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A study of the spatial distribution patterns of airborne polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in crowberry (Empetrum nigrum) in Ilulissat, Greenland

Kronik, Oskar Munk ; Prothmann, Jens LU ; Troché, Gaudry ; Svensmark, Bo ; Nielsen, Nikoline Juul and Christensen, Jan H. (2021) In Environmental Science and Pollution Research
Abstract

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are produced by anthropogenic activities, such as traffic and domestic heating. Due to their adverse effects to humans and natural habitats, the presence of PAHs in the environment needs to be monitored. Plants are known as natural accumulators of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and can therefore be used for the monitoring of PAHs emitted into the environment. Contamination by PAHs also occurs in the Arctic such as Greenland due to long-range transport through air. However, as anthropogenic activities in the Arctic are increasing, there is a need to investigate the distribution of PAHs due to local emission sources. In this study, we present a systematic sampling approach to identify the... (More)

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are produced by anthropogenic activities, such as traffic and domestic heating. Due to their adverse effects to humans and natural habitats, the presence of PAHs in the environment needs to be monitored. Plants are known as natural accumulators of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and can therefore be used for the monitoring of PAHs emitted into the environment. Contamination by PAHs also occurs in the Arctic such as Greenland due to long-range transport through air. However, as anthropogenic activities in the Arctic are increasing, there is a need to investigate the distribution of PAHs due to local emission sources. In this study, we present a systematic sampling approach to identify the influence of PAH sources in an area next to the town of Ilulissat in Greenland. Composite crowberry samples have been collected north of Ilulissat, where the town itself, an incineration site and Ilulissat airport are possible emission sources for PAHs. Matrix solid-phase extraction was used for the extraction of PAHs and the chemical analysis was performed by gas chromatography with mass spectrometry detection (GC-MS). In total, 18 out of 19 investigated PAHs could be detected in Empetrum nigrum in a concentration range of 0.69 to 93.01 μg/kgdry weight. Higher concentrations for most of the targeted PAHs were found close to the suspected emission sources and also along the road connecting them. For pyrene, the correlation between the concentration and the distance from the emission sources could be modelled and visualized using a two-dimensional exponential variogram and ordinary kriging. The range in which the samples were spatially correlated was approximately 500 m. Our results show that local emission sources contribute to the spatial distribution patterns of PAHs. Monitoring of pollution by airborne PAHs is therefore needed even in areas far from major pollution sources such as Ilulissat, Greenland. E. nigrum showed to be a feasible species for biomonitoring of PAHs due to its large abundance in the sampling area and its widespread availability in the Artic region.

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author
; ; ; ; and
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
epub
subject
keywords
Biomonitoring, Ilulissat, Kriging, Matrix solid-phase dispersion, PAHs, Variogram
in
Environmental Science and Pollution Research
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • pmid:33442805
  • scopus:85099466735
ISSN
0944-1344
DOI
10.1007/s11356-021-12365-3
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
1b2fc935-b0c1-4457-b1c1-9b6d21cff21a
date added to LUP
2021-01-29 11:34:17
date last changed
2021-03-24 04:11:36
@article{1b2fc935-b0c1-4457-b1c1-9b6d21cff21a,
  abstract     = {<p>Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are produced by anthropogenic activities, such as traffic and domestic heating. Due to their adverse effects to humans and natural habitats, the presence of PAHs in the environment needs to be monitored. Plants are known as natural accumulators of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and can therefore be used for the monitoring of PAHs emitted into the environment. Contamination by PAHs also occurs in the Arctic such as Greenland due to long-range transport through air. However, as anthropogenic activities in the Arctic are increasing, there is a need to investigate the distribution of PAHs due to local emission sources. In this study, we present a systematic sampling approach to identify the influence of PAH sources in an area next to the town of Ilulissat in Greenland. Composite crowberry samples have been collected north of Ilulissat, where the town itself, an incineration site and Ilulissat airport are possible emission sources for PAHs. Matrix solid-phase extraction was used for the extraction of PAHs and the chemical analysis was performed by gas chromatography with mass spectrometry detection (GC-MS). In total, 18 out of 19 investigated PAHs could be detected in Empetrum nigrum in a concentration range of 0.69 to 93.01 μg/kg<sub>dry weight</sub>. Higher concentrations for most of the targeted PAHs were found close to the suspected emission sources and also along the road connecting them. For pyrene, the correlation between the concentration and the distance from the emission sources could be modelled and visualized using a two-dimensional exponential variogram and ordinary kriging. The range in which the samples were spatially correlated was approximately 500 m. Our results show that local emission sources contribute to the spatial distribution patterns of PAHs. Monitoring of pollution by airborne PAHs is therefore needed even in areas far from major pollution sources such as Ilulissat, Greenland. E. nigrum showed to be a feasible species for biomonitoring of PAHs due to its large abundance in the sampling area and its widespread availability in the Artic region.</p>},
  author       = {Kronik, Oskar Munk and Prothmann, Jens and Troché, Gaudry and Svensmark, Bo and Nielsen, Nikoline Juul and Christensen, Jan H.},
  issn         = {0944-1344},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {01},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {Environmental Science and Pollution Research},
  title        = {A study of the spatial distribution patterns of airborne polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in crowberry (Empetrum nigrum) in Ilulissat, Greenland},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-021-12365-3},
  doi          = {10.1007/s11356-021-12365-3},
  year         = {2021},
}