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Article

Qualitative Study on the Observations of Emissions, Transport, and the Influence of Climatic Factors from Sugarcane Burning: A South African Perspective

1
Earth Observation Directorate, South African National Space Agency, Pretoria 0001, South Africa
2
School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg 2050, South Africa
3
South African Weather Service, Private Bag X097, Pretoria 0001, South Africa
4
School of Chemistry and Physics, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 4041, South Africa
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Isidro A. Pérez and M. Ángeles García
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(14), 7672; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18147672
Received: 28 June 2021 / Revised: 16 July 2021 / Accepted: 16 July 2021 / Published: 19 July 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Air Pollution Meteorology Research)
There are two methods of harvesting sugarcane—manual or mechanical. Manual harvesting requires the burning of the standing sugarcane crop. Burning of the crop results in the emission of aerosols and harmful trace gases into the atmosphere. This work makes use of a long-term dataset (1980–2019) to study (1) the atmospheric spatial and vertical distribution of pollutants; (2) the spatial distribution and temporal change of biomass emissions; and (3) the impact/influence of climatic factors on temporal change in atmospheric pollutant loading and biomass emissions over the Mpumalanga and KwaZulu Natal provinces in South Africa, where sugarcane farming is rife. Black carbon (BC) and sulfur dioxide (SO2) are two dominant pollutants in the JJA and SON seasons due to sugarcane burning. Overall, there was an increasing trend in the emissions of BC, SO2, and carbon dioxide (CO2) from 1980 to 2019. Climatic conditions, such as warm temperature, high wind speed, dry conditions in the JJA, and SON season, favor the intensity and spread of the fire, which is controlled. The emitted pollutants are transported to neighboring countries and can travel over the Atlantic Ocean, as far as ~6600 km from the source site. View Full-Text
Keywords: smoke; black carbon; HYSPLIT model; biomass burning; meteorology; sequential Mann–Kendall smoke; black carbon; HYSPLIT model; biomass burning; meteorology; sequential Mann–Kendall
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MDPI and ACS Style

Shikwambana, L.; Ncipha, X.; Sangeetha, S.K.; Sivakumar, V.; Mhangara, P. Qualitative Study on the Observations of Emissions, Transport, and the Influence of Climatic Factors from Sugarcane Burning: A South African Perspective. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 7672. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18147672

AMA Style

Shikwambana L, Ncipha X, Sangeetha SK, Sivakumar V, Mhangara P. Qualitative Study on the Observations of Emissions, Transport, and the Influence of Climatic Factors from Sugarcane Burning: A South African Perspective. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(14):7672. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18147672

Chicago/Turabian Style

Shikwambana, Lerato, Xolile Ncipha, Sivakumar K. Sangeetha, Venkataraman Sivakumar, and Paidamwoyo Mhangara. 2021. "Qualitative Study on the Observations of Emissions, Transport, and the Influence of Climatic Factors from Sugarcane Burning: A South African Perspective" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 14: 7672. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18147672

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