Gaseous elemental mercury emissions from informal E-Waste recycling facilities in Pakistan

Kazim, M. and Hussain Syed, J. and Binnur Kurt-Karakus, P. and Ozkaleli Akcetin, M. and Akram, S. and Birgul, A. and Kara, M. and Dumanoglu, Y. and Odabasi, M. and Saqib, Z. and Nasir, J. and Mahar, A. and Shah, T. and Gulzar Burq, M. and Jones, K.C. and Wania, F. (2023) Gaseous elemental mercury emissions from informal E-Waste recycling facilities in Pakistan. Waste Management, 170. pp. 261-269. ISSN 0956-053X

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Abstract

Detrimental effects of mercury (Hg) on ecosystems and human health have been well-documented. Whereas emissions of gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) from e-waste recycling have been reported in developed countries, much less is known about the situation in the Global South. Using a total of 132 passive air samplers, seasonally resolved concentrations of GEM in air were measured continuously at 32 informal e-waste recycling facilities and background location in Pakistan for a period of one year between September 2020 and December 2021. Annual average GEM concentrations at the studied locations ranged from 1.8 to 92 ng m −3. Among the studied cities, higher concentrations were measured in Karachi (mean ± s.d: 17 ± 22, range: 4.2–92 ng m −3), Lahore (16 ± 4.2, 8.2–22 ng m −3) and Peshawar (15 ± 17, 4.9–80 ng m −3), while lower levels were measured in Hyderabad (6.9 ± 6.2, 3.1–25 ng m −3), consistent with a higher rate of informal recycling activities in metropolitan areas. Seasonally, higher GEM levels occurred during autumn (15 ± 16: 3.3–92 ng m −3) and summer (13 ± 8.7: 1.8–80 ng m −3) than in winter (12 ± 8.4: 2.5–49 ng m −3) and spring (9.2 ± 7.3: 1.8–80 ng m −3), possibly reflecting enhanced volatilization at higher temperatures and/or varying magnitude of recycling operations in different seasons. Policies and strict regulations related to e-waste management should be developed and implemented urgently in the country.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Waste Management
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2300/2311
Subjects:
?? waste management and disposal ??
ID Code:
221349
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
14 Jun 2024 10:50
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
16 Jul 2024 00:17