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Characterisation and bioreactivity of ‘old’ and ‘new’ pollutant soots

Whittaker, A., Jones, Timothy Peter, Berube, Kelly Ann and Shao, L. 2002. Characterisation and bioreactivity of ‘old’ and ‘new’ pollutant soots. Presented at: 6th Annual UK Review Meeting on Outdoor and Indoor Air Pollution Research, MRC Institute for Environment and Health, University of Leicester, 15-16 April. Published in: Shuker, Linda and Forster, Pat eds.

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Soot from the combustion of coal dominated the airborne particulate pollution of the towns and cities of Britain prior to the 1960s. During the 1950s the most severe cases of pollution were reported in central London. Exceptionally low temperatures led to the meteorological phenomenon known as temperature inversion — a cold layer of air trapped by a warmer layer above. During such episodes the cold, stagnant layer trapped smoke from the city’s many chimneys, which, when combined with water drople ts, formed smogs. During the most severe episodes the mass of total suspended particulate (TSP) was estimated at between 2000 and 4000 μg/m3 (Ministry of Health, 1954); however, later theories suggested that these were underestimations and the actual values were probably in the region of 7000 μg/m3. These severe episodes led to the introduction of the clean air act in 1956 to control the burning of coal in UK cities, and the smogs were slowly eradicated. In Beijing 2000, domestic coal burning occurred on a large scale with coal stoves used for heating in 90% and cooking in 50% of households (Xu et al., 1994). Government legislation has come into effect prohibiting the domestic burning of coal, using instead natural gas. These two scenarios provide the opportunity to examine and compare two coal burning environments from different periods in time.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Lecture)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Earth and Environmental Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
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Last Modified: 06 May 2022 07:24

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