Next Article in Journal
Impact of Organic Solvents and Environmental Pollutants on the Physiological Function in Petrol Filling Workers
Previous Article in Journal
Second Hand Smoke Exposure and Excess Heart Disease and Lung Cancer Mortality among Hospital Staff in Crete, Greece: A Case Study
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2008, 5(3), 130-138; doi:10.3390/ijerph5030130

Source Characterization of Volatile Organic Compounds Affecting the Air Quality in a Coastal Urban Area of South Texas

Department of Environmental Engineering, Frank H. Dotterweich College of Engineering, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, Kingsville, Texas, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 April 2008 / Accepted: 10 July 2008 / Published: 30 September 2008
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [438 KB, uploaded 19 June 2014]   |  


Selected Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) emitted from various anthropogenic sources including industries and motor vehicles act as primary precursors of ozone, while some VOC are classified as air toxic compounds. Significantly large VOC emission sources impact the air quality in Corpus Christi, Texas. This urban area is located in a semi-arid region of South Texas and is home to several large petrochemical refineries and industrial facilities along a busy ship-channel. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has setup two continuous ambient monitoring stations (CAMS 633 and 634) along the ship channel to monitor VOC concentrations in the urban atmosphere. The hourly concentrations of 46 VOC compounds were acquired from TCEQ for a comprehensive source apportionment study. The primary objective of this study was to identify and quantify the sources affecting the ambient air quality within this urban airshed. Principal Component Analysis/Absolute Principal Component Scores (PCA/APCS) was applied to the dataset. PCA identified five possible sources accounting for 69% of the total variance affecting the VOC levels measured at CAMS 633 and six possible sources affecting CAMS 634 accounting for 75% of the total variance. APCS identified natural gas emissions to be the major source contributor at CAMS 633 and it accounted for 70% of the measured VOC concentrations. The other major sources identified at CAMS 633 included flare emissions (12%), fugitive gasoline emissions (9%), refinery operations (7%), and vehicle exhaust (2%). At CAMS 634, natural gas sources were identified as the major source category contributing to 31% of the observed VOC. The other sources affecting this site included: refinery operations (24%), flare emissions (22%), secondary industrial processes (12%), fugitive gasoline emissions (8%) and vehicle exhaust (3%). View Full-Text
Keywords: Volatile organic compounds; PCA/APCS; source apportionment; urban airshed Volatile organic compounds; PCA/APCS; source apportionment; urban airshed

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Sanchez, M.; Karnae, S.; John, K. Source Characterization of Volatile Organic Compounds Affecting the Air Quality in a Coastal Urban Area of South Texas. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2008, 5, 130-138.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top