Sources of Mercury Wet Deposition in Eastern Ohio, USA

University of Michigan Air Quality Laboratory, Ann Arbor 48109, USA.
Environmental Science and Technology (Impact Factor: 5.33). 11/2006; 40(19):5874-81. DOI: 10.1021/es060377q
Source: PubMed


In the fall of 2002, an enhanced air monitoring site was established in Steubenville, Ohio as part of a multi-year comprehensive mercury monitoring and source apportionment study to investigate the impact of local and regional coal combustion sources on atmospheric mercury deposition in the Ohio River Valley. This study deployed advanced monitoring instrumentation, utilized innovative analytical techniques, and applied state-of-the-art statistical receptor models. This paper presents wet deposition data and source apportionment modeling results from daily event precipitation samples collected during the calendar years 2003-2004. The volume-weighted mean mercury concentrations for 2003 and 2004 were 14.0 and 13.5 ng L(-1), respectively, and total annual mercury wet deposition was 13.5 and 19.7 microg m(-2), respectively. Two new EPA-implemented multivariate statistical models, positive matrix factorization (PMF) and Unmix, were applied to the data set and six sources were identified. The dominant contributor to the mercury wet deposition was found by both models to be coal combustion (approximately 70%). Meteorological analysis also indicated that a majority of the mercury deposition found at the Steubenville site was due to local and regional sources.

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    • "Wet mercury deposition was estimated by the National Atmospheric Deposition Program as 15.5, 9.9 and 11.4 lg m -2 in 2006, 2007 and 2008, respectively. Elevated mercury levels in the park are attributed to both nearby coal-fired plants as well as more distant sources (Keeler et al. 2006), although Valente et al. (2007) did not find atmospheric mercury levels significantly higher than global trends in a nearby mid-elevation (813 m) site just west of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. We sampled birds from multiple elevations and habitats, but focused primarily on birds breeding in the high-elevation ([1,500 m) Southern Appalachian red spruce (Picea rubens)-Fraser fir ( "
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