Project Details Global Framework for Implementing Consistent Ecological Risk Assessment of Pesticides for Sustainable Agriculture

Project No.:
2010-056-1-600
Start Date:
01 January 2011
End Date:
01 December 2013
Division Name:
Chemistry and the Environment Division
Division No.:
600

Objective

  • Identify and prioritize key issues related to pesticide ecological risk assessment in scientifically emerging regions.
  • Develop an integrated framework and guidance document for the application of ecological risk assessment (ERA) methodologies that can be applied to the pesticide regulatory process.
  • Develop training materials and plan for two workshops in order to transfer this approach to selected areas.
  • Facilitate workshops in scientifically emerging countries (Brazil and China) to promote the documents developed as described above, based on state-of-the-art-science and past IUPAC projects.

Description

Background

Exponential growth in agricultural outputs during the last decade has boosted pesticide use significantly in many scientifically emerging regions of the world. As the intensity of agricultural production in these countries has increased, pesticide application has also increased, and potential ecological impact has become a growing concern. However, systematic and harmonized environmental risk assessment (ERA) methodologies are either largely lacking and/or do not reflect the real life conditions in these regions/countries.

There is a strong interest from scientists and regulators in these regions to utilize existing datasets and models to begin the process of ERAs to examine the potential risks to natural resources in sensitive areas. This problem is an area where international cooperation among scientists can be extremely effective in transferring knowledge and skills.

Although significant advances in ERA science and technology have been made over the last decade1,2,3 there is a dearth of concise and effective guidance documents and training materials for consistent and systematic practices of pesticide environmental risk assessment in scientifically emerging countries. While the agricultural practices and environmental conditions in each country will vary, key concepts and approaches will remain the same.

The Crop Protection Chemistry Subcommittee of the DCE has completed a number of projects related to ERA, and the committee includes a number of experts on this topic. Several new members of the subcommittee from Brazil, Uruguay, and China have expressed a strong interest in leveraging this previous work on ERAs to initiate workshops and training opportunities in their countries.

Some recently completed or on-going efforts which can be utilized are:

  1. Global Availability of Information on Agrochemicals (2008-041-1-600) – Website at https://agrochemicals.iupac.org. This freely available website is already up and running. This site has access to the footprint database of pesticide properties. This site can serve as a portal for information and training materials on ERA and other documents along with other information on pesticides.
  2. Development of a pesticide ecological risk assessment and training module (2008-011-2-600) – this project where phase 1 has been completed, already has functioning versions of e-Valuate model which will be housed on the US EPA website and will be freely available.
  3. Crop Protection Chemistry in Latin America (2003-013-1-600) – this nearly completed project has resulted in a Spanish version of the IUPAC Glossary of Terms Related to Pesticides and a Spanish translation of the book “Pesticides in the Environment”.
  4. Agrochemical spray drift: assessment and mitigation (2001-023-1-600) – the product of this project is in press in Environmental Science and Health Part B.
  5. Environmental Risk Assessments for the Registration of Pesticides used in Rice Paddy Fields (2006-044-2-600) – this project is on-going and will be useful for countries with a focus on rice production.

Approach

1. The entire task group will work together through electronic communication methods and phone conferences to develop a global framework for implementing consistent pesticide ERA. Potential gaps in knowledge or experience within the task group will be identified and additional members may be added.

2. Existing products developed in earlier projects will be leveraged and incorporated into the global framework. The task group will develop one or more documents to address different aspects of ERA as identified by the team. These documents will be published in Pure and Applied Chemistry or another appropriate publication. Documents will then be posted on the public website https://agrochemicals.iupac.org where they may be utilized by any scientist.

3. A sub-group of this task group will work specifically to identify and prioritize specific needs from China relevant to assessment procedures, methods, modeling, exposure scenario design principles, risk management standard, and mitigation measures. This information will be used in combination with the global framework in order to develop a roadmap report in English and Chinese to achieve implementation of consistent pesticide ERA methods in China.

4. A second sub-group of this task group will work specifically to identify and prioritize specific needs from South America relevant to assessment procedures, methods, modeling, exposure scenario design principles, risk management standard, and mitigation measures. This information will be used in combination with the global framework in order to develop a roadmap report in English and possibly Spanish and Portuguese to achieve implementation of consistent pesticide ERA methods in South America.

5. It is intended that following the completion of the framework document and recommendations, a pilot project in scientifically emerging countries, e.g. Brazil and China, may be facilitated through the group to promote the outcomes of the ecological risk assessment study. These workshop(s) will be based on training materials developed during the project.

References

1. Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) (1994). Pesticide Risk Assessment and Mitigation. Final Report of the Aquatic Risk Assessment and Mitigation Dialogue Group. SETAC and SETAC Foundation for Environmental Education, Pensacola, FL: SETAC Press.

2. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (1998). Guidelines for Ecological Risk Assessment. EPA/630/R-95/002F. Risk Assessment Forum, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Washington, DC 20460

3. FOCUS (2007). “Landscape And Mitigation Factors In Aquatic Risk Assessment. Volume 1. Extended 35 Summary and Recommendations”. Report of the FOCUS Working Group on Landscape and Mitigation Factors in Ecological Risk Assessment, EC Document Reference SANCO/10422/2005 v2.0. 169 pp.

Progress

A workshop relating to this project will be held during the 4th Latin American Pesticide Residue Workshop, Bogota, Colombia, 26-29 May 2013; for more information see https://www.laprw2013.com

See also IUPAC project 2012-017-1-600 or https://agrochemicals.iupac.org/

See report in Chem Int. Nov 2013, pp. 20-21 (section Project Place)

Project completed

Last update 13 Jan 2014