Pesticides, like other industrial chemicals released into the environment, can move through the air. The offsite movement of pesticides is typically referred to as drift. With more Californians living closer to agricultural fields, drift incidents that cause human illness and property damage are more likely to occur. Drift onto adjacent crops can lead to severe crop damage or illegal residues.
The job of DPR and the county agricultural commissioners (CACs) is to make sure that pesticide levels in the air do not pose a risk to health and the environment. Regulators manage drift through enforceable standards on how, when, and where pesticides should be applied.
- Pesticide drift brochure, PDF (509 kb) En Español, PDF (487 kb)
- Pesticide drift--an overview, PDF (27 kb) (2000)
- Air Quality Initiative – DPR’s comprehensive effort to improve air quality statewide. The initiative targets air toxins as well as smog-producing chemicals from pesticide emissions.
- Filing a complaint
- Pesticide Drift Incident Response Policy, PDF (48 kb) (2000 letter to CACs)
- Regulating Pesticides: Who, why and how?, PDF (438 kb)
- Drift archives – information on past drift activities
- Pesticide illness data – DPR’s database on illnesses related to pesticide exposure, including those resulting from drift
- Reimbursing Medical Costs of Persons Injured in Pesticide
Incidents, PDF (132 kb) (handout);
Reembolso de Gastos Médicos a Personas Lesionadas en Incidentes de Pesticidas, PDF (152 kb)
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
For content questions, contact:
1001 I Street, P.O. Box 4015
Sacramento, CA 95812-4015