The occurrence of pesticides in drinking water is a matter of growing concern in several parts of the world, mainly in developing countries, due the possible adverse effects on human health. Pesticides applied in the agriculture are an important source of contamination and are rarely monitored in surface water in developing countries, either by water supply operators or health authorities, often not accomplishing the legal issues regarding the quality control of raw waters. The paper discusses a method for prioritization of surveillance actions of pesticides in surface waters, through multicriteria analysis. Five criteria were defined and a range of weight was established for each criterion. For validation of the method, it was applied in five sub-basins of Grande River Basin—MG. This application allowed ordering priority sub-basins for pesticides surveillance, suggesting two sub-basins as priorities. The validation performed enabled the evaluation and adjustment of the method, mainly regarding the availability of information. The method showed a practical alternative for the environmental surveillance, targeting priority areas. Moreover, its structure allows the application in other different areas and for other pollutants.

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