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Impacts of desert dust outbreaks on air quality in urban areas
Title: Impacts of desert dust outbreaks on air quality in urban areas
Authors: Milford, Celia RESEARCHERID Cuevas Agulló, Emilio ORCID RESEARCHERID SCOPUSID Autor AEMETMarrero, CarlosAutor AEMETBustos Seguela, Juan José deAutor AEMETGallo, VíctorRodríguez González, Sergio ORCID RESEARCHERID Autor AEMETRomero Campos, Pedro Miguel ORCID RESEARCHERID Autor AEMETTorres, Carlos ORCID RESEARCHERID Autor AEMET
Keywords: Desert dust; Air quality; Particulate matter; Anthropogenic pollution
Issue Date: 2020
Publisher: MDPI
Citation: Atmosphere. 2020, 11(1), 23
Publisher version:
Abstract: Air pollution has many adverse effects on health and is associated with an increased risk of mortality. Desert dust outbreaks contribute directly to air pollution by increasing particulate matter concentrations. We investigated the influence of desert dust outbreaks on air quality in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, a city located in the dust export pathway off the west coast of North Africa, using air-quality observations from a six-year period (2012–2017). During winter intense dust outbreaks PM10 mean (24-h) concentrations increased from 14 µg m−3 to 98 µg m−3 , on average, and PM2.5 mean (24-h) concentrations increased from 6 µg m−3 to 32 µg m−3 . Increases were less during summer outbreaks, with a tripling of PM10 and PM2.5 daily mean concentrations. We found that desert dust outbreaks reduced the height of the marine boundary layer in our study area by >45%, on average, in summer and by ∼25%, on average, in winter. This thinning of the marine boundary layer was associated with an increase of local anthropogenic pollution during dust outbreaks. NO2 and NO mean concentrations more than doubled and even larger relative increases in black carbon were observed during the more intense summer dust outbreaks; increases also occurred during the winter outbreaks but were less than in summer. This has public health implications; local anthropogenic emissions need to be reduced even further in areas that are impacted by desert dust outbreaks to reduce adverse health effects.
Sponsorship : This activity has been undertaken in the framework of the World Meteorological Organisation Global Atmosphere Watch Urban Research Meteorology and Environment (GURME) project.
ISSN: 2073-4433
Appears in Collections:Artículos científicos 2019-2022

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