Authored by: Robert L. Metcalf

Encyclopedia of Environmental Science and Engineering

Print publication date:  June  2012
Online publication date:  June  2012

Print ISBN: 9781439804421
eBook ISBN: 9780203757659
Adobe ISBN:


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Man employs pesticides as purposeful environmental contaminants in order to improve environmental quality for himself and his domesticated animals and plants. The use of pesticides in agriculture often represents the slender margin between crop production and crop failure, and between economic profit and economic loss, or, in developing countries, between survival and starvation. In public health, pesticides often provide the only feasible means for the control of the invertebrate vectors of human and animal diseases. The purposeful environmental contamination by pesticides generally provides environmental benefits substantially greater than the risk of environmental pollution.

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