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Geochemical Journal
Geochemical Journal An open access journal for geochemistry
Published for geochemistry community from Geochemical Society of Japan.

Distribution and sources of particulate polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in air of Kamihaya, central Japan

Waqar Azeem Jadoon, Hiroaki Kondo, Hiroshi Sakugawa
Geochemical Journal, Vol. 49, No. 2, P. 207-217, 2015


This survey was conducted to analyze particle-associated atmospheric polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) at a rural site (Kamihaya) in Tanabe, Wakayama Prefecture, central Japan from 2012–2013. Analysis of particulate matter revealed that total PAHs ranged from 0.036 to 10.16 ng m−3 with an average concentration of 3.20 ng m−3. The highest PAHs concentration of 10.16 ng m−3 was observed on September 19, 2012. Significant seasonal variations in PAHs concentrations were observed at the site, with higher values during winter/spring and lower values during summer/autumn. Trajectory analyses suggest that PAHs produced domestically have a greater impact on Kamihaya than those transported from other countries. Molecular diagnostic ratios and principal component analysis showed that atmospheric PAHs primarily arose from industrial and traffic emissions, while wood combustion appeared to be a minor source. Overall, the results of this study suggest that atmospheric PAHs in Kamihaya present a potential threat to the underlying vegetation and may cause damage to plants if combined with other air pollutants.


polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, emission sources, factor analysis, power generation plant, vegetation

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