What are the drawbacks of pesticides in agriculture?
Pesticides may disturb the normal plant growth and development. Pesticides are not destroyed by the soil microbes and accumulate near the plant roots making the supply of Nitrogen, Phosphorous, and Potassium ineffective. This results in the growth restriction of the crops and diminishes the soil fertility. Pesticides decrease plant resistance against other harmful microbes. Pesticides permeate into the soil with rains and mix with ground waters contaminating them. Pesticides may drain into the streams, rivers, and lakes polluting the water sources and killing living organisms in water reservoirs.
What are the drawbacks of pesticides from evolutionary standpoint?
Abuse of pesticides contributes the development of pesticide resistance. The pests that are resistant to pesticides are able to survive. Resistance has a genetic basis and pests can pass modified genes of resistance to the progeny. Thus, the pest populations become more resistant to the applied pesticides.
What are the drawbacks of pesticides for useful organisms?
Pesticides often kill the beneficial organisms as well. Useful pollinators such as bees and valuable predators such as ladybirds may become innocent victims of pesticide application. Pesticides are also toxic for wild animals and plants or for pets. Pesticides can possibly destroy beneficial organisms and thus damage fields, gardens, orchards, and the environment.
What are the drawbacks of pesticides for human health?
Pesticides may cause a range of acute and chronic detrimental health effects. Spraying of pesticides produces suspensions of toxic compounds in the air. These suspensions may cause respiratory affections in workers who inhale these pesticides. The harmful effects of pesticides may begin with the irritation of the skin and end with severe affection of the nervous system, hormonal breakdown, loss of fertility, and cancers. Agricultural workers may become victims of severe pesticide poisoning. Numerous cases of birth defects, fetal death, neurologic and developmental disorders are also associated with the use of pesticides.
Pesticides and children
Pesticide exposure during pregnancy is associated with behavioral disorders of childhood. The impairment to the brain in early life may reveal itself much later. Pesticides deteriorate the system of immunity. Exposure to pesticides during pregnancy makes individuals more susceptible to their toxic effects in adult age. The remainders of pesticides accumulate with years and cause slow disease development.
What are the drawbacks of pesticides for hormonal balance?
Some pesticides detected in food are able to cause imbalance of natural hormones. Moreover, they can create problems at extremely low doses. Pesticides may block natural hormones or simulate their action. These endocrine disruptors may affect behavior, development and reproduction. Girls may enter early puberty. Boys may experience decrease of spermatozoid counts.