0.7 1.1 1.1 0.9 0.8 1.2 1.3 1.1 1.3 1.5 1.5Other Vegetable1.1 1.8 1.7 2.8 2.2 2.5 2.4 3.0 3.0 3.1 3.2Citrus 0.1 0.2 0.3 2.5 3.2 2.9 3.1 2.9 2.6 2.5 2.4Apples 0.1 0.2 0.1 0.3 0.3 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.3 0.4Other Fruit 0.4 0.9 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.9 0.9 0.9 0.9 1.0 1.0</p><p>1,000 metric tons of insecticidesCorn 8.1 12.2 13.2 16.5 15.5 11.9 11.9 10.8 9.5 8.9 7.7Cotton 40.2 33.5 37.8 33.1 9.9 7.0 4.2 7.9 7.9 12.3 15.5Wheat 0.5 0.5 0.9 3.7 1.5 0.5 0.1 0.6 0.1 1.0 0.5Sorghum 0.4 0.4 2.9 2.4 1.3 0.6 0.6 na na na naRice 0.1 0.2 0.5 0.3 0.3 0.1 0.2 0.1 na na naSoybeans 2.6 1.7 2.9 4.1 6.0 4.1 0.2 0.2 0.1 0.3 0.3Peanuts 2.8 2.9 3.1 1.3 0.5 0.9 1.0 na na na naPotatoes 0.8 1.5 1.4 1.7 1.9 1.9 1.9 1.8 2.0 2.3 1.6Other Vegetable4.3 4.2 4.3 2.9 2.3 2.4 2.3 2.8 2.7 2.9 2.9Citrus 0.7 1.5 1.6 2.4 2.7 1.4 2.1 2.3 2.7 2.6 2.7Apples 5.6 4.4 2.5 1.9 1.7 1.9 2.1 2.0 2.1 2.0 1.8Other Fruit 0.9 2.1 1.3 1.7 1.0 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.6 2.8 2.9</p><p>1,000 metric tons of fungicidesCorn 0 0 0 10.3 35.6 0 0 0 0 0 9.8Cotton 0.1 0.2 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.5 0.4 0.4 0.4 0.5 0.5Wheat 0 0 0 0.4 0.6 0.1 0.1 0.6 0.4 0.5 0.3Sorghum 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 na na na naRice 0 0 0 0 0.1 0.1 0.2 0.2 na na naSoybeans 0 0 0 0.1 0.1 0 0 0.1 0 0.1 0.1Peanuts 0.6 0.6 2.3 3.5 2.4 3.8 4.2 3.5 na na naPotatoes 1.7 1.8 2.1 2.1 2.1 1.4 1.6 1.9 2.3 3.3 4.1Other Vegetable2.3 2.1 2.9 2.6 3.4 6.7 6.8 8.9 9.6 11.3 11.2Citrus 2.5 2.1 4.8 3.0 2.5 1.3 1.9 1.8 1.7 1.8 2.1Apples 4.0 4.4 3.7 3.3 2.9 2.2 2.3 2.3 2.4 2.4 2.4Other Fruit 0.8 1.4 1.5 2.0 1.3 2.1 2.2 2.2 2.2 2.3 2.3</p><p>1,000 metric tons of other pesticidesCorn 0.1 0.3 0.2 0.3 0.1 0 0 0 0 0 0Cotton 6.4 7.3 9.6 6.5 4.8 7.8 8.0 8.1 6.5 8.0 10.1Wheat 0 0.1 0.2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0Sorghum 0 0.1 0 0.2 0.1 0 0 na na na naRice 0 0 0 0 0.1 0 0 0.1 na na naSoybeans 0 0.1 0.1 1.00 1.3 0 0 0 0 0 0</p><p>Dow</p><p>nloa</p><p>ded </p><p>by [</p><p>Uni</p><p>vers</p><p>ity o</p><p>f N</p><p>orth</p><p> Car</p><p>olin</p><p>a] a</p><p>t 10:</p><p>26 0</p><p>8 O</p><p>ctob</p><p>er 2</p><p>014 </p></li><li><p>JOURNAL OF HEALTH &amp; SOCIAL POLICY34</p><p>TABLE 1 (continued)</p><p>Commodities 1964 1966 1971 1976 1982 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 19951,000 metric tons of other pesticides</p><p>Peanuts 3.6 3.6 0.2 0.6 0.8 1.2 1.4 na na na naPotatoes 0.1 0 3.3 4.4 7.8 18.1 23.5 25.6 41.1 40.3 37.6Other Vegetable2.9 0.3 1.8 2.6 3.2 8.9 9.3 12.5 14.2 17.2 17.2Citrus 0.8 0.4 0.7 0.1 0 0 0 0 0.1 0.1 0.1Apples 0.5 0.6 0.3 0.3 0.2 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1Other Fruit 0.2 0.8 0.3 0.3 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.6 na</p><p>1,000 metric tons of all pesticide typesCorn 21.2 36.2 65.5 123.5 141.1 124.1 120.2 126.4113.6 120.1 103.8Cotton 49.1 44.3 57.7 49.1 25.5 26.2 25.9 29.7 26.9 35.6 43.1Wheat 5.2 4.7 7.0 15.4 12.1 9.2 7.1 10.1 9.9 12.2 11.1Sorghum 1.4 2.5 8.9 10.6 9.4 7.5 7.9 na na na naRice 1.5 1.6 4.6 4.6 7.6 8.5 8.7 9.4 na na naSoybeans 4.7 7.0 21.7 46.9 75.9 38.4 36.3 34.9 33.2 35.8 35.4Peanuts 8.5 8.5 7.9 7.1 6.3 7.9 8.8 na na na naPotatoes 3.1 4.5 8.0 9.2 12.7 22.6 28.3 30.4 35.2 48.2 44.8Other Vegetable10.7 8.4 10.7 10.9 11.2 20.5 20.8 27.2 29.5 34.5 34.4Citrus 4.2 4.1 7.3 8.0 8.5 5.7 7.0 6.9 7.1 7.0 7.2Apples 10.3 9.5 6.6 5.8 5.2 4.3 4.7 4.5 4.8 4.7 4.7Other Fruit 2.2 5.2 3.4 3.8 2.9 5.6 5.7 5.7 5.7 6.4 6.8</p><p>1Estimates are constructed for the total U.S. acreage of the selected commodities. In yearswhen the surveys did not include all states producing the crop, the estimates assume similar userates for those states.Source: USDA, ERS, AER-717 (prior to 1993) and unpublished USDA survey data following1993.</p><p>the continuously changing array of more than 350 active ingredients thathave been used in U.S. agricultural production in the last 40 years. Alterna-tive measures of pesticide use, recently developed to measure pesticide use interms of toxicity- and persistence-adjusted units, indicate a dramatically dif-ferent trend in use over the 1964 to 1992 period.Pesticide weight, as a measure of pesticide use, has two particularly nota-</p><p>ble drawbacks when used for evaluating the potential for harm to humanhealth and the environment. First, pesticide active ingredients vary widely interms of toxicity per unit of weight, irrespective of the scale used to measuretoxicity.1 Second, weight does not account for the persistence of the pesticidein the environment. The longer a pesticide ingredient remains active in theenvironment, the more potential there is for it to come in contact with unin-tended species. Persistence varies widely between active ingredients, butmany modern pesticides have half-lives (the typical measure of persistence)in the range of 10 to 100 days.A general perception is that, over time, there has been significant reduc-</p><p>Dow</p><p>nloa</p><p>ded </p><p>by [</p><p>Uni</p><p>vers</p><p>ity o</p><p>f N</p><p>orth</p><p> Car</p><p>olin</p><p>a] a</p><p>t 10:</p><p>26 0</p><p>8 O</p><p>ctob</p><p>er 2</p><p>014 </p></li><li><p>C. Barnard and N. D. Uri 35</p><p>tion in overall toxicity (especially in terms of measures relevant to long-termhuman health) of the substances applied in the environment as agriculturalpesticides (Carlson and Wetzstein [1993] and Zalom and Fry [1992]). Thisperception is apparently based partly on the observation that many newpesticide compounds are applied at lower rates (kilograms per acre) and areless persistent in the environment. In addition and as noted previously, anarray of formerly widely-used, but relatively highly toxic and persistentingredients have been banned by the EPA. The information in this sectionprovides a quantitative assessment of the accuracy of these perceptions.Adjustment factors are used to convert historical pesticide-use data (collectedand reported in terms of kilograms of active ingredients applied) into Persis-tence Units, Toxicity Units and Toxicity-Persistence Units. These terms aredefined below and are more meaningful than kilograms applied with respectto potential environmental and human health impacts. The weighing schemeadopted creates common denominators that reflect variation in toxicity andpersistence among individual pesticide ingredients. Thus, the amounts ofeach pesticide active ingredient applied are aggregated via common units thatare consistent across time, regions, pesticide types, toxicity, and persistence.This approach is consistent with other indexes designed to make assessmentsof aggregate changes in pesticide toxicity and persistence (e.g., Kovack et al.[1992] and Levitan et al. [1995]). The measures are converted to indexes toavoid the difficulties associated with measures that are not unit free. This isuseful when the concern is with trends or the changes in toxicity and persis-tence relative to some base period. In these instances, the precise units associ-ated with the measurement of persistence or toxicity are unimportant.Persistence units (PERSIST) are based on soil half-life. This is length of</p><p>time it takes for a pesticide to break down to half of its initial concentration.The soil half-life is highly dependent upon environmental conditions such assoil pH and climate. Organochlorines and some organophosphates tend to bevery persistent in the environment. PERSIST units are created by calculatingthe half-life of one kilogram of each pesticide active ingredient. Multiplica-tion of the index number for each pesticide active ingredient by kilogramsapplied yields the total PERSIST units for each pesticide ingredient. ThePERSIST units for each ingredient are then summed to obtain an aggregatemeasure of PERSIST. That is,</p><p>(1) PERSISTt = (i (i it)/i (ii(base)))</p><p>where PERSIST denotes the pesticide persistence index, i denotes the half-life of one kilogram of pesticide i, it denotes the number of kilograms ofactive ingredient of pestic...</p></li></ul>

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