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Home > Protecting Our Lands & Waters > Water Protection > Pesticide Management Plan > Pesticide Management Plan Committee > PMPC Meetings > PMPC Notes 2014

Pesticide Management Plan Committee Meeting Notes from 6/24/2014 Meeting

June 24, 2014
Room B145 Orville Freeman Building, Saint Paul, MN

Meeting Notes

PMPC members in attendance:

  • Roger Becker – University of Minnesota Extension
  • David Flakne – Syngenta Crop Protection
  • Deanna Scher – Minnesota Department of Health
  • John MacKenzie – Minnesota Golf Course Superintendent
  • Michael Ratka - Farmer
  • Dick Rossman - Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
  • Jill Trescott – Dakota County Environmental Management
  • Warren Formo – Minnesota Agricultural Water Resources Coalition

PMPC Members not in attendance: Katrina Kessler– Minnesota Pollution Control (sent alternate Elise Doucette); Deanna White – Clean Water Action.

Others attending that signed-in (not including speakers): Michelle Campbell- MDA; Kathy Reynolds- MDA; Kevin Cavanaugh- MDA; Jeff Moon- Dow Agro Sciences; Greg Buzicky- MDA; Dan Stoddard- MDA; Jamison Scholer-MDA; and Elise Doucette- MPCA

Welcome and Introductions

Joe Zachmann, Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) welcomed the participants, reviewed the agenda and the Pesticide Management Plan (PMP) objectives. He reminded the Pesticide Management Plan Committee (PMPC) members that the Commissioner welcomes questions and encourages interaction amongst this diverse group during the meeting.

Loretta Ortiz-Ribbing, MDA, facilitated the remainder of the meeting

Committee meeting information is posted.

2013 Monitoring: When, Where and How
Presentation: Bill VanRyswyk, MDA

Bill provided general information related to the 2013 groundwater and surface water monitoring effort. Between the GC-MS/MS and LC-MS/MS analytical methods, the MDA analyzed samples for 131 pesticide analytes in 2013. Groundwater samples were collected from 165 sites across the state, generating 271 sample sets. Surface water samples were collected from 61 locations, generating 921 samples (45,437 individual analyses).

The details of the groundwater and surface water monitoring sites, precipitation monitoring, glyphosate monitoring and special Root River watershed special project were discussed.

A committee member asked why the report includes separate tables for the GC-MS/MS and LC-MS/MS analytes, since both are now reported in parts per trillion (a change from previous years). The MDA acknowledged that there probably was no continued, practical reason to separate the results and that the issue would be considered for next year’s report.

Review of 2013 Groundwater Monitoring Data
John Hines, MDA

John led the review of 2013 pesticide detections in groundwater. The summary focused on groundwater “common detection pesticides.”
A committee member noted that an updated drinking water guidance value for bentazon will soon be posted by the MN Dept. of Health (MDH). It will change from 200,000 ppt. to 30,000 ppt.

A member was not convinced that the acetochlor ESA detection frequency in Pesticide Monitoring Region 4 (PMR 4) represents an upward trend, and may be an artifact of the statistical graphics software fitting the curve to the last data point.

A member noted that groundwater concentration and frequency data from PMR 5 is often similar to or higher than that from PMR 4, and asked if the MDA had sufficiently robust data for PMR 5 to plot trends. The MDA responded that the dataset is getting more robust but is not yet ready for trends analysis.

A few members noted that some detection frequency graphs appear to be drawn through each data point rather than interpolated or fit for statistical trends. The MDA noted that such curve fitting is difficult for the smaller datasets associated with some of the PMRs. The MDA could create tables showing the statistical significance of change in data in those PMRs, though statistical significance may not be accompanied by statistical power.

A member suggested that pesticides in precipitation might have an effect on water resource monitoring results and asked if the MDA has looked at concentration data and trends in precipitation. The MDA responded that the sampling location grid for precipitation monitoring is not dense enough to draw conclusions about trend.

The MDA asked members if detailed graphs and tables for dimethenamid should continue to be included in the annual report given that detection frequency does not appear to be trending toward identifying it (and its degradates) as a “common detection” pesticide. Members did not provide specific comment.

One member suggested looking at specific compounds, like neonicotinoids, on a regional basis, to get a better sense of frequency and concentration trends in certain areas of the state.

The MDA also noted that 2015 is the last scheduled year for the shallow-deep well comparisons in PMR4.

Review of 2013 Surface Water Monitoring Data
David Tollefson, MDA

David led the review of 2013 pesticide detections in surface water.

A member asked about general uses of the insecticide dichlorvos in agricultural settings, and if the MDA knew of a reason for the four detections in the Beauford Ditch watershed at concentrations that exceeded the chronic aquatic life benchmark. The MDA responded that detection of the organophosphate insecticide in Beauford Ditch storm water samples collected by automated sampler stood in contrast to its lack of detection in watershed base flow samples, and its lack of detection in all other surface water samples collected statewide. Additionally, uses of dichlorvos sold in Minnesota are limited to animal production settings and structural applications. MDA intends to further investigate its potential source(s) and report back to the committee.

2014 Monitoring: New Efforts
Bill VanRyswyk, MDA

Bill reviewed the general 2014 monitoring plan, including pesticide-related analysis of private domestic wells with nitrate detections, and a pilot study of wetland water and sediment samples for neonicotinoid insecticides and other pesticides.

Pesticide Program Updates
Gregg Regimbal, MDA

Gregg facilitated brief discussions of the acetochlor impairment delisting for Beauford Ditch and the Le Sueur River (Larry VanLieshout); new water quality Best Management Practices (BMPs) for chlorpyrifos and other agricultural insecticides (Raj Mann); new BMPs to prevent drift and minimize volatilization of potato fungicides (Raj Mann); and a status report on MDA pollinator-related activity, including a 2014 legislative report, a special review of neonicotinoids, pollinator habitat BMPs, pollinator-friendly plant labelling laws, a colony loss compensation program, and a report on the feasibility of establishing an apiary program (Loretta Ortiz-Ribbing).

Summary and Wrap Up

Loretta thanked the committee for their contribution to MDA programs and the state of Minnesota through their attendance, and reminded them of the MDA’s desire for committee comments on the annual monitoring report, especially in regards to groundwater “common detection pesticides,” “surface water pesticides of concern,” or other needs for product restriction to protect water quality were due by Thursday July 24, 2014. The committee was also reminded that their terms as members ended with the meeting, and that reapplication for membership is necessary for continued participation.