Soil-air exchange model of persistent pesticides in the United States cotton belt

Environ Toxicol Chem. 2001 Jul;20(7):1612-21. doi: 10.1897/1551-5028(2001)020<1612:saemop>;2.


Measurements of organochlorine pesticides (lindane, cis-chlordane [CC], trans-chlordane [TC], trans-nonachlor [TN]), dieldrin, p,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene [DDE], and toxaphene) in Alabama, USA, air and soil were used to assess the soil-air equilibrium status and to identify compounds with significant contributions to observed air burdens. Of the compounds tested, p,p'-DDE and toxaphene showed a significant potential for outgasing, followed by dieldrin and trans-nonachlor, which showed moderate outgasing potentials. Lindane, cis-chlordane, and trans-chlordane were near soil-air equilibrium. A fugacity-based, multilayered soil-air exchange model was used to predict temporal trends of chemical in air and soil resulting from reemission of soil residues to a presumed clean atmosphere (maximum emission scenario). Results showed that p,p'-DDE and toxaphene accounted for up to 50% of the observed air burden and that approximately 200 to 600 kg of p,p'-DDE and 3,000 to 11,000 kg to toxaphene are released to the atmosphere each year by soils in Alabama (area = 1.23 x 10(11) m2). High annual net fluxes were also predicted for dieldrin and trans-nonachlor (300-1,100 kg and 150-500 kg, respectively), but these only account for up to approximately 20% of their observed air burdens.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture
  • Air Movements
  • Air Pollutants / analysis*
  • Environmental Monitoring
  • Gases / analysis
  • Gossypium
  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated*
  • Insecticides / analysis*
  • Soil Pollutants / analysis*
  • Volatilization


  • Air Pollutants
  • Gases
  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated
  • Insecticides
  • Soil Pollutants