A GIS-based model estimates the losses from diffuse sources in surface waters in Germany for 42 active ingredients applied to 11 field crops, vineyards and orchards. For the following pathways of entry: tile drainage, runoff and spray drift, the calculated mean pesticide input amounts to 1490 kg/year, 9060 kg/year and 3350 kg/year, respectively, in 1994. The model results are highly sensitive to the model parameters, primarily the chemical properties of the active ingredients. The modeled water inputs were compared with measured pesticide loads in smaller catchments and large river basins to validate model results. Both datasets agree as to the order of magnitude, nevertheless due to the scale of the study the results should be addressed mainly to comparative interpretations with the focus on the proportions between different active ingredients, soil regions, climates and application periods.

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