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Transfer Pathways and Fluxes of Water-Soluble Pesticides in Various Compartments of the Agricultural Catchment of the Canche River (Northern France)

Abstract : Five frequently used water-soluble pesticides (atrazine, diflufenican, metolachlor, pendimethalin, and ethofumesate) were monitored in surface water and groundwater of an agricultural catchment (Canche River) in Northern France for examining the edge-of-field pathways of substances and their characteristic time of transport. The study of surface water contamination was conducted in 2016 through two time scales: continuously over one year at a single location of the catchment and punctually during four seasons at 15 sampling locations along a longitudinal river profile. In addition, groundwater in winter and summer shows a generally low and relatively constant contamination level. Nevertheless, the outflow of pesticides from groundwater results in a background contamination of surface water. In addition to this, a contamination peak above the baseline level is observed in surface water subsequently to the period of substance application on the fields. Our results show that pesticides were essentially transported into the surface water by fast flow components (runoff water). Loss of pesticides during the contamination peak period and long-term monitoring were compared showing that the transport of substances within weeks after pesticides spreading dominates the annual flux of pesticides, except for atrazine which shows a constant background contamination pattern. Low frequency monitoring schemes provide only a partial picture of the contamination state and do not enable to evaluate the true contamination state of such rivers with regard to the fact that 3/4 of the annual load of pesticides are transported in the stream during only 2-3 months.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - 3:14:47 PM
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Angel Belles, Claire Alary, Agnès Rivière, Sophie Guillon, Edouard Patault, et al.. Transfer Pathways and Fluxes of Water-Soluble Pesticides in Various Compartments of the Agricultural Catchment of the Canche River (Northern France). Water, MDPI, 2019, Special Issue "Catchments as Observatories of the Hydrological and Biogeochemical Functioning of the Critical Zone", 11 (7), pp.1428. ⟨10.3390/w11071428⟩. ⟨hal-02404154⟩

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