Analysis of Soils With Historic Arsenical Pesticide Applications for Arsenic and Lead Contentent
presentationposted on 13.10.2014, 00:00 by Philip Jr. Lavallee, Brandon Reynolds, Scott Schell
Arsenic is a worldwide contaminant of soils and water sources that humanity use for multiple purposes including agriculture. High concentrations of Arsenic in food and water sources have been known to cause cancer and illness in populations. Historically, lead arsenate was applied to fruit orchards as a pesticide before banning by EPA in early 1900s. An orchard in central WY is known to have a history of such pesticide applications. Soil samples were collected from a historic private orchard in Wyoming and analyzed for remaining constituents of arsenical compounds that were formerly applied as pesticides in the form of lead arsenate. The hypothesis is that the arsenical compounds, if still present would be bound within the first 30 cm of soil with little potential to move further. Samples were processed in a lab at University of Wyoming and analyzed for arsenical and lead compounds. Results led to the conclusion that only background Arsenical compounds are held in the soil profile and any remnants of the pesticides have been leeched or bound within the soil so as to be biologically unavailable and of no consequence to the ongoing operations of the orchard.