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By Ing. Qco. Marcos Tomasoni
The evidence of these movements gives us enough elements to conclude that pesticide applications are uncontrollable, making it impossible to prevent contamination of the environment and exposed populations after spraying. Introduction Since the mid-twentieth century, pesticides have been part of production strategies, becoming a tool for daily use by farmers and agricultural workers and although they have allowed increasing productive yields and the external or “formal” quality of the product, they have produced notable harmful effects: Contamination of water courses and soil, disappearance of animal and plant species and poisoning in humans (Souza Casadinho, 2013). There is abundant scientific literature that shows the relationship between agrochemicals and the deterioration of the health of exposed populations (Ntzani et al., 2013). Scientific works on the mechanisms by which these compounds promote diseases in experimental species are also reproduced (Paganelli et al., 2010). But technical reports on the mechanisms that explain how these pesticides reach populations are not common. Drift studies only consider the possibilities of movement of pesticides at the time of application, without delving into what happens with the sprayed molecules after spraying. Considering the limited drift at the time of application, specialized technicians recommend a series of measures, considering climatic and technological variables, to minimize this unwanted phenomenon (Brambilla, nd).
The problem of controlling pesticides in the environment is central to the debates on regulations that guarantee the constitutional rights to live in a healthy, suitable and balanced environment (National Constitution, Article 41.) An aggravating factor in this issue is the geometric increase in the volumes of agrochemicals thrown into the environment in the Argentine Republic, as a corollary of an agro-production model based on monocultures of transgenic seeds and chemical inputs. Recently CASAFE (Chamber of Agricultural Health and Fertilizers of the Argentine Republic) reported the evolution of its market: the consumption of pesticides increased 858% in the last 22 years, while the cultivated area did so by 50% and the yield of the crops only increased by 30%. In Argentina there is great business for the world poison industry (led by Monsanto and Bayer) and a great problem is generated for collective health (Red de Médicos de Pueblos Fumigados de Argentina, 2013).
(…) Based on the recognition of the 3 drifts that we have developed, the definition of a minimum distance from the sprays to the populated centers should lead us to consider distances greater than 4800 meters, which is the maximum distance that the drop can travel more small of an application (Table 3), in optimal climatic conditions. Let us remember that under conditions of thermal reversion, drift can be enhanced at distances up to 9 times greater, for aerial applications. Although this value will guarantee the minimization of contaminations due to Primary Drifts, it will not be of complete protection against Secondary Drifts, especially due to the effects of thermal reversals. (…)
Several principles demonstrate the long-range mobility of agrochemicals. The vast amount of studies that reveal the environmental contamination of these compounds, show that pesticide molecules travel many kilometers through the air, infiltrate the water bodies, travel through rivers, are discharged with the rains, move in the ambient dust, among so many ways of reaching our lives. The recommendations to minimize contamination by pesticide drift are usually sterile in the practice of agricultural activity, because they cannot control the agrochemical molecules after they are released into the environment.
Producers in the fields have very small application windows, even being canceled when they must configure the climatic variables required by the regulations, with the times of appearance of pests, and the times available by the applicator companies to provide the service . An aggravating factor in the concentrations of contaminants derived from pesticides that are reported is in the greater amounts of pesticides that are applied in each new campaign, due to the resistance that pests develop (Souza Casadinho, 2009), and the cocktails that are improvised by producers at the time of spraying, whose synergistic effects have not been studied.
These situations increase the risks of contamination from this activity, and mobilize the populations exposed to resolve a deteriorated sanitary and environmental situation as never before (Paren de Fumigar Córdoba Collective). Based on what has been developed, we can affirm that there is no controllable pesticide application, because basically what cannot be controlled is the interaction between the climate and the physicochemical phenomena of the pesticides, their residues, and the adjuvants and surfactants.
STOP FUMIGATING… STOP SICKING… STOP KILLING…!
Collective stop fumigating Córdoba