Environmental and Economic Costs of the Application of Pesticides Primarily in the United States

Abstract

An obvious need for an update and comprehensive study prompted this investigation of the complex environmental costs resulting from the nation’s dependence on pesticides. Included in this assessment of an estimated $12 billion in environmental and societal damages are analysis of pesticide impacts on public health; livestock and livestock product losses; increased control expenses resulting from pesticide-related destruction of natural enemies and from the development of pesticide resistance in pests; crop pollination problems and honeybee losses; crop and crop product losses; bird, fish, and other wildlife losses; and governmental expenditures to reduce the environmental and social costs of the recommended application of pesticides. The major economic and environmental losses due to the application of pesticides in the USA were: public health, $1.1 billion year-1; pesticide resistance in pests, $1.5 billion; crop losses caused by pesticides, $1.1 billion; bird losses due to pesticides, $2.2 billion; and ground water contamination, $2.0 billion.

Keywords

Agriculture Costs Crops Environment Livestock Natural resources Pesticide Pesticide resistance Public health 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. ABCBirds. 2003. Pesticides and Birds Campaign, http://www.abcbirds.org/pesticides/pesticideindex.htm (February 3, 2003).
  2. Akesson, N.B. and Yates, W.E. 1984. Physical parameters affecting aircraft spray application. In: Garner, W.Y. and Harvey, J. (eds), Chemical and Biological Controls in Forestry, Vol. 238. Amer. Chem. Soc. Ser, Washington, DC, pp. 95–111.Google Scholar
  3. Asia Times. 2001. India/Pakistan, http://www.atimes.com/ind-pak/CF14Df01.html (February 3, 2003).
  4. Atlas, R.M. and Bartha, R. 1987. Microbial Biology: Fundamentals and Applications, 2nd ed. Benjamin Cummings Co, Menlo Park, CA.Google Scholar
  5. Baker, B.P., Benbrook, C.M., Groth, G. and Benbrook, K.L. 2003. http://www.consumersunion.org/food/orgnicsumm.htm (January 19, 2003).
  6. Balcomb, R. 1986. Songbird carcasses disappear rapidly from agricultural fields. Auk 103:817–821.Google Scholar
  7. Barometer 1991. Too Much Beer Kills Thousands. Oregon State University Barometer, May 14.Google Scholar
  8. Barnes, C.J., Lavy, T.L. and Mattice, J.D. 1987. Exposure of non-applicator personnel and adjacent areas to aerially applied propanil. Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. 39: 126–133.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Boutin, C., Freemark, K.E. and Kirdk, D.E. 1999. Spatial and temporal patterns of bird use of farmland in southern Ontario. The Canadian Field Naturalist 113: 430–460.Google Scholar
  10. Burgett, M. 2000. Pacific Northwest Honey Bee Pollination Survey, http://www.nhb/org.download/2000polin.pdf (January 20, 2003).
  11. Carlsen, E.A., Giwercman, A., Kielding, N. and Skakkebaek, N.E. 1992. Evidence for decreasing quality of semen during the past 15 years. British Medical Journal. 305: 609–613.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Carrasco-Tauber, C. 1989. Pesticide Productivity Revisited. M.S. Thesis, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts.Google Scholar
  13. CEQ 1980. The Global 2000 Report to the President of the U.S. Entering the 21st Century. Pergamon Press, New York.Google Scholar
  14. Colborn, T, Myers, J.P. and Dumanoski, D. 1996. Our Stolen Future: How we are Threatening our Fertility, Intelligence, and Survival: A Scientific Detective Story. Dutton, New York.Google Scholar
  15. Cornell. 2003. Common Pesticides in Groundwater, http://pmep.cce.cornell.edu/facts-slides-self/slide-set/gwater09.html (January 21, 2003).
  16. CWS. 2003. Pesticides and Wild Birds. Canadian Wildlife Service, http://www.cws-scf.ec.gc.ca/hww-fap/hww-fap.cfm?ID_species-90&lang=e (February 3, 2003).
  17. D’Anieri, P., Leslie, D.M. and McCormack, M.L. 1987. Small mammals in glyphosphate-treated clearcuts in Northern Maine, Canadian Field Naturalist. 101: 547–550.Google Scholar
  18. Dobbins, J. 1986. Resources Damage Assessment of the T/V Puerto-Rican Oil Spill Incident. James Dobbins Report to NOAA, Sanctuary Program Division, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  19. Edwards, C.A., and Lofty, J.R. 1982. Nitrogenous fertilizers and earthworm populations in agricultural soils. Soil Biology & Biochemistry. 14: 515–521.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Elliot, J.E., Norstrom, R.J., and Keith, J.A. 1988. Organochlorines and eggshell thinning in Northern Gannets (Sula bassanus) from Eastern Canada 1968–1984. Environmental Pollution. 52: 81–102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. EPA 1977. Minutes of Administrator’s Pesticide Policy Advisory Committee. March, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  22. EPA 1989. Carbofuran: A Special Review Technical Support Document. US Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Pesticides and Toxic Substances, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  23. EPA 1990. National Pesticide Survey-Summary. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  24. EPA 1992. Hired Farm Workers Health and Well-being at Risk. United States General Accounting Office Report to Congressional Requesters. February.Google Scholar
  25. FAO 1988. Integrated Pest Management in Rice in Indonesia. Food and Agriculture Organization, United Nations, May, Jakurta.Google Scholar
  26. Flickinger, E.L., King, K.A., Stout, W.F., and Mohn, M.M. 1980. Wildlife hazards from furadan 3G applications to rice in Texas. Journal of Wildlife Management. 44: 190–197.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Flickinger, E.L., Juenger, G., Roffe, T.J., Smith, M.R. and Irwin, R.J. 1991. Poisoning Canada geese in Texas by parathion sprayed for control of Russian wheat aphid. Journal of Wildlife Diseases. 27: 265–268.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Groth, E., Benbrook, C.M. and Lutx, K. 1999. Do you Know what you’re Eating? An Analysis of U.S. Government Data on Pesticide Residues in Foods, http://www/consumersunion.org/food/do_you_know2.htm (January 19, 2003).
  29. Hairston, N.G., Smith, F.E. and Slobodkin, L.B. 1960. Community structure, population control and competition. The American Naturalist. 94: 421–425.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hall, F.R. 1991. Pesticide application technology and integrated pest management (IPM). In: Pimentel, D. (ed), Handbook of Pest Management in Agriculture, Vol. II. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, pp. 135–170.Google Scholar
  31. Hanner, D. 1984. Herbicide drift prompts state inquiry. Dallas Morning News, July 25.Google Scholar
  32. Hardy, A.R. 1990. Estimating exposure: The identification of species at risk and routes of exposure. In: Somerville, L. and Walker, C.H. (eds), Pesticide Effects on Terrestial Wildlife. Taylor and Francis, London, pp. 81–97.Google Scholar
  33. Harper, C.R. and Zilberman, D. 1990. Pesticide regulation: problems in trading off economic benefits against health risks. In: Zilberman, D. and Siebert, J.B. (eds), Economic Perspectives on Pesticide Use in California, October, pp. 181–208.Google Scholar
  34. Hart, K. and Pimentel, D. 2002. Public health and costs of pesticides. In: Pimentel, D. (ed), Encyclopedia of Pest Management. Marcel Dekker, New York, pp. 677–679.Google Scholar
  35. Hebert, H.J. 2003. EPA guidelines address kids, cancer risks, Detroit Free Press. http://www.freep.com/news/childrenfirst/risk4_20030304.htm (March 10, 2003).
  36. Holmes, T., Neilsen, E. and Lee, L. 1988. Managing Groundwater Contamination in Rural Areas: Rural Development Perspectives. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Series, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  37. ICAITI 1977. An Environmental and Economic Study of the Consequence of Pesticide Use in Central American Cotton Production. Guatemala City, Guatemala: Final Report, Central American Research Institute for Industry, United Nations Environment Program.Google Scholar
  38. Kaiser, J. 2003. Economics: How much are Human Lives and Health Worth? http://www.rff.org/rff/,News/,Coverage/,2003/,March/,How-Much-Are-Human-Lives-and-Health-Worth.cfm-72 k (September 3, 2003).
  39. Mazariegos, F. 1985. The Use of Pesticides in the Cultivation of Cotton in Central America. Guatemala, United Nations Environment, Industry and Environment. July/August/September.Google Scholar
  40. McCarthy, S. 1993. Congress takes a look at estrogenic pesticides and breast cancer. Journal of Pesticide Reform 13:25.Google Scholar
  41. Millar, J.G. 1995. Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposal to reclassify the bald eagle in most of the lower 48 states. Journal of Raptor Research 29: 71.Google Scholar
  42. Mineau, P. 1988. Avian mortality in agroecosystems. I. The case against granule insecticides in Canada. In: Greaves, M.P. and Smith, B.D. (eds), Field Methods for the Environmental Effects of Pesticides. British Crop Protection Council (BPCP), Monograph 40, Thornton Heath, London, pp. 3–12.Google Scholar
  43. Mineau, P., Fletcher, M.R., Glaser, L.C. Tomas, N.J., Brassard, C., Wilson, L.K., Elliott, J.E., Lyon, L.A., Henny, C.H., Bolinger, T. and Porter, S.L. 1999. Poisoning of raptors with organophosphorus and carbamate pesticides with emphasis on Canada, U.S., and U.K. Journal of Raptor Research 33: 1–37.Google Scholar
  44. Mussen, E. 1990. California crop pollination. Gleanings in Bee Culture 118: 646–647.Google Scholar
  45. NAS 1975. Pest Control: An Assessment of Present and Alternative Technologies, Vol. 4. National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  46. NAS 1987. Regulating Pesticides in Food. National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  47. NAS 1989. Alternative Agriculture. National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  48. National Animal Poison Control Centers 2003. http://www.canismajor.com/dog/poison.html (January 19, 2003).
  49. National Residue Program 2002. http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPHS/blue2002/ – 8 k (February 3, 2003).
  50. Oka, I.N. 1991. Success and challenges of the Indonesian national integrated pest management programme in the rice based cropping system. Crop Protection 10: 163–165.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Oka, I.N. and Pimentel, D. 1976. Herbicide (2, 4-D) increases insect and pathogen pests on corn. Science 193: 239–240.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Pan-UK 2003. Current Pesticide Spectrum, Global use and Major Concerns. http:// www.pan-uk.org/briefing/SIDA_Fil/Chap1.htm (January 18, 2003)
  53. PCC 2002. News Bites. http://www.pccnaturalmarkets.com/sc/0205/newsbites.html (January 19, 2003).
  54. Pimentel, D. 1997. Pest management in agriculture. In: Pimentel, D. (ed) Techniques for Reducing Pesticide Use: Environmental and Economic Benefits. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, pp. 1–11.Google Scholar
  55. Pimentel, D. 1988. Herbivore population feeding pressure on plant host: Feedback evolution and host conservation. Oikos 53: 289–302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Pimentel, D. 1994. Insect population responses to environmental stress and pollutants. Environmental Review. 2(1): 1–15.Google Scholar
  57. Pimentel, D. and Greiner, A. 1997. Environmental and socio-economic costs of pesticide use. In: Pimentel, D. (ed) Techniques for Reducing Pesticide Use: Environmental and Economic Benefits. John Wiley & Sons; Chichester, pp. 51–78.Google Scholar
  58. Pimentel, D. and Hart, K. 2001. Pesticide use: ethical, environmental, and public health implications. In: Galston, W. and Shurr, E. (eds), New Dimensions in Bioethics: Science, Ethics and the Formulation of Public Policy. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston, pp. 79–108.Google Scholar
  59. Pimentel, D., McLaughlin, L., Zepp, A., Latikan, B., Kraus, T., Kleinman, P., Vancini, F., Roach, W.J., Graap, E., Keeton, W.S. and Selig, G. 1991. Environmental and economic impacts of reducing U.S. agricultural pesticide use. In: Pimentel, D. (ed), Handbook on Pest Management in Agriculture. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, pp. 679–718.Google Scholar
  60. Pimentel, D., Stachow, U., Takacs, D.A., Brubaker, H.W., Dumas, A.R., Meaney, J.J., O’Neil, J.A.S., Onsi, D.E., and Corzilius, D.B. 1992. Conserving biological diversity in agricultural/forestry systems. BioScience 42: 354–362.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Pimentel, D., Acquay, H., Biltonen, M., Rice, P., Silva, M., Nelson, J., Lipner, V., Giordana, S., Horowitz, A. and D’Amore, M. 1993a. Assessment of environmental and economic impacts of pesticide use. In: Pimentel, D. and H. Lehman (eds), The Pesticide Question: Environment, Economics and Ethics. Chapman and Hall, New York, pp. 47–84.Google Scholar
  62. Pimentel, D., McLaughlin, L., Zepp, A., Lakitan, B., Kraus, T., Kleinman, P., Vancini, F., Roach, W.J., Graap, E., Keeton, W.S., and Selig, G. 1993b. Environmental and economic effects of reducing pesticide use in agriculture. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 46: 273–288.Google Scholar
  63. Pimentel, D., Wilson, C., McCullum, C., Huang, R., Dwen, P., Flack, J., Tran, Q., Saltman, T. and Cliff, B. 1997. Economic and environmental benefits of biodiversity. Bioscience 47: 747–757.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Potter, D.A. and Braman, S.K. 1991. Ecology and management of turfgrass insects. Annual Review of Entomology 36: 383–406.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Potts, G.R. 1986. The Partridge: Pesticides, Predation and Conservation. Collins, London.Google Scholar
  66. Reddy, V.R., Baker, D.N., Whisler, F.D. and Fye, R.E. 1987. Application of GOSSYM to yield decline in cotton. I. Systems analysis of effects of herbicides on growth, development and yield. Agronomy Journal 79: 42–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Repetto, R. and Baliga, S.S. 1996. Pesticides and the Immune System: The Public Health Risks. World Resources Institute, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  68. Richter, E.D. 2002. Acute human pesticide poisonings. In: Pimentel, D. (ed.) Encyclopedia of Pest Management. Dekker, New York, pp. 3–6.Google Scholar
  69. Stone, W.B. and Gradoni, P.B. 1985. Wildlife mortality related to the use of the pesticide diazinon. Northeastern Environmental Science 4: 30–38.Google Scholar
  70. Stringer, A., and Lyons, C. 1974. The effect of benomyl and thiophanate-methyl on earthworm populations in apple orchards. Pesticide Science 5: 189–196.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Stuart, S: 2003, Development of Resistance in Pest Populations. http://www.nd.edu/chem191/e2.html (January 20, 2003).
  72. Trumbel, J.T., Carson, W., Nakakihara, H. and Voth, V. 1988. Impact of pesticides for tomato fruit worm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) suppression on photosynthesis, yield, and non-target arthropods in strawberries. Journal of Economic Entomology 81: 608–614.Google Scholar
  73. UFW 2002. Latino Farmworkers Face Greater Risk of Cancer. http://www.faultline.org/new/2002/08/UFWcancer.html (January 18, 2003).
  74. UNEP 1979. The State of the Environment: Selected Topics-1979. Nairobi: United National Environment Programme, Governing Council, Seventh Session.Google Scholar
  75. Unnevehr, L.J., Lowe, F.M., Pimentel, D., Brooks, C.B., Baldwin, R.L., Beachy, R.N., Chornesky, E.A., Hiler, E.A., Huffman, W.E., King, L.J., Kuzminski, L.N., Lacy, W.B., Lyon, T.L., McNutt, K., Ogren, W.L., Reginato, R. and Suttie, J.W. 2003. Frontiers in Agricultural Research: Food, Health, Environment, and Communities. National Academies of Science, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  76. USBC 1990. Statistical Abstract of the United States. U.S. Bureau of the Census, U.S. Department of Congress, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  77. USDA 1989. Agricultural Statistics. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Government Printing Office.Google Scholar
  78. USFWS 1988. 1985 Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife Associated Recreation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  79. USGS 1995. Pesticides in Public Supply wells of Washington State, http://wa.water.usgs.gov/ccpt/pubs/fs-122-96.html (January 21, 2003).
  80. USGS 1996. Pesticides Found in Ground Water below Orchards in the Quincy and Pasco Basin, http://wa.water.usgs.gov/ccpt/pubs/fs-171-96.html (January 21, 2003).
  81. Weiner, B.P. and Worth, R.M. 1972. Insecticides: Household use and respiratory impairment. In Adverse Effects of Common Environmental Pollutants. MSS Information Corporation, New York, pp. 149–151.Google Scholar
  82. Well-Owner 2003. The Use of Ground Water, http://www.wellowner.org/useof.html (January 21, 2003).
  83. White, D.H., Mitchell, C.A., Wynn, L.D., Flickinger, E.L., and Kolbe, E.J. 1982. Organophosphate insecticide poisoning of Canada geese in the Texas Panhandle. Journal of Field Ornithology 53: 22–27.Google Scholar
  84. White, L. 1967. The historical roots of our ecological crisis. Science 155: 1203–1207.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  85. WHO 1997. Malaria: A Statistical Index. World Health Organization, Geneva. The Scientist 11(10): 6 (May 12, 1997).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Entomology, College of Agriculture and Life SciencesCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

Personalised recommendations