| January 2017
Read about VicFalls 2018 and fieldwork in the Copperbelt continue reading...
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Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
02 July 2018
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Latest on-line papers from the SEGH journal: Environmental Geochemistry and Health
Little is known about the variation of Chinese childrenâ€™s exposure to arsenic by geography, age, gender, and other potential factors. The main objective of this study was to investigate the total arsenic concentration in Chinese childrenâ€™s urine by geographic locations, ages, and genders. In total, 259 24-h urine samples were collected from 210 2- to 12-year-old children in China and analyzed for total arsenic and creatinine concentrations. The results showed that the upper limit (upper limit of the 90% confidence interval for the 97.5 fractile) was 27.51Â Âµg/L or 55.88Â Âµg/g creatinine for Chinese children. The total urinary arsenic levels were significantly different for children in Guangdong, Hubei, and Gansu provinces (PÂ <Â 0.05), where the upper limits were 24.29, 58.70, and 44.29Â Âµg/g creatinine, respectively. In addition, the total urinary arsenic levels were higher for 2- to 7-year-old children than for 7- to 12-year-old children (PÂ <Â 0.05; the upper limits were 59.06 and 44.29Â Âµg/g creatinine, respectively) and higher for rural children than for urban children (PÂ <Â 0.05; the upper limits were 59.06 and 50.44Â Âµg/g creatinine, respectively). The total urinary arsenic levels for boys were not significantly different from those for girls (PÂ >Â 0.05), although the level for boys (the upper limit was 59.30Â Âµg/g) was slightly higher than that for girls (the upper limit was 58.64Â Âµg/g creatinine). Because the total urinary arsenic concentrations are significantly different for general populations of children in different locations and age groups, the reference level of total urinary arsenic might be dependent on the geographic site and the childâ€™s age.
Spatial distribution, seasonal variation and potential inhalation risks of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) were investigated in the atmosphere of Beijing, using passive air samplers equipped with polyurethane foam disks. Concentrations of Î£PCDD/Fs, Î£PCBs and Î£PBDEs ranged from 8.4 to 179Â fg WHO2005-TEQ/m3, 38.6â€“139 and 1.5â€“176Â pg/m3, respectively. PCDFs showed higher air concentrations than those of PCDDs, indicating the influence of industrial activities and other combustion processes. The non-Aroclor congener, PCB-11, was detected in air (12.3â€“99.4Â pg/m3) and dominated the PCB congener profiles (61.7â€“71.5% to âˆ‘PCBs). The congener patterns of PBDEs showed signatures from both penta-BDE and octa-BDE products. Levels of PCDD/Fs, PCBs and PBDEs at the industrial and residential sites were higher than those at rural site, indicating human activities in urban area as potential sources. Higher air concentrations of PCDD/Fs, PCBs and PBDEs were observed in summer, which could be associated with atmospheric deposition process, re-volatilization from soil surface and volatilization from use of technical products, respectively. Results of inhalation exposure and cancer risk showed that atmospheric PCDD/Fs, dioxin-like PCBs and PBDEs did not cause high risks to the local residents of Beijing. This study provides further aid in evaluating emission sources, influencing factors and potential inhalation risks of the persistent organic pollutants to human health in mega-cities of China.
The major frequent contaminants in soil are heavy metals which may be responsible for detrimental health effects. The remediation of heavy metals in contaminated soils is considered as one of the most complicated tasks. Among different technologies, in situ immobilization of metals has received a great deal of attention and turned out to be a promising solution for soil remediation. In this review, remediation methods for removal of heavy metals in soil are explored with an emphasis on the in situ immobilization technique of metal(loid)s. Besides, the immobilization technique in contaminated soils is evaluated through the manipulation of the bioavailability of heavy metals using a range of soil amendment conditions. This technique is expected to efficiently alleviate the risk of groundwater contamination, plant uptake, and exposure to other living organisms. The efficacy of several amendments (e.g., red mud, biochar, phosphate rock) has been examined to emphasize the need for the simultaneous measurement of leaching and the phytoavailability of heavy metals. In addition, some amendments that are used in this technique are inexpensive and readily available in large quantities because they have been derived from bio-products or industrial by-products (e.g., biochar, red mud, and steel slag). Among different amendments, iron-rich compounds and biochars show high efficiency to remediate multi-metal contaminated soils. Thereupon, immobilization technique can be considered a preferable option as it is inexpensive and easily applicable to large quantities of contaminants derived from various sources.