The scientific programme will focus on the latest research into the environmental behaviour of pesticides. We will take a holistic view of investigations at various scales, blending research into basic processes with study of routes of environmental exposure and the development of practical management strategies to reduce contamination.
The programme will be of interest to environmental scientists from research organisations, industry, government and NGO’s and to those in related disciplines seeking a concise overview of the state-of-the art.
Microbial degradation frequently provides the primary loss mechanism for most pesticides in soil and water. This session considers pesticide biodegradation processes, including interactions with environmental variables, the characteristics and dynamics of the organisms involved, and the molecular mechanisms underlying biodegradation. Particular emphasis will be given to integrating mechanistic understanding of biodegradation processes with the prediction of pesticide fate and exposure in the environment. The session will also consider ecotoxicological research into the effects of pesticides on soil microorganisms.
A wide range of processes influence the transformation, movement and availability of pesticides in soil, water and air. New work and results at the laboratory scale would be welcome including chemical, hydrolytic, volatility and photochemical mechanisms in soil, water/sediments and air, diffusion, plant uptake, adsorption (including time dependency), bound residues, biofilm and leaching processes. This session will bring together information on new results, new study types and experimental designs, novel pathways and metabolites, novel formulation types and additives, new in-depth understanding of processes, and derivation of input values for modelling.
Field-scale investigations under natural conditions remain critical to link understanding of pore-to-core scale processes of transfer and interactions between pesticides and soil, water, plant and air with the use and management of pesticides at field scale within both present and future cropping systems. This session will gather all relevant information investigating fate of pesticides (including interactions with surfactants and additives) in field soils and crops (together or as separate components) that governs the availability of pesticide and/or metabolite residues for transfer to ground- and surface waters and into the air compartment. It will also cover technological developments improving assessments of fate and the dominant transfer pathways of pesticides including application methods addressing field heterogeneity.
High-quality, safe, and sufficient drinking water and food is essential for life, but monitoring studies report undesirable contamination by pesticides in off-target terrestrial ecosystems, surface waters, groundwater and air. Despite increased integration of policies for improved environmental risk characterisation, there is clearly a need to strengthen the engagement between interdependent actors and stakeholders at the landscape level. Reduction of diffuse contamination by pesticides will be underpinned by research into processes governing fate and exposure at the landscape scale and the development of tools to express how fate and exposure varies across the landscape. This session will address soil, surface water, groundwater and air compartments and will report novel methodologies, new understanding of landscape processes, tools for landscape-level modelling and assessment, and case studies for application of landscape approaches.
This session will discuss new developments and challenges of modelling environmental and human exposure including: interpretation of experimental studies to advance our understanding of how chemical properties, management options and environmental conditions affect exposure in soil, water and air; new and improved tools, process descriptions and parameterisation at various scales; simulation modelling to underpin effective mitigation options; support for the design and interpretation of monitoring studies; and modelling that encompasses global variability and/or environmental change.
Environmental risk mitigation measures are increasingly important components of the risk assessment process and conditions for use for plant protection products. Submissions are encouraged on practical field experiences with testing and implementation to characterise effectiveness and sensitivity of performance for reduction of off-field losses via leaching, drainage, run-off as well as volatilisation and dispersion in the air. Submissions are sought considering how such measures may be effectively represented in risk assessments through modelling and opportunities for translation into practical and effective labelling. Discussions will consider how risk management strategies can be designed to improve communication, awareness, uptake and implementation by product users.
This session will discuss how recent scientific and technological advances in soil, water and air monitoring activities are useful for pesticide management and how they may facilitate the application of social and political requirements that have increased strongly in recent decades at local and regional levels. Papers including results of monitoring plans implemented for the pre-authorisation, post-authorisation and sustainable use of pesticide are invited in this session. The session will include recent technological advances to resolve current policy targets such as environmental risk assessment and management, as well as advances in information technology.