Atmospheric polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the urban environment: Occurrence, toxicity and source apportionment
Mishra, Nitika, Ayoko, Godwin A., & Morawska, Lidia (2015) Atmospheric polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the urban environment: Occurrence, toxicity and source apportionment. Environmental Pollution, 208(Part A), pp. 110-117.
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Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) represent a major class of toxic pollutants because of their carcinogenic and mutagenic characteristics. People living in urban areas are regularly exposed to PAHs because of abundance of their emission sources. Within this context, this study aimed to:
(i) identify and quantify the levels of ambient PAHs in an urban environment;
(ii) evaluate their toxicity; and
(iii) identify their sources as well as the contribution of specific sources to measured concentrations.
Sixteen PAHs were identified and quantified in air samples collected from Brisbane. Principal Component Analysis – Absolute Principal Component Scores (PCA- APCS) was used in order to conduct source apportionment of the measured PAHs. Vehicular emissions, natural gas combustion, petrol emissions and evaporative/unburned fuel were the sources identified; contributing 56%, 21%, 15% and 8% of the total PAHs emissions, respectively, all of which need to be considered for any pollution control measures implemented in urban areas.
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