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    Toxicity of Percolate from Decontaminated Pesticide-Contaminated Soils

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    Pesticide storage sites and aerial application landing sites all represent potential sources of surface and groundwater contamination. Cleansing operations associated with spraying equipment and leakage of containment areas during torrential rains both represent vehicles for pesticide contamination of adjacent soils. The objectives of this research were to measure toxicity of percolate from treated contaminated soils and to determine what level of treatment would produce a nontoxic percolate. Two treatments were examined, activated carbon and agricultural limestone. Treatments were applied to soils contaminated with either toxaphene (1167 mg/kg), chlorpyrifos (96 mg/kg), or carbofuran (876 mg/kg). The toxicity of control water and percolates from uncontaminated soils (control), contaminated soil, and treated soils were measured with fathead minnows. Agricultural limestone was not effective in reducing the toxicity of contaminated soils. Percolate from contaminated soils resulted in 100% mortality and percolate from uncontaminated soils resulted in no mortality. Levels of activated carbon required for 50% survival of fathead minnows at 96 h were 62.7, 0.3, and 46.3 g of activated carbon per kilogram of soil for toxaphene, chlorpyrifos, and carbofuran contaminated soils, respectively. Expressed relative to soil contamination levels, the application rates which would produce 50% survival were 54, 3, and 57 mg of activated carbon per milligram of soil pesticide for toxaphene, chlorpyrifos, and carbofuran, respectively.


    toxicity, decontamination, activated carbon, agricultural lime, fathead minnow, toxaphene, chlorpyrifos, carbofuran, aquatic toxicology

    Author Information:

    Graves, DA
    Graduate student, Columbia, SC

    Foltz, JW
    Associate professor of fisheries, Clemson University, Clemson, SC

    Colcolough, JJ
    Chemist, Clemson University, Clemson, SC

    Horton, PM
    Extension specialist, Clemson University, Clemson, SC

    Committee/Subcommittee: E47.01

    DOI: 10.1520/STP10283S