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Occurrence and Distribution of Sulfonylurea and Related Herbicides in Central Canadian Surface Waters 2006–2008


Surface water sampling in 2006–2008 measured the occurrence of sulfonylureas and related herbicides (SUs) during base flow conditions and wet weather events. Flumetsulam (29.2%), diuron (36.5%) and fomesafen (25.3%) were most frequently detected over the course of the study. Typical SU concentrations were in the low parts per trillion range; however, maximum concentrations of fomesafen (873 ng/L), linuron (856 ng/L) and diuron (2,900 ng/L) approached or exceeded 1 μg/L. The temporal trend in SUs showed a correlation with application periods. In general, detections of SUs were more frequent where rotation of row crops was more intense. Sampling during wet-weather events indicated potential for a range of SUs to be flushed into surface waters at relatively high concentrations.

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The authors thank Mr. John Kraft and Mr. Michael Knudson of Environment Canada for technical assistance.

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Correspondence to Chris Marvin.

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Struger, J., Grabuski, J., Cagampan, S. et al. Occurrence and Distribution of Sulfonylurea and Related Herbicides in Central Canadian Surface Waters 2006–2008. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 87, 420 (2011).

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  • Sulfonylurea herbicides
  • Surface water
  • Pesticides