Special Issue "Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region"

A special issue of Atmosphere (ISSN 2073-4433). This special issue belongs to the section "Air Quality".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2018) | Viewed by 27431

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Hajime Akimoto
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
National Institute for Environmental Studies, Tsukuba, Japan
Interests: atmospheric reaction chemistry; regional air pollution by ozone and aerosols; science and policy interface on SLCP co-control

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Over the last couple of decades, the Asia-Pacific region has emitted the highest amounts of air pollutants and greenhouse gases in the world, which causes serious urban, and regional air pollution as well as contributing to regional and global climate change. The purpose of this Special Issue is to provide updated information on the scientific evidence regarding the current situation of air quality in mega-cities and other urban/rural areas in the Asia-Pacific region, and its impacts on human health and ecosystems. We also aim to investigate the air pollution–climate interaction, and to enhance policy dialogue through discussion on air pollution mitigation measures and co-beneficial control of air pollution and climate change.

Studies on temporal and spatial variations of PM2.5, O3, PAHs and other pollutants including their precursors, and their emissions, transport and source allocation, by means of field observation and chemical-transport modelling, are highly welcome for this issue, as well as policy-related studies including the co-control strategy of short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs).

This Special Issue aims to highlight air pollution in the Asia-Pacific region, which has been a focus of international concern regarding the atmospheric environment in recent years.

Prof. Dr. Hajime Akimoto
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Atmosphere is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • air pollution
  • Asia-Pacific
  • PM2.5
  • O3
  • PAHs
  • SLCP

Published Papers (9 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Review

Article
Pollution Characteristics and Policy Actions on Fine Particulate Matter in a Growing Asian Economy: The Case of Bangkok Metropolitan Region
Atmosphere 2019, 10(5), 227; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10050227 - 27 Apr 2019
Cited by 27 | Viewed by 3774
Abstract
Air pollution is becoming a prominent social problem in fast-growing Asian economies. Taking the Bangkok Metropolitan Region (BMR) as a case, we conducted an observational study of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and acid deposition, consisting of their continuous monitoring at two [...] Read more.
Air pollution is becoming a prominent social problem in fast-growing Asian economies. Taking the Bangkok Metropolitan Region (BMR) as a case, we conducted an observational study of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and acid deposition, consisting of their continuous monitoring at two sites. To find the major contributing sources of PM2.5, the PM composition data were analyzed by a receptor modeling approach while the pollution load from BMR sources to the air was characterized by an emission inventory. Our data show generally alarming levels of PM2.5 in the region, of which transportation and biomass burning are two major sources. In this paper, we present a general overview of our observational findings, contrast the scientific information with the policy context of air quality management in BMR, and discuss policy implications. In BMR, where a set of conventional regulatory instruments on air quality management are already in place, a solution for the air pollution problem should lie in a combination of air quality regulation and other policies, such as energy and agricultural policies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Heterogeneous Uptake of N2O5 in Sand Dust and Urban Aerosols Observed during the Dry Season in Beijing
Atmosphere 2019, 10(4), 204; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10040204 - 18 Apr 2019
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2636
Abstract
The uptake of dinitrogen pentoxide (N2O5) on aerosols affects the nocturnal removal of NOx and particulate nitrate formation in the atmosphere. This study investigates N2O5 uptake processes using field observations from an urban site in [...] Read more.
The uptake of dinitrogen pentoxide (N2O5) on aerosols affects the nocturnal removal of NOx and particulate nitrate formation in the atmosphere. This study investigates N2O5 uptake processes using field observations from an urban site in Beijing during April–May 2017, a period characterized by dry weather conditions. For the first time, a very large N2O5 uptake rate (k(N2O5) up to ~0.01 s−1) was observed during a sand storm event, and the uptake coefficient (γ(N2O5)) was estimated to be 0.044. The γ(N2O5) in urban air masses was also determined and exhibited moderate correlation (r = 0.68) with aerosol volume to surface ratio (Va/Sa), but little relation to aerosol water, nitrate, and chloride, a finding that contrasts with previous results. Several commonly used parameterizations of γ(N2O5) underestimated the field-derived γ(N2O5). A new parameterization is suggested for dry conditions, which considers the effect of Va/Sa, temperature, and relative humidity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
A Comparative Study of Stack Emissions from Straight-Line and Zigzag Brick Kilns in Nepal
Atmosphere 2019, 10(3), 107; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10030107 - 01 Mar 2019
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 4041
Abstract
Nepal has approximately 1000 operational brick kilns, which contribute significantly to ambient air pollution. They also account for 1.81% of the total bricks produced in the South Asian region. Little is known about their emissions, which are consequently not represented in regional/global emission [...] Read more.
Nepal has approximately 1000 operational brick kilns, which contribute significantly to ambient air pollution. They also account for 1.81% of the total bricks produced in the South Asian region. Little is known about their emissions, which are consequently not represented in regional/global emission inventories. This study compared emissions from seven brick kilns. Four were Fixed Chimney Bull’s Trench Kilns (FCBTKs) and three were Induced-Draught Zigzag Kilns (IDZKs). The concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2), sulfur dioxide (SO2), black carbon (BC), and particulate matter (PM) with a diameter less than 2.5 µm (PM2.5) were measured. The respective emission factors (EFs) were estimated using the carbon mass balance method. The average fuel-based EF for CO2, SO2, PM2.5, and BC were estimated as 1633 ± 134, 22 ± 22, 3.8 ± 2.6 and 0.6 ± 0.2 g per kg, respectively, for all FCBTKs. Those for IDZKs were 1981 ± 232, 24 ± 22, 3.1 ± 1, and 0.4 ± 0.2 g per kg, respectively. Overall, the study found that converting the technology from straight-line kilns to zigzag kilns can reduce PM2.5 emissions by ~20% and BC emissions by ~30%, based on emission factor estimates of per kilogram of fuel. While considering per kilogram of fired brick, emission reductions were approximately 40% for PM2.5 and 55% for BC, but this definitely depends on proper stacking and firing procedures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Testing Iron Stable Isotope Ratios as a Signature of Biomass Burning
Atmosphere 2019, 10(2), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10020076 - 12 Feb 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1796
Abstract
Biomass burning is an important source of soluble Fe transported to the open ocean; however, its exact contribution remains unclear. Iron isotope ratios can be used as a tracer because Fe emitted by combustion can yield very low Fe isotope ratios due to [...] Read more.
Biomass burning is an important source of soluble Fe transported to the open ocean; however, its exact contribution remains unclear. Iron isotope ratios can be used as a tracer because Fe emitted by combustion can yield very low Fe isotope ratios due to isotope fractionation during evaporation processes. However, data on Fe isotope ratios of aerosol particles emitted during biomass burning are lacking. We collected size-fractionated aerosol samples before, during, and after a biomass burning event and compared their Fe isotope ratios. On the basis of the concentrations of several elements and Fe species, Fe emitted during the event mainly comprised suspended soil particles in all the size fractions. Iron isotope ratios of fine particles before and after the event were low due to the influence of other anthropogenic combustion sources, but they were closer to the crustal value during the event because of the influence of Fe from suspended soil. Although Fe isotope ratios of soluble Fe were also measured to reduce Fe from soil components, we did not find low isotope signals. Results suggested that Fe isotope ratios could not identify Fe emitted by biomass burning, and low Fe isotope ratios are found only when the combustion temperature is high enough for a sufficient amount of Fe to evaporate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Marginal Benefit to South Asian Economies from SO2 Emissions Mitigation and Subsequent Increase in Monsoon Rainfall
Atmosphere 2019, 10(2), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10020070 - 08 Feb 2019
Viewed by 1640
Abstract
Sulphate aerosols are dominated by SO2 emissions from coal-burning for the Indian electricity sector and they are thought to have a short term but significant, negative impact on South Asian Summer Monsoon rainfall. This reduction in precipitation in turn can lead to [...] Read more.
Sulphate aerosols are dominated by SO2 emissions from coal-burning for the Indian electricity sector and they are thought to have a short term but significant, negative impact on South Asian Summer Monsoon rainfall. This reduction in precipitation in turn can lead to reduced economic outputs, primarily through smaller agricultural yields. By bringing together estimates of (a) the impact of sulphate aerosols on precipitation and (b) the observed relationship between monsoon rainfall and GDP, we present a methodology to estimate the possible financial cost of this effect on the Indian economy and on its agricultural sector. Our preliminary estimate is that the derived benefits could be large enough that around 50% of India’s SO2 emissions could be economically mitigated at no cost or net benefit, although it should be noted that the large uncertainties in the underlying relationships mean that the overall uncertainty is also large. Comparison of the 1952–1981 and 1982–2011 periods indicates that the Indian economy may now be more resilient to variability of the monsoon rainfall. As such, a case could be made for action to reduce SO2 emissions, particularly in the crucial monsoon period. This would have a significant, positive effect on a crucial and large sector in India’s economy and the effects would be visible almost instantly. The recent growth in renewable energy sources in India and the consequent, reduced increase in coal burning means that further financial costs have already been avoided. This impact should be further investigated so that it can be included in cost-benefit analyses of different fuel types in the region. The significant uncertainties associated with these calculations are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Characterizing Emissions from Agricultural Diesel Pumps in the Terai Region of Nepal
Atmosphere 2019, 10(2), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10020056 - 01 Feb 2019
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2920
Abstract
Diesel irrigation pumps are a source of air pollution in the Indo-Gangetic Plain (IGP). The environmental implications of these pumps are often overlooked and very rarely addressed in the IGP. Few studies in the past have estimated the amount of diesel consumed by [...] Read more.
Diesel irrigation pumps are a source of air pollution in the Indo-Gangetic Plain (IGP). The environmental implications of these pumps are often overlooked and very rarely addressed in the IGP. Few studies in the past have estimated the amount of diesel consumed by irrigation pumps in the IGP or other proxy variables to estimate the amount of emissions. A considerable amount of uncertainty remains in calculating emission factors (EF) using real-time measurements. We measured pollutants from nine diesel irrigation pumps in the southern ‘Terai’ belt of Nepal. Fuel-based EF were then estimated using the carbon mass balance method. The average EF for fine particulate matter (PM2.5), CO2, CO and black carbon (BC) were found to be 22.11 ± 3.71, 2218.10 ± 26.8, 275 ± 17.18 and 2.54 ± 0.71 g/L, respectively. Depending upon the pump characteristics (age, design, make, hours used, etc.) and fuel mixtures, the EF of PM2.5, BC and CO had larger inter-variability. This study provides estimates for an under-represented source of ambient air pollution which will assist in the development of better emission inventories and informed policy making. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Characteristics of Carbonaceous PM2.5 in a Small Residential City in Korea
Atmosphere 2018, 9(12), 490; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9120490 - 11 Dec 2018
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1730
Abstract
PM2.5 has been a serious issue in South Korea not only in urban and industrial areas but also in rural and background areas. In this study, PM2.5 and its carbonaceous compounds including organic carbon (OC), elemental carbon (EC), water-soluble organic carbon [...] Read more.
PM2.5 has been a serious issue in South Korea not only in urban and industrial areas but also in rural and background areas. In this study, PM2.5 and its carbonaceous compounds including organic carbon (OC), elemental carbon (EC), water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC), and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were collected and analyzed in a small residential city. The PM2.5 concentration frequently exceeded the national ambient air quality standard during the spring and the winter, which often occurred concurrently with fog and mist events. Over the whole sampling period, both OC and the OC/EC ratio were considerably higher than the ratios in other cities in Korea, which suggests that sources other than vehicular emissions were important. The top 10% of OC/EC ratio samples could be explained by regional and long-range transport because there was a strong correlation between primary and secondary organic carbon. However, biomass combustion was likely to account for the consistently high OC concentration due to a strong correlation between WSOC and primary OC as well as the diagnostic ratio results of PAHs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Emission of Air Pollutants from Rice Residue Open Burning in Thailand, 2018
Atmosphere 2018, 9(11), 449; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9110449 - 15 Nov 2018
Cited by 43 | Viewed by 4011
Abstract
Crop residue burning negatively impacts both the environment and human health, whether in the aspect of air pollution, regional and global climate change, or transboundary air pollution. Accordingly, this study aims to assess the level of air pollutant emissions caused by the rice [...] Read more.
Crop residue burning negatively impacts both the environment and human health, whether in the aspect of air pollution, regional and global climate change, or transboundary air pollution. Accordingly, this study aims to assess the level of air pollutant emissions caused by the rice residue open burning activities in 2018, by analyzing the remote sensing information and country specific data. This research also aims to analyze the trend of particulate matter 10 microns or less in diameter (PM10) concentration air quality sites in provinces with large paddy rice planting areas from 2010–2017. According to the results, 61.87 megaton (Mt) of rice residue were generated, comprising 21.35 Mt generated from the irrigated fields and 40.53 Mt generated from the rain-fed field. Only 23.0% of the total rice residue generated were subject to open burning—of which nearly 32% were actually burned in the fields. The emissions from such rice residue burning consisted of: 5.34 ± 2.33 megaton (Mt) of CO2, 44 ± 14 kiloton (kt) of CH4, 422 ± 179 kt of CO, 2 ± 2 kt of NOX, 2 ± 2 kt of SO2, 38 ± 22 kt of PM2.5, 43 ± 29 kt of PM10, 2 ± 1 kt of black carbon (BC), and 14 ± 5 kt of organic carbon (OC). According to the air quality trends, the results shows the higher level of PM10 concentration was due to the agricultural burning activities, as reflected in the higher monthly averages of the months with the agricultural burning, by around 1.9–2.1 times. The result also shows the effect of government’s policy for farmers on the crop burning activities and air quality trends. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Review

Jump to: Research

Review
Experience from Integrated Air Quality Management in the Mexico City Metropolitan Area and Singapore
Atmosphere 2019, 10(9), 512; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10090512 - 31 Aug 2019
Cited by 43 | Viewed by 4259
Abstract
More than half of the world’s population now lives in cities as a result of unprecedented urbanization during the second half of the 20th century. The urban population is projected to increase to 68% by 2050, with most of the increase occurring in [...] Read more.
More than half of the world’s population now lives in cities as a result of unprecedented urbanization during the second half of the 20th century. The urban population is projected to increase to 68% by 2050, with most of the increase occurring in Asia and Africa. Population growth and increased energy consumption in urban areas lead to high levels of atmospheric pollutants that harm human health, cause regional haze, damage crops, contribute to climate change, and ultimately threaten the society’s sustainability. This article reviews the air quality and compares the policies implemented in the Mexico City Metropolitan Area (MCMA) and Singapore and offers insights into the complexity of managing air pollution to protect public health and the environment. While the differences in the governance, economics, and culture of the two cities greatly influence the decision-making process, both have made much progress in reducing concentrations of harmful pollutants by implementing comprehensive integrated air quality management programs. The experience and the lessons learned from the MCMA and Singapore can be valuable for other urban centers, especially in the fast-growing Asia-Pacific region confronting similar air pollution problems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the Asia-Pacific Region)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop