Source Water Protection Activity Guide

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Use any of the following drop-down menus to navigate through the guide. Choosing a potential contaminant source category from the drop-down menu will narrow your potential contaminant source choices. Choosing a protection activity category from the drop-down menu will narrow your protection activity choices.

Contaminant Type

Potential Contaminant Source Category Potential Contaminant Source

Protection Activity Category Protection Activity

Proper Pesticide Application

Protection Activity: Best Management Practices

Pesticides are made up of various chemicals that can reduce the damage to plants caused by pests and control the growth of unwanted plant species. Herbicides, fungicides, insecticides, and rodenticides are all types of pesticides. Pesticides are applied to crops by aerial spraying, topsoil application, soil injection, soil incorporation, or irrigation. If mismanaged or misapplied, pesticides can seep into ground water supplies or runoff to surface water sources where they can be difficult and expensive to remove. If inhaled or consumed, pesticides can be hazardous to human and animal health.

To limit risks associated with pesticide use, select an effective pesticide that targets the intended pest and use products with lower human and environmental risks. Always follow guidance and warnings on the pesticide label regarding setbacks from water, irrigation infrastructure, wetlands, and other sensitive areas. Reconsider starting an application if significant rain or wind may cause drift or runoff at the application site, thereby increasing health and environmental hazards and decreasing product effectiveness. Methods to reduce pesticide use include crop rotation or applying pesticides using soil incorporation methods, post-emergent application, early pre-plant application, spot treatment, split application, reduced rates, and combination products. 

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