Herbicides and the water quality conundrum

Ross, Phil, Fillols, Emilie, Billing, Belinda, and Davis, Aaron (2017) Herbicides and the water quality conundrum. In: Proceedings of the 39th Annual Conference of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologists (39) pp. 182-189. From: ASSCT 2017: 39th Annual Conference of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologists, 3-5 May 2017, Cairns, QLD, Australia.

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HERBICIDAL IMPACT ON the health of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) lagoon came to the forefront in 2009 with the Queensland Government's Great Barrier Reef Protection Amendment Act 2009 and the concurrent review of diuron by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA). Subsequently, Federal and Queensland government programs have maintained the spotlight on both freshwater and marine water quality. Ambitious pesticide load reduction targets have been set by the Reef 2050 Plan, as one of the means to improve water quality and the resilience of the GBR ecosystem. Photosystem II (PSII) herbicides in particular are targeted under the plan. Gaining sustained industry practice change is paramount to achieving these targets. Progress is being made, although the challenges remain, both on the practice change level and on the technical knowledge level. Weed management practices with demonstrated environmental benefits include timing spray applications to avoid run-off within the 20-25 days following spraying, incorporation of residual herbicides by non-run-off inducing irrigation or rainfall, switching to strategic and/or banded application of residual herbicides, and avoiding the use of residual herbicides on ratoons where trash blanketing provides sufficient weed suppression. Other farming system improvements such as controlled traffic may reduce the amount of run-off, contributing to reductions in overall herbicide losses. Growers are switching to alternative residual herbicides in response to tighter controls on the PS II herbicides diuron, atrazine, ametryn and hexazinone. Relative risk rankings being developed indicate that alternative herbicides can offer reduced environmental risk.

Item ID: 54072
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISSN: 0726-0822
Keywords: Diuron, Great Barrier Reef, PSII herbicides, water quality
Date Deposited: 18 Jun 2018 23:47
FoR Codes: 30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3002 Agriculture, land and farm management > 300299 Agriculture, land and farm management not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 82 PLANT PRODUCTION AND PLANT PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8203 Industrial Crops > 820304 Sugar @ 100%
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