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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract - Special Submissions: Agricultural Air Quality

Use of SOFEA to Predict 1,3-D Concentrations in Air in High-Use Regions of California


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 40 No. 5, p. 1462-1469
    Received: Mar 29, 2010

    * Corresponding author(s): ijvanwesenbeeck@dow.com
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  1. I. J. van Wesenbeeck *,
  2. S. A. Cryer,
  3. P. L. Havens and
  4. B. A. Houtman
  1. Dow AgroSciences, LLC, 9330 Zionsville Rd., Indianapolis, IN 46268. Assigned to Associate Editor Sharon Papiernik


Methyl bromide, a commonly used soil fumigant, is being phased out per the Montreal Protocol and multiple fumigants are being positioned as replacements. Most effective soil fumigants, including methyl bromide, have the potential for inhalation exposure if the material volatilizes from soil. Chronic exposures for the fumigant 1,3-dichloropropene (1,3-D) are managed in part by the California Department of Pesticide Regulation by limiting the annual amount that can be used within a given township. A stochastic/deterministic numerical system (SOil Fumigant Exposure Assessment system [SOFEA]) was developed using the USEPA air dispersion model ISCST3, field study observations for flux loss, and links to Geographic Information Systems (GIS). SOFEA was used retrospectively to simulate concentrations of 1,3-D in air for direct comparison with monitoring program observations conducted by California Air Resources Board in Fresno County. These results indicated slight overprediction but correct magnitudes for regional air concentrations, especially at the higher percentiles, and provide a performance test. SOFEA was also used, prospectively, to predict air concentrations in potential future-use scenarios. These simulations of chronic air concentrations in two high-use 1,3-D counties of California (Ventura, Merced) consisted of 25 contiguous townships treated either at 1.5 times the current township allocation (40,937 kg) or at the maximum levels of 1,3-D used between 1999 and 2006. Exposure predictions for large regions are necessary to evaluate chronic population-based lifetime exposure and risk to 1,3-D should use patterns change. SOFEA provides a tool to estimate regional air concentrations within high-use areas required for such risk assessments.

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