Article

Atmospheric PCB concentrations at Terra Nova Bay, Antarctica

University of Florence, Florens, Tuscany, Italy
Environmental Science and Technology (Impact Factor: 5.48). 12/2005; 39(24):9406-11. DOI: 10.1021/es0510921
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Concentrations of gas-phase polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs) were studied over an austral summer at a site in Terra Nova Bay, Antarctica. Gas-phase concentrations of individual PCB congeners in the atmosphere of Terra Nova Bay ranged from below the detection limit to 0.25 pg m(-3), with a mean concentration of sigmaPCB of 1.06 pg m(-3). The PCB profile was dominated by lower-chlorinated PCB congeners; in fact >78% of the total PCB content was due to congeners with 1-4 chlorine atoms and only about 10% with 5-7 chlorines, whereas higher-chlorinated PCB congeners were below detection limits. The mean sigmaPCB concentration obtained in this study were lower than those reported in previous Antarctic studies. Temporal concentration profiles of sigmaPCB do not correspond to seasonal temperature changes. In consideration of the low PCB concentrations observed, the studies with the wind roses, the regression between In P(PCB) and T(-1), and the distribution of congeners, we can hypothesize that PCB local source contributions are not very important, whereas long-distance transport is the prevalent factor bringing PCBs to Terra Nova Bay.

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