Special Issue "Air Toxics"

A special issue of Toxics (ISSN 2305-6304).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2016).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Andrey Khlystov
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Desert Research Institute, Division of Atmospheric Sciences, 2215 Raggio Parkway, Reno, NV 89512, USA
Interests: air toxics; organic air pollutants; semi-volatile organic compounds; air sampling methods; organic pollutant analysis
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Toxic air pollutants, also known as hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), are those chemicals that are known or suspected to cause cancer or other serious health effects, such as reproductive effects or birth defects, or have adverse environmental effects. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) designated 187 pollutants as air toxics (http://www.epa.gov/air/toxicair/newtoxics.html), although about 33 of them present the greatest threat to public health in the largest number of urban areas (http://www.epa.gov/ttn/atw/nata/34poll.html). In addition to HAPs, persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are another class of toxic chemicals that adversely affect human health and the environment around the world (although some of the compounds on HAPs and POPs list overlap). Because they are very stable and can be transported by wind and water, most POPs generated in one country can, and do, affect people and wildlife far from where they are used and released. Under the United Nation treaty, signed in Stockholm in 2001 (known as the Stockholm Convention), over 90 countries agreed to reduce or eliminate the production, use, and/or release of 12 key POPs and specified a scientific review process that has led to the addition of other POPs chemicals of global concern. Since then, nine new POPs have been added to the initial list and several others are currently under review (http://chm.pops.int/Home/tabid/2121/Default.aspx).

In this Special Issue “Air Toxics” we invite authors to submit original manuscripts regarding monitoring, ambient concentrations, emission sources, exposure measurements, and health and environmental effects of air toxics (including diesel particular matter and polycyclic aromatic compounds) and persistent organic pollutants.

Prof. Dr. Barbara Zielinska
Dr. Andrey Khlystov
Guest Editors

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 papers will be 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. Toxics 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 1600 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 toxics
  • hazardous air pollutants (HAPs)
  • persisted organic pollutants (POPs)
  • monitoring
  • ambient concentrations
  • exposure
  • health effects
  • environmental effects
  • emission sources

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Article
Air Quality and Hospital Outcomes in Emergency Medical Admissions with Respiratory Disease
Toxics 2016, 4(3), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics4030015 - 05 Aug 2016
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1837
Abstract
Background: The impact of very low levels of air pollutants, particulate matter (PM10) and sulfur dioxide (SO2) concentrations, on human health is not well characterized. We examined the outcomes (30-day in-hospital mortality) of emergency hospitalizations of respiratory patients and the level [...] Read more.
Background: The impact of very low levels of air pollutants, particulate matter (PM10) and sulfur dioxide (SO2) concentrations, on human health is not well characterized. We examined the outcomes (30-day in-hospital mortality) of emergency hospitalizations of respiratory patients and the level of local pollutants on the day of admission. Methods: All emergency admissions (82,421 episodes in 44,660 patients) were recorded over 13 years (2002–2014) and mortality assessed. The median interquartile ranges (IQR) age was 64.5 (43.9, 78.5) years with the proportion of males at 48.5%. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression was used to examine relationships between pollutant concentration (PM10 and SO2) and odds ratio (OR) for 30-day in hospital death, after adjustment for acuity. Results: Mortality related to each pollutant variable assessed (as quintiles of increasing atmospheric concentration). For PM10 mortality, the highest two quintiles concentrations were significantly increased (p < 0.001) with univariate ORs of 1.30. For SO2, the ORs were 1.32, 1.39, and 1.46, for the top three quintiles. There was also a strong relationship between the underlying respiratory function; with forced expiratory volume (FEV1) in 1 second (FEV1) ≥ 2.0L at the lowest PM10 quintile, mortality was 6.5% (95% CI: 6.1, 6.9) increasing to 9.5% (95% CI: 9.0, 10.0) at the highest PM10 quintile. For patients with FEV1 < 2.0L, the mortality at the lowest PM10 quintile was 9.9% (95% CI: 8.8, 10.9) increasing to 14.2% (95% CI: 12.8, 15.6) at the highest quintile. Conclusion: Despite air quality improvement, there was a clear relationship between pollutant concentration and outcomes for respiratory emergency admissions; additionally, the underlying level of pulmonary function was predictive of in-hospital mortality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Toxics)
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Article
Household Air Pollution: Sources and Exposure Levels to Fine Particulate Matter in Nairobi Slums
Toxics 2016, 4(3), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics4030012 - 13 Jul 2016
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 3680
Abstract
With 2.8 billion biomass users globally, household air pollution remains a public health threat in many low- and middle-income countries. However, little evidence on pollution levels and health effects exists in low-income settings, especially slums. This study assesses the levels and sources of [...] Read more.
With 2.8 billion biomass users globally, household air pollution remains a public health threat in many low- and middle-income countries. However, little evidence on pollution levels and health effects exists in low-income settings, especially slums. This study assesses the levels and sources of household air pollution in the urban slums of Nairobi. This cross-sectional study was embedded in a prospective cohort of pregnant women living in two slum areas—Korogocho and Viwandani—in Nairobi. Data on fuel and stove types and ventilation use come from 1058 households, while air quality data based on the particulate matters (PM2.5) level were collected in a sub-sample of 72 households using the DustTrak™ II Model 8532 monitor. We measured PM2.5 levels mainly during daytime and using sources of indoor air pollutions. The majority of the households used kerosene (69.7%) as a cooking fuel. In households where air quality was monitored, the mean PM2.5 levels were high and varied widely, especially during the evenings (124.6 µg/m3 SD: 372.7 in Korogocho and 82.2 µg/m3 SD: 249.9 in Viwandani), and in households using charcoal (126.5 µg/m3 SD: 434.7 in Korogocho and 75.7 µg/m3 SD: 323.0 in Viwandani). Overall, the mean PM2.5 levels measured within homes at both sites (Korogocho = 108.9 µg/m3 SD: 371.2; Viwandani = 59.3 µg/m3 SD: 234.1) were high. Residents of the two slums are exposed to high levels of PM2.5 in their homes. We recommend interventions, especially those focusing on clean cookstoves and lighting fuels to mitigate indoor levels of fine particles. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Toxics)
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Article
UNMIX Methods Applied to Characterize Sources of Volatile Organic Compounds in Toronto, Ontario
Toxics 2016, 4(2), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics4020011 - 18 Jun 2016
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2717
Abstract
UNMIX, a sensor modeling routine from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), was used to model volatile organic compound (VOC) receptors in four urban sites in Toronto, Ontario. VOC ambient concentration data acquired in 2000–2009 for 175 VOC species in four air quality [...] Read more.
UNMIX, a sensor modeling routine from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), was used to model volatile organic compound (VOC) receptors in four urban sites in Toronto, Ontario. VOC ambient concentration data acquired in 2000–2009 for 175 VOC species in four air quality monitoring stations were analyzed. UNMIX, by performing multiple modeling attempts upon varying VOC menus—while rejecting the results that were not reliable—allowed for discriminating sources by their most consistent chemical characteristics. The method assessed occurrences of VOCs in sources typical of the urban environment (traffic, evaporative emissions of fuels, banks of fugitive inert gases), industrial point sources (plastic-, polymer-, and metalworking manufactures), and in secondary sources (releases from water, sediments, and contaminated urban soil). The remote sensing and robust modeling used here produces chemical profiles of putative VOC sources that, if combined with known environmental fates of VOCs, can be used to assign physical sources’ shares of VOCs emissions into the atmosphere. This in turn provides a means of assessing the impact of environmental policies on one hand, and industrial activities on the other hand, on VOC air pollution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Toxics)
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Communication
Current Status of Air Toxics Management and Its Strategies for Controlling Emissions in Taiwan
Toxics 2016, 4(2), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics4020008 - 12 Apr 2016
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2005
Abstract
Since the 1970s, hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), so-called air toxics, have been of great concern because they can cause serious human health effects and have adverse effects on the environment. More noticeably, some of them are known to be human carcinogens. The objective [...] Read more.
Since the 1970s, hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), so-called air toxics, have been of great concern because they can cause serious human health effects and have adverse effects on the environment. More noticeably, some of them are known to be human carcinogens. The objective of this paper is to investigate the regulatory systems and human health effects of air toxics which have been designated by the Taiwan government under the Air Pollution Control Act. These toxic air pollutants include acutely toxic gas (i.e., ammonia, chlorine, fluorides, hydrochloric acid, hydrogen cyanide, hydrogen sulfide, nitric acid, phosphoric acid and sulfuric acid), gas containing heavy metals, and carcinogenic chemicals (including formaldehyde, vinyl chloride, asbestos and matter containing asbestos, dioxins and furans, volatile organic compounds, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and polychlorinated biphenyls). In line with international concern about the carcinogenic risk and environmental persistence of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDDs/PCDFs) and heavy metals in recent years, the current status in monitoring and reducing the emissions of PCDDs/PCDFs from stationary sources was analyzed as a case study in the present study. Furthermore, the control strategies for reducing emissions of air toxics from stationary sources in Taiwan were also addressed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Toxics)
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