Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in air and seawater of the Atlantic Ocean: sources, trends and processes.

Centre for Chemicals Management and Department of Environmental Science, Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YQ, UK.
Environmental Science and Technology (Impact Factor: 5.48). 04/2008; 42(5):1416-22. DOI: 10.1021/es071432d
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Air and seawater samples were collected on board the RV Polarstern during a cruise from Bremerhaven, Germany to Cape Town, South Africa from October-November 2005. Broad latitudinal trends were observed with the lowest sigma27PCB air concentration (approximately 10 pg m(-3)) in the South Atlantic and the highest (approximately 1000 pg m(-3)) off the west coast of Africa. Sigma(ICES)PCBs ranged from 3.7 to 220 pg m(-3) in air samples and from 0.071 to 1.7 pg L(-1) in the dissolved phase seawater samples. Comparison with other data from cruises in the Atlantic Ocean since 1990 indicate little change in air concentrations over the remote open ocean. The relationship of gas-phase partial pressure with temperature was examined using the Clausius-Clapeyron equation; significant temperature dependencies were found for all PCBs over the South Atlantic, indicative of close air-water coupling. There was no temperature dependence for atmospheric PCBs overthe North Atlantic, where concentrations were controlled by advection of contaminated air masses. Due to large uncertainties in the Henry's Law Constant (HLC), fugacity fractions and air-water exchange fluxes were estimated using different HLCs reported in the literature. These suggest that conditions are close to air-water equilibrium for most of the ocean, but net deposition is dominating over volatilization in parts of the transect. Generally, the tri- and tetrachlorinated homologues dominated the total flux (> 70%). Total PCB fluxes (28, 52, 118, 138, and 153) ranged from -7 to 0.02 ng m(-2) day(-1).

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    ABSTRACT: Distributions, potential sources and ecotoxicological risks of PCBs and PBDEs in surface water of the Three Gorges Dam (TGD) region (Yangtze River, China) were investigated. Samples were collected from 18 sites from upstream (UTGD) and downstream (DTGD) of the TGD. Thirty-two PCBs and ten PBDEs were analyzed. ΣPCBs from the UTGD and DTGD ranged from 10.6 to 26.1 and 1.7 to 29.8 ng L(-1), respectively. ΣPBDEs from the UTGD and DTGD ranged from 2.0 to 17.6 and 0.8 to 11.1 ng L(-1), respectively. The total concentrations of PCBs and PBDEs showed a declining trend from the UTGD to DTGD. Independent-samples t test analysis showed no statistical significance of ΣPCBs and ΣPBDEs between the UTGD and DTGD samples. Principal component analysis indicated the difference of potential sources and levels of PCBs and PBDEs in the study area. The potential eco-toxicological risk of PCBs in surface water of the TGD region is very low, whereas special attention needs to be paid to PBDEs in the study area.
    Ecotoxicology 04/2014; · 2.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A diel (24-h) cycle with daytime atmospheric concentrations higher than nighttime concentrations by a factor of 1.5–3 was observed for several low molecular weight polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in remote areas of the tropical South Atlantic during a cruise in October–November 2005. In contrast, high molecular weight PCBs and PAHs did not display diurnal variability. A model which has successfully explained diel variability of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) over land could not reproduce the observed diel cycle by considering variability in temperature, atmospheric OH radical concentrations, atmospheric boundary layer height and wind speed as causal factors. We used the model to conduct two bounding scenarios to explore the possibility that phytoplankton biomass turn-over in the surface ocean drives the observed variability in air concentrations. The model could only qualitatively reproduce the field observations of diel variability for low chlorinated PCB congeners when the ocean acts as a source of pollutants to the atmosphere, and when variability in biomass drives variability in the capacity of the surface ocean.
    Atmosphere. 08/2014; 5:622-634.
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    ABSTRACT: Plastic resin pellets collected at 11 beaches covering the whole Ghanaian coastline were analyzed for polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). PCB concentrations (∑13 congeners) were higher in Accra, capital city, and Tema (39-69ng/g-pellets) than those in rural coastal towns (1-15ng/g-pellets) which are close to global background, indicating local inputs of PCBs. River sediments were also analyzed for PCBs together with molecular markers. Sedimentary PCBs concentrations were highest at a site (AR02) downstream of an electronic waste (e-waste) scrapyard. At the site (AR02), concentration of linear alkylbenzenes (LABs), a marker of municipal wastewater, was lower than another site (AR03) which is located at the downstream of downtown Accra. This result suggests that PCBs are introduced more to the river from the e-waste site than from activities in downtown Accra. PAHs concentrations were relatively higher in urban areas with strong petrogenic signature. Abundance of triphenylbenzenes suggested plastic combustion near e-waste scrapyard.
    Marine Pollution Bulletin 07/2014; · 2.79 Impact Factor


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