Airborne dioxins and other POPs in the Baltic Sea environment: the potential of using metals as source markers
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Atmospheric sources are major contributors of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) in the Baltic Sea environment. In this study, we investigated the potential of using trace metals along with PCDD/F levels and seasonal trends as markers of important source types for PCDD/Fs in air. Levels of PCDD/F congeners (n=17) and metals (n=16) were measured in summer and winter air using high volume sampling at a rural field station (Aspvreten, Sweden). During winter, levels were on average 20 times higher than in summer (5.1 ± 5.8 fg TEQ m-3 and 0.26 ± 0.18 fg TEQ m-3, respec- tively) mostly due to a higher fraction of PCDFs. The increased levels were pronounced in air masses from southern (S) and eastern (E) compass sectors. Most of the detected metals (n=12) were positively and significantly correlated with the PCDF congeners for all compass sectors (Cd, Co, Cu, Fe, K, Mn, Pb, Sb, and Zn) during winter season. The average correlation coefficient (r) value for the correlation between PCDF congeners and these metals was 0.85 and p values generally below <0.05. In contrast, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and hexachlorobenzene (HCB) showed no significant correlations with detected metals except for HCB and Cr (r=0.60 and p<0.01). The wide range of candidate metals as source markers for PCDD/F emissions, and the lack of an up-to-date extensive compilation of source characteristics for metal emission from various sources, limited the use of the metals as source markers in the current study. Although, the study was not able to pin-point primary PCDD/F sources for Baltic air, we demonstrated a promising approach for source tracing of PCDD/F in air.
dioxin, POPs, metal, source, atmospheric, baltic sea
Research subject biology, Environmental Science
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-102867OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-102867DiVA: diva2:810801
FunderSwedish Environmental Protection Agency, 09/181