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Volume 12, No. 1, February 2012, Pages 113-122 PDF(545 KB)  
doi: 10.4209/aaqr.2011.09.0152   

Monitoring and Dispersion Modeling of Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs) in the Ambient Air of Two Municipal Solid Waste Incinerators and a Coal-fired Power Plant

Li-Kai Tu1,2, Yee-Lin Wu1,2, Lin-Chi Wang3,4, Guo-Ping Chang-Chien3,4

1 Department of Environmental Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, No. 1, University Rd., Tainan, 70101, Taiwan
2 Sustainable Environment Research Center, National Cheng Kung University, No. 1, University Rd., Tainan, 70101, Taiwan
3 Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, Cheng Shiu University, 840, Chengching Rd., Kaohsiung 833, Taiwan
4 Super Micro Mass Research and Technology Center, Cheng Shiu University, 840, Chengching Rd., Kaohsiung 833, Taiwan

 

Abstract

 

The concentration of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in the ambient air of two municipal solid waste incinerators (MSWIs) and one coal-fired power plant (TPP) were determined. Along with the sites mentioned above, eight ambient air samples were collected. Cluster analysis was carried out to determine the relationship of PBDE characteristics between each site. Finally, PBDE dispersion modeling in the atmosphere was applied by using ISCST3 (Industrial Source Complex Short Term 3) to assess the impact of the above two municipal solid waste incinerators and one coal-fired power plant on the ambient air. The total-PBDE concentrations in the ambient air were between 24.9 and 139 pg/Nm3, averaging 59.8 pg/Nm3 (n = 16). The BDE-209, BDE-47 and BDE-207 were the most predominant three among all 30 PBDE congeners, which contributed more than 58%, 9%, and 4% of total-PBDE mass to the ambient air, respectively. The results of cluster analysis indicated that no direct correlations existed among the emission sources (MSWI-A, MSWI-B, TPP) and the receptors (sampling sites). From the results of dispersion modeling, the annual total PBDE concentration in ambient air contributed by the MSWI-A, MSWI-B, TPP together were found to be 0.0259% ± 0.0208%. Hence, the results of both cluster analysis and dispersion modeling showed that MWSI-A, MSWI-B, and TPP were definitely not the major contributors of PBDEs to the ambient air environment. The ashes collected from the air pollution control devices of both the MSWIs and the TPP are probably a more important environmental issue and therefore should be paid more attention to.

 

 

Keywords: Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs); Municipal solid waste incinerators; Coal-fired power plant; Stack flue gases; Dispersion.

 

 

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