Agrochemicals use in horticulture industry in Tanzania and their potential impact to water resources
The objective of this review was to analyze the existing information on the use of agrochemicals (Fertilizers and Pesticides) in the Tanzanian horticulture industry especially the Northern regions and their potential to impacting water resources. Agrochemicals play an important role in horticulture, and have been widely used in Tanzania for crop protection and increasing productivity. Apart from these benefits, agrochemicals have the potential to impair the quality of water resources for different end uses. Majority of communities in Tanzania depend on surface water from rivers and lakes for potable uses such as washing, drinking and domestic animals also drink from these sources. Reports from studies done in Northern Tanzania have indicated the presence of significant levels of pesticides, phosphates and nitrates in surface and groundwater. It is apparent that most of the horticultural farms in Northern Tanzania are located on gently sloping land adjacent to water bodies. Thus discharges of wastewaters from horticulture farms may affect the quality of water resources through run-off and groundwater through infiltration if proper management of the agrochemicals is not well adhered to. The agrochemicals that have been widely used and identified as potential environmental pollutants from their use as horticultural chemicals are reviewed. The potentially adverse impacts of these agrochemicals to water resources are discussed. The review concludes with a discussion of the directions for further investigation.
Keywords: Pesticides, fertilizers, wastewater, horticulture, environment
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