Pesticide residues persist in Danish water
Despite sharply declining pesticide use, residues continue to be found in samples of Danish water year on year, Jyllands-Posten newspaper reported today.
Citing new figures from the national statistics office (DST), the newspaper said residues were found in 34% of samples from all sources taken during 2000; in one in ten samples, permissible limits were exceeded. The respective figures for 1999 were 29% and 9%.
During the same period, pesticide sales reckoned by quantity of active ingredients fell by 7%, while the total decline since 1997 has been about 22%. Pesticide use in agriculture has halved over the past ten years.
Professor Arne Helweg of the Danish institute of agricultural sciences (Dias) told Jyllands-Posten: \"The sins of the past are not cleansed all at once, and at some locations the substances are badly handled, which increases the risk of spillage and pollution.\" The apparently contradictory figures might also reflect the fact that the authorities have concentrated on high-risk sites and privately owned water supplies, he added.
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