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Environ Toxicol Chem. 2001 Apr;20(4):853-65.

Frequently co-occurring pesticides and volatile organic compounds in public supply and monitoring wells, southern New Jersey, USA.

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  • 1U.S. Geological Survey, West Trenton, New Jersey 08628, USA. pestack@usgs.gov

Abstract

One or more pesticides were detected with one or more volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in more than 95% of samples collected from 30 public supply and 95 monitoring wells screened in the unconsolidated surficial aquifer system of southern New Jersey, USA. Overall, more than 140,000 and more than 3,000 unique combinations of pesticides with VOCs were detected in two or more samples from the supply and monitoring wells, respectively. More than 400 of these combinations were detected in 20% or more of the samples from the supply wells, whereas only 17 were detected in 20% or more of the samples from the monitoring wells. Although many constituent combinations detected in water from the supply and monitoring wells are similar, differences in constituent combinations also were found and can be attributed, in part, to differences in the characteristics of these two well types. The monitoring wells sampled during this study yield water that typically was recharged beneath a single land-use setting during a recent, discrete time interval and that flowed along relatively short paths to the wells. Public supply wells, in contrast, yield large volumes of water and typically have contributing areas that are orders of magnitude larger than those of the monitoring wells. These large contributing areas generally encompass multiple land uses; moreover, because flow paths that originate in these areas vary in length, these wells typically yield water that was recharged over a large temporal interval. Water withdrawn from public supply wells, therefore, contains a mixture of waters of different ages that were recharged beneath various land-use settings. Because public supply wells intercept water flowing along longer paths with longer residence times and integrate waters from a larger source area than those associated with monitoring wells, they are more likely to yield water that contains constituents that were used in greater quantities in the past, that were introduced from point sources, and/or that are derived from the degradation of parent compounds along extended flow paths.

PMID:
11345463
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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