Carbofuran
EPA Designation Regulated
EPA Classification Organic Chemicals
EPA Levels 1,2 0.04 MCLG (mg/L)
0.04 MCLG (mg/L)
Alternative Names none
Sources Leaching of soil fumigant used on rice and alfalfa
Carbofuran is a highly toxic insecticide and soil fumigant that had been used on corn, rice and alfalfa; it poses severe risks to children (via diet), agricultural workers and the environment.

Overview

Carbofuran is a white crystalline solid with a slightly phenolic odor.

Uses

Carbofuran is a broad spectrum insecticide that is sprayed directly onto soil and plants just after emergence to control beetles, nematodes and rootworm. The greatest use of carbofuran is on alfalfa and rice, with turf and grapes making up most of the remainder. Earlier uses were primarily on corn crops. Carbofuran is allowed for use on only a few U.S. crops and will soon be banned for use on corn and sorghum in California.

Health Effects

Some people who drink water containing carbofuran well in excess of the maximum contaminant level (MCL) for many years could experience problems with their blood or nervous or reproductive systems.

EPA Data Source: Carbofuran

EPA Definitions:

1Maximum Contaminant Level Goal (MCLG) - The level of a contaminant in drinking water below which there is no known or expected risk to health. MCLGs allow for a margin of safety and are non-enforceable public health goals.

Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) - The highest level of a contaminant that is allowed in drinking water. MCLs are set as close to MCLGs as feasible using the best available treatment technology and taking cost into consideration. MCLs are enforceable standards.

Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level Goal (MRDLG) - The level of a drinking water disinfectant below which there is no known or expected risk to health. MRDLGs do not reflect the benefits of the use of disinfectants to control microbial contaminants.

(TT) Treatment Technique - A required process intended to reduce the level of a contaminant in drinking water.

Maximum Residual Disinfectant Level (MRDL) - The highest level of a disinfectant allowed in drinking water. There is convincing evidence that addition of a disinfectant is necessary for control of microbial contaminants.

2 Units are in milligrams per liter (mg/L) unless otherwise noted. Milligrams per liter are equivalent to parts per million.