Background: Cement plants generate particulate matter (PM) across processes from raw material preparation to packaging. The presence of total suspended particulates (TSP) coming out of the stack causes a high accumulation of dust in residential areas. Human exposure to TSP could affect human health and wellbeing.
Objectives: The present study aims to evaluate concentrations of TSP and to estimate the health risks of TSP exposure through the inhalation pathway in communities surrounding a private cement industry in Maros regency, Indonesia.
Methods: Total suspended particulates were collected using a high-volume air sampler (HVAS) at five locations. Samples were taken by grab sampling for 24 hours. The SCREEN3 program was used to view the maximum range and distribution of pollutants based on the geographical, stack profiles and meteorological factors in the study area. Hazard quotient (HQ) was used to estimate non-carcinogenic risks of TSP in surrounding communities.
Results: Total suspended particulate concentrations were measured with a maximum value of 133.24 μg/m3 and a minimum value of 18.48 μg/m3. This maximum value exceeds the minimum acceptable level from Canadian National Ambient Air Quality Objectives (C-NAAQOs). The non-carcinogenic risks from the inhalation pathway were low except for location 3 (HQ>1) across all locations.
Conclusions: The cement plant may significantly contribute to total TSP concentrations in air and may potentially have adverse effects on human health. Communities near the cement plant are vulnerable to TSP exposure and measures are needed to reduce TSP in Maros regency, Indonesia.
Participant Consent: Obtained.
Ethics Approval: This study was approved by the Health Research Ethics Committee of Hasanuddin University with protocol number 28920093022.
Competing Interests: The authors declare no competing financial interests.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.