The National Water-Quality Assessment Program has released a decadal survey tracking pesticide occurrence and concentrations in the nation's streams and ground water. Based on studies from 1992-2001, the report finds that pesticides are frequently present in streams and ground water in concentrations unlikely to affect humans, but they occur in 83 percent of streams at concentrations that may have effects on aquatic life or fish-eating wildlife. All streams had at least one pesticide detected in the water and most streams had fish and bed-sediment samples that contained organo-chlorine pesticides like DDT that were banned in the United States before the study began. The report had some good news about human health - less than 10 percent of the streams and about one percent of the groundwater had pesticide concentrations considered adverse to human health.
The report, "Pesticides in the Nation's Streams and Ground Water, 1992 - 2001," is available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/circ/2005/1291/.
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