Pesticides, which are available in various ways like insecticides, herbicides, or fungicides like that are vastly using these days. Yes, they help to grow crops faster. But there is an invisible ghost that comes along with those. Someone can say that the damage is not invisible. You wanted to do the damage that’s why you apply those. It is also true in some way. Let’s find today how pesticides can harm our soil.
In massive agriculture, pesticides became a must. Farmers have used to those and they now can’t grow crops in the ancient organic ways.
First let’s see why people use pesticides
The main reason is to protect the crops from unwanted plants and animals. Animals in the sense, small insects and vertebrates. There is a famous quote that says “ there are more living organisms in the soil of one handful of a shovel than the population of the earth”. Therefore the soil can be both good and bad for the crops. That depends.
When we look at the most commonly used pesticides like “Chlorpyrifos”. It has been banned in some countries. The harmful effects have been the reason to ban this.
How They Affect
Pesticides are applying directly to the soil or to crops. However, they end up in the soil. Pesticides that consist of chemicals are absorbed by the soil. And then they do their work. Those chemicals are designed to kill or disable the growth of unwanted organisms. But the problem is, there are millions of organisms in the soil that are very valuable to us. Even for the planted crops. But the chemicals work on them too. Which leads to their death. Because of that, the nutrient level of the soil gets reduced. Farmers have to spray another chemical type which we called fertilizers to the crops since the natural nutrient providers have been washed out.
The number of living organisms in a given size of soil is a parameter for qualitatively study soil quality. Using of pesticides reduces soil quality. Those added pesticides will be deposited in the soil for a long time. And with the rains, they washed out. They get added to the waterways with the flaw. Or sinking through the soil, they get added to the groundwater and pollute it.
These conditions cause long time damages to society such as cancers. Some researches have found that using of this polluted water have increased the fertility problems and also the child that born have various kinds of disabilities. Such as childhood cancers and neuro-development issues.
One very important bad effect of pesticides is, they harm the pollinators also. The chemicals that spray on the crops can be harmful to the pollinators. Which will affect the harvest also. Therefore it indirectly affects the economy.
What we should Do
We need to be more concerned about the environment more before it gets damaged. The actions take to recover are harder than the actions need to protect. Reducing pesticides and change to environmentally friendly and healthy solutions is a must. People did farming thousands of years back. Therefore these chemicals are not a must.Feature Photo by CDC on Unsplash