Water company's herbicide campaign

A campaign to curb the use of triazine and other herbicides which threaten drinking water supplies has been launched by Severn Trent Water. The initiative is a response to herbicide contamination which forced the company to abandon two aquifers, and will require it to invest heavily in water treatment plants unless the inputs are curbed at source.

Severn Trent's "Spraysafe" conference in Birmingham marked the public launch of its campaign. The main targets are atrazine, simazine and mecoprop - residual herbicides widely used in non-agricultural applications. The compounds are highly mobile, and when used to control weeds on roads, paths and well-drained areas are rapidly washed into water-courses. MCPA, 2,4-D and diuron are also problem products whose use the company is aiming to reduce

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