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Prediction of accumulation and leaching of fungicide copper in agricultural soils

Lofts, Stephen. 2011 Prediction of accumulation and leaching of fungicide copper in agricultural soils. NERC/Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, 58pp. (C03634) (Unpublished)

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Abstract/Summary

Copper is applied extensively to protect a number of crops, including vines/grapes, citrus and other fruits, against fungal attack. In contrast to biodegradable organic chemicals, metals such as copper cannot be degraded in the environment and so can potentially remain as contaminants in the environment for extended periods of time. Metals can undergo processes such as ‘aging’ in certain environmental compartments, such as soils, that reduce their bioavailability and toxicity, but typically a significant proportion of the metal remains in a potentially bioavailable form for extended periods. There is thus a need to assess the potential ecological risks of the ongoing use of copper as a fungicide. This study has been commissioned by the European Copper Task Force (ECTF) to assess the potential risks of the current and future use of copper as a fungicide. Using a set of typical copper application rates, and a set of scenarios covering a representative range of soil types across Europe, we have simulated copper accumulation in soils, surface waters and sediments using an intermediate complexity dynamic model (the IDMM) designed specifically for the long term behaviour of metals. Predicted copper concentrations over time have been compared with Predicted No Effect Concentrations for soil, waters and sediments to assess the current potential risks, and the prospects for the future development of risk under a scenario of continued copper application have been assessed.

Item Type: Publication - Report (UNSPECIFIED)
Programmes: CEH Topics & Objectives 2009 onwards > Biogeochemistry > BGC Topic 3 - Managing Threats to Environment and Health > BGC - 3.1 - Develop temporally and spatially explicit risk assessment tools ...
CEH Topics & Objectives 2009 onwards > Biogeochemistry > BGC Topic 3 - Managing Threats to Environment and Health > BGC - 3.3 - Deliver effective advice, models and applied science ...
CEH Sections: Shore
Funders/Sponsors: European Copper Task Force (ECTF)
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 24 May 2012 08:32
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/18151

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