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Agrochemical Impacts on Human and Environmental Health: Mechanisms and Mitigation


Identify, develop, and/or validate trace residue analytical methods, immunological procedures, biosassays and biomarkers. Characterize abiotic and biotic reaction mechanisms, transformation rates, and fate in agricultural and natural ecosystems. Determine adverse impacts from agrochemical exposure to cells, organisms, and ecosystems.

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Since chartered in 1956, the W-3045 has provided leadership in identifying agrochemical fate, exposure and health effects, characterizing adverse impacts from agrochemical exposure to cells, organisms, and ecosystems, and putting into practice and advancing mitigation technologies that reduce risks to humans and the environment. Today, the work of W-3045 extends well beyond the western region with involvement from a wide assemblage of USDA-ARS and nationwide state AES land-grant university researchers-extension specialists. W-3045 members effectively integrate information across scales ranging from molecular to landscape levels to address the fate and effects of agrochemicals and emerging organic contaminants in/on human, animal and environmental health. The ability to cross disciplinary boundaries and to adapt different measurement and modeling tools to address complex emerging environmental problems remains essential for improved risk management and risk communication. Cooperating W-3045 researchers represent an array of aligned disciplines in basic and applied biology, toxicology, environmental chemistry, engineering, risk assessment, outreach, and education to address current and emerging human-environmental agrochemical health issues. USDA-ARS facilities in MN, MD and SD and state land grant AES colleges and their affiliate institutions span over the west (AZ, CA, HI, MT, NM, NV, OR, WA), Great Plains (KS), Midwest (IA, IN, MI, MN, OH), east (NY), and southern states (FL, LA). W-3045 research and extension crosses disciplinary boundaries providing key information to state and national public-environmental health regulatory agencies, soil conservation districts, regional agricultural commodity groups, and agrochemical users. The depth of knowledge and strong collaborations among state AES and USDA-ARS scientists provide a unique amalgamation of research and extension capabilities. This on-going collaboration will remain vital to address existing and emerging challenges for characterizing the impact and devising appropriate mitigations for pesticides and other agrochemicals that are for and from agriculture. The emerging challenges in crop protection will require a broader array of genetic tools for investigating more subtle tropic interactions that can have adverse impacts at the organism, population, community, and ecosystem level. W-3045 membership will continue to include researchers investigating emerging issues who will be needed to develop technologies for future agricultural pest control needs.The value of W-3045 membership is strongly evident today at the national and international levels. W-3045 members from USDA-ARS (MD) and UC-Riverside AES respectively chaired and co-chaired the 2014 International Congress of Pesticide Chemistry (IUPAC) scientific program activities with program support from many W-3045 members. Collaborations built in W-3045 have continually strengthened state AES and ARS involvement in the American Chemical Society Agrochemical Division (AGRO). W-3045 members from ARS MD, UC-Riverside AES, ARS ND, NV AES, MN ARS, MS AES, OR AES, and WA AES serve in official capacities or on executive committees. It is worthy to note, three W-3045 extension specialists and researchers have been recently distinguished as Fellows in the ACS AGRO. As important, a very high percent of ACS AGRO graduate research awards (40% in 2012 alone) came from W-3045 project members in areas of proteomic/bioavailability modeling to land-scale native grass phytoremediation simulations of herbicide runoff. W-3045 OR AES scientists also provide outreach to the public through toll-free and web-based services from the National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC). This information center provides objective, science-based information about pesticides pesticide poisonings, toxicology, and environmental chemistry that enable people to make informed decisions. TOXicology NETwork (EXTOXNET) also housed at Oregon State University remains among one of the most widely used internet sites for those seeking technical information on pesticides and household chemicals. Members also work closely with industry and non-profit associations impacted by agrochemical use such as the US Composting Council, state agricultural crop and animal commissions and commodity groups. In summary, the collaborative and multidisciplinary activities of W-3045 have been singularly effective in communicating to other researchers, governmental agencies, industry, non-profits and the public about the potential impacts of agrochemicals and ideas for mitigation.

Krieger, Robert
University of California - Riverside
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