Chemical speciation of trace metals emitted from Indonesian peat fires for...

Betha, R., M. Pradani, P. Lestari, U. M. Joshi, J. Reid, and R. Balasubramanian (2013), Chemical speciation of trace metals emitted from Indonesian peat fires for health risk assessment, Atmos. Res., 122, 571-578, doi:10.1016/j.atmosres.2012.05.024.

Regional smoke-induced haze in Southeast Asia, caused by uncontrolled forest and peat fires in Indonesia, is of major environmental and health concern. In this study, we estimated carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic health risk due to exposure to fine particles (PM2.5) as emitted from peat fires at Kalimantan, Indonesia. For the health risk analysis, chemical speciation (exchangeable, reducible, oxidizable, and residual fractions) of 12 trace metals (Al, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb, Ti, V and Zn) in PM2.5 was studied. Results indicate that Al, Fe and Ti together accounted for a major fraction of total metal concentrations (~ 83%) in PM2.5 emissions in the immediate vicinity of peat fires. Chemical speciation reveals that a major proportion of most of the metals, with the exception of Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni and Cd, was present in the residual fraction. The exchangeable fraction of metals, which represents their bioavailability, could play a major role in inducing human health effects of PM2.5. This fraction contained carcinogenic metals such as Cd (39.2 ng m− 3) and Ni (249.3 ng m − 3) that exceeded their WHO guideline values by several factors. Health risk estimates suggest that exposure to PM2.5 emissions in the vicinity of peat fires poses serious health threats.

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Interdisciplinary Science Program (IDS)