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Chemosphere. 2019 Nov 11;243:125347. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2019.125347. [Epub ahead of print]

Anthropogenic and meteorological influences on PM10 metal/semi-metal concentrations: Implications for human health.

Author information

1
Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Polytechnic School of Engineering, Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo, 33203, Gijón, Spain. Electronic address: negralluis@uniovi.es.
2
Department of Materials Science and Metallurgical Engineering, Polytechnic School of Engineering, Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo, 33203, Gijón, Spain. Electronic address: bsuarez@uniovi.es.
3
Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Polytechnic School of Engineering, Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo, 33203, Gijón, Spain. Electronic address: eugeniazapicolopez@gmail.com.
4
Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Polytechnic School of Engineering, Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo, 33203, Gijón, Spain. Electronic address: fernandezyolanda@uniovi.es.
5
Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Polytechnic School of Engineering, Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo, 33203, Gijón, Spain. Electronic address: megidolaura@gmail.com.
6
Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Technical University of Cartagena, 30202, Cartagena, Spain. Electronic address: sele.moreno@upct.es.
7
Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Polytechnic School of Engineering, Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo, 33203, Gijón, Spain. Electronic address: emara@uniovi.es.
8
Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Polytechnic School of Engineering, Gijón Campus, University of Oviedo, 33203, Gijón, Spain. Electronic address: cleonor@uniovi.es.

Abstract

There is growing interest in investigating the human health risk associated with metals in airborne particulate matter. The objective of this paper is the health risk assessment of Al, Be, Sb, Sn, Ti and Tl in PM10 under different advections of air masses. These metals/semi-metal were studied in samples collected in an area influenced by industrial activities in northern Spain with the aim of analysing the variations in PM10 metal/semi-metal. Elemental concentrations were assessed over a period of one year in terms of air mass origin by means of back trajectories (HYSPLIT), the conditional probability function, polar plots, PM concentration roses, aerosol maps (NAAPs) and receptor modelling. The mean concentrations of Al, Be, Sb, Sn, Ti and Tl were 254, 0.02, 1.30, 1.15, 15.3 and 0.20  ng/m3, respectively, and were within the usual range for suburban stations in Europe. The highest levels were recorded during conditions of regional air mass origin, highlighting the importance of sources not far from the station. Under these circumstances, the renovation of air masses was not produced. The main sources of metals were anthropogenic, mostly related to the use of coal and coke production. In general, the cancer and non-cancer risk values obtained in this study fell within accepted precautionary criteria in all trajectory groups. However, in order to improve air quality and reduce risks to human health, the impact resulting from the joint inhalation of Al, Be, Sb, Sn, Ti and Tl should not be ignored when air masses are fundamentally of regional origin.

KEYWORDS:

Air mass origin; Backward trajectory; Health risk assessment; Industrial activity; Metal/semi-metal concentration; PM(10)

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