Urban road dust contains anthropogenic components at toxic concentrations which can be hazardous to human health. A total of 36 road dust samples from five different urban areas, a commercial (CM), a high traffic (HT), a park (GR), a rail station (LRT), and a residential area (RD), were collected in Kuala Lumpur City followed by investigation into compositions, sources, and human health risks. The concentrations of trace metals in road dust and the bioaccessible fraction were determined using inductively couple plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) while ion concentrations were determined using ion chromatography (IC). The trace metal concentrations were dominated by Fe and Al with contributions of 53% and 21% to the total trace metal and ion concentrations in road dust. Another dominant metal was Zn while the dominant ion was Ca2+ with average concentrations of 314 ± 190 μg g-1 and 3470 ± 1693 μg g-1, respectively. The most bioaccessible fraction was Zn followed by the sequence Sr > Cd > Cr > Cu > Ni > Co > Mn > As > V > Pb > Fe > Al > U. The results revealed that the highest trace metal and ion concentrations in road dust and in the bioaccessible fraction were found at the LRT area. Based on the source apportionment analysis, the major source of road dust was vehicle emissions/traffic activity (47%), and for the bioaccessible fraction, the major source was soil dust (50%). For the health risk assessments, hazard quotient (HQ) and cancer risk (CR) values for each element were
Mitigation measures and control strategies relating to novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have been widely applied in many countries in order to reduce the transmission of this pandemic disease. A Movement Control Order (MCO) was implemented in Malaysia starting from the March 18, 2020 as a pandemic control strategy which restricted all movement and daily outdoor activities. To investigate the impact of MCO, air pollutants: particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter less than 10 μm (PM10), particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter less than 2.5 μm (PM2.5), sulphur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), ozone (O3) and carbon monoxide (CO) in nine major cities in Malaysia were measured before and during the implementation of the MCO. The non-carcinogenic health risk assessments of the air pollutants are also determined using the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Health Risk Assessment method. Overall, NO2 recorded an average percentage reduction of 40% with the highest reduction observed at Kota Kinabalu (62%). The largest reductions of PM10, PM2.5, SO2, O3 and CO were recorded at Kota Kinabalu (17%), Kuantan (9.5%), Alor Star (38%), Kota Bharu (15%), and Ipoh (27%) respectively. All cities had hazard quotient (HQ) values of <1 suggesting no non-carcinogenic health effects. The highest HQ was observed for PM2.5 during the MCO period (4.53E-02) in Kuala Lumpur. An average hazard index (HI) value of 1.44E-01 (before the MCO) and 1.40E-01 (during the MCO) showed higher human health risks before the MCO than during the MCO. This study gives confidence to regulatory bodies that the reduction of human activities significantly reduces air pollution and increases human health and so good air pollution control strategies can provide crucial impacts, especially in reducing air pollution and improving human health.
This study aimed to investigate the chemical composition and potential sources of PM10 as well as assess the potential health hazards it posed to school children. PM10 samples were taken from classrooms at a school in Kuala Lumpur's city centre (S1) and one in the suburban city of Putrajaya (S2) over a period of eight hours using a low volume sampler (LVS). The composition of the major ions and trace metals in PM10 were then analysed using ion chromatography (IC) and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), respectively. The results showed that the average PM10 concentration inside the classroom at the city centre school (82µg/m(3)) was higher than that from the suburban school (77µg/m(3)). Principal component analysis-absolute principal component scores (PCA-APCS) revealed that road dust was the major source of indoor PM10 at both school in the city centre (36%) and the suburban location (55%). The total hazard quotient (HQ) calculated, based on the formula suggested by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), was found to be slightly higher than the acceptable level of 1, indicating that inhalation exposure to particle-bound non-carcinogenic metals of PM10, particularly Cr exposure by children and adults occupying the school environment, was far from negligible.
The distribution of total petrogenic hydrocarbon was investigated in the subsurface water of Setiu Wetland from July to October 2008. The concentration was quantified by UV-fluorescence spectroscopy and ranged from 4 to 121 μg/L (mean 60 ± 41 μg/L). Higher total petrogenic hydrocarbon concentrations were found in area with high boating activities suggesting that the contribution is likely related to fossil fuel combustion. The present study also revealed that the total petrogenic hydrocarbon values are still lower that those reported in Malaysian coastal waters.
This study was conducted to determine the composition and source apportionment of surfactant in atmospheric aerosols around urban and semi-urban areas in Malaysia based on ionic compositions. Colorimetric analysis was undertaken to determine the concentrations of anionic surfactants as Methylene Blue Active Substances (MBAS) and cationic surfactants as Disulphine Blue Active Substances (DBAS) using a UV spectrophotometer. Ionic compositions were determined using ion chromatography for cations (Na(+), NH4(+), K(+), Mg(2+), Ca(2+)) and anions (F(-), Cl(-), NO3(-), SO4(2-)). Principle component analysis (PCA) combined with multiple linear regression (MLR) were used to identify the source apportionment of MBAS and DBAS. Results indicated that the concentrations of surfactants at both sampling sites were dominated by MBAS rather than DBAS especially in fine mode aerosols during the southwest monsoon. Three main sources of surfactants were identified from PCA-MLR analysis for MBAS in fine mode samples particularly in Kuala Lumpur, dominated by motor vehicles, followed by soil/road dust and sea spray. Besides, for MBAS in coarse mode, biomass burning/sea spray were the dominant source followed by motor vehicles/road dust and building material.
It is important to assess indoor air quality in school classrooms where the air quality may significantly influence school children's health and performance. This study aims to determine the concentrations of PM2.5 and dust chemical compositions in indoor and outdoor school classroom located in Kuala Lumpur City Centre. The PM2.5 concentration was measured from 19th September 2017-16th February 2018 using an optical PM2.5 sensor. Indoor and outdoor dust was also collected from the school classrooms and ion and trace metal concentrations were analysed using ion chromatography (IC) and inductively couple plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) respectively. This study showed that the average indoor and outdoor 24 h PM2.5 was 11.2 ± 0.45 µg m-3 and 11.4 ± 0.44 µg m-3 respectively. The 8 h PM2.5 concentration ranged between 3.2 and 28 µg m-3 for indoor and 3.2 and 19 µg m-3 for outdoor classrooms. The highest ion concentration in indoor dust was Ca2+ with an average concentration of 38.5 ± 35.0 µg g-1 while for outdoor dust SO42- recorded the highest ion concentration with an average concentration of 30.6 ± 9.37 µg g-1. Dominant trace metals in both indoor and outdoor dust were Al, Fe and Zn. Principle component analysis-multiple linear regression (PCA-MLR) demonstrated that the major source of indoor dust was road dust (69%), while soil dominated the outdoor dust (74%). Health risk assessment showed that the hazard quotient (HQ) value for non-carcinogenic trace metals was
Climate change has been predicted to influence the marine phytoplankton community and its carbon acquisition strategy. Extracellular carbonic anhydrase (eCA) is a zinc metalloenzyme that catalyses the relatively slow interconversion between HCO3- and CO2. Early results indicated that sub-nanomolar levels of eCA at the sea surface were sufficient to enhance the oceanic uptake rate of CO2 on a global scale by 15%, an addition of 0.37 Pg C year-1. Despite its central role in the marine carbon cycle, only in recent years have new analytical techniques allowed the first quantifications of eCA and its activity in the oceans. This opens up new research areas in the field of marine biogeochemistry and climate change. Light and suitable pH conditions, as well as growth stage, are crucial factors in eCA expression. Previous studies showed that phytoplankton eCA activity and concentrations are affected by environmental stressors such as ocean acidification and UV radiation as well as changing light conditions. For this reason, eCA is suggested as a biochemical indicator in biomonitoring programmes and could be used for future response prediction studies in changing oceans. This review aims to identify the current knowledge and gaps where new research efforts should be focused to better determine the potential feedback of phytoplankton via eCA in the marine carbon cycle in changing oceans.
This study intends to determine the health impacts from two office life cycles (St.1 and St.2) using life cycle assessment (LCA) and health risk assessment of indoor metals in coarse particulates (particulate matter with diameters of less than 10µm). The first building (St.1) is located in the city centre and the second building (St.2) is located within a new development 7km away from the city centre. All life cycle stages are considered and was analysed using SimaPro software. The trace metal concentrations were determined by inductively couple plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Particle deposition in the human lung was estimated using the multiple-path particle dosimetry model (MPPD). The results showed that the total human health impact for St.1 (0.027 DALY m-2) was higher than St.2 (0.005 DALY m-2) for a 50-year lifespan, with the highest contribution from the operational phase. The potential health risk to indoor workers was quantified as a hazard quotient (HQ) for non-carcinogenic elements, where the total values for ingestion contact were 4.38E-08 (St.1) and 2.59E-08 (St.2) while for dermal contact the values were 5.12E-09 (St.1) and 2.58E-09 (St.2). For the carcinogenic risk, the values for dermal and ingestion routes for both St.1 and St.2 were lower than the acceptable limit which indicated no carcinogenic risk. Particle deposition for coarse particles in indoor workers was concentrated in the head, followed by the pulmonary region and tracheobronchial tract deposition. The results from this study showed that human health can be significantly affected by all the processes in office building life cycle, thus the minimisation of energy consumption and pollutant exposures are crucially required.
The air pollution index (API) is an important figure used for measuring the quality of air in the environment. The API is determined based on the highest average value of individual indices for all the variables which include sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), carbon monoxide (CO), ozone (O3), and suspended particulate matter (PM10) at a particular hour. API values that exceed the limit of 100 units indicate an unhealthy status for the exposed environment. This study investigates the risk of occurrences of API values greater than 100 units for eight urban areas in Peninsular Malaysia for the period of January 2004 to December 2014. An extreme value model, known as the generalized Pareto distribution (GPD), has been fitted to the API values found. Based on the fitted model, return period for describing the occurrences of API exceeding 100 in the different cities has been computed as the indicator of risk. The results obtained indicated that most of the urban areas considered have a very small risk of occurrence of the unhealthy events, except for Kuala Lumpur, Malacca, and Klang. However, among these three cities, it is found that Klang has the highest risk. Based on all the results obtained, the air quality standard in urban areas of Peninsular Malaysia falls within healthy limits to human beings.
Samples of sea-surface microlayer (SML) and sub-surface water (SSW) were collected from two areas-Kaohsiung City (Taiwan) and the southwest coast of Peninsular Malaysia to study the influence of SML on enrichment and distribution and to compare SML with the SSW. Anionic surfactants (MBAS) predominated in this study and were significantly higher in Kaohsiung than in Malaysia. Industrial areas in Kaohsiung were enriched with high loads of anthropogenic sources, accounted for higher surfactant amounts, and pose higher environmental disadvantages than in Malaysia, where pollutants were associated with agricultural activities. The dissolved organic carbon (DOC), MBAS, and cationic surfactant (DBAS) concentrations in the SML correlated to the SSW, reflecting exchanges between the SML and SSW in Kaohsiung. The relationships between surfactants and the physiochemical parameters indicated that DOC and saltwater dilution might affect the distributions of MBAS and DBAS in Kaohsiung. In Malaysia, DOC might be the important factor controlling DBAS.
This study determines the levels of surfactants at 12 stations located in the Melaka River Estuary. This river estuary is located within a tourism area of Melaka Historical City. The concentrations of anionic and cationic surfactants in the sea surface microlayer (SML) and sub-surface water (SSW) were determined by using two colorimetric methods, methylene blue active substances (MBASs) and disulphine blue active substances (DBASs), respectively. The results showed that cationic surfactants as DBAS (ranging between 0.19 and 0.25 μmol L-1) dominated the concentrations of surfactants in SML. The enrichment factor (Ef) between MBAS and DBAS in the SML and SSW ranged between 1.0 and 2.0, and 1.0 to 1.4, respectively. There was no significant correlation (p > 0.05) between MBAS and DBAS for both SML and SSW. Nevertheless, there were strong correlations (p
Anionic surfactants are one of the pollutants derived from particulate matter (PM) and adversely affect the health of living organisms. In this study, the compositions of surfactants extracted from PM and vehicle soot collected in an urban area were investigated. A high-volume air sampler was used to collect PM sample at urban area based on coarse (> 1.5 µm) and fine (
This study determines the bulk surface water (BSW) dissolved inorganic nutrients of nitrogen (DINi) and phosphate (DIP) during the upwelling season off the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia, South China Sea. BSW samples were analysed for DINi and DIP by using a standard automated colorimetric method. BSW DINi and DIP concentrations varied between 0.11 and 2.55 μM (mean 1.12 ± 0.63 μM), and below detection limit, and 0.29 μM (mean 0.11 ± 0.08 μM), respectively. The spatial distribution of higher concentrations between DINi and DIP was distinct. However, the highest concentrations of DINi and DIP were mostly recorded in the month of peak upwelling (July and August), where colder BSW temperatures were also encountered during field sampling. This study provides new evidence on the presence of BSW nutrients of DINi and DIP during upwelling season peak in July and August before their decline in September.
This study aims to determine the source apportionment of surfactants in marine aerosols at two selected stations along the Malacca Straits. The aerosol samples were collected using a high volume sampler equipped with an impactor to separate coarse- and fine-mode aerosols. The concentrations of surfactants, as methylene blue active substance and disulphine blue active substance, were analysed using colorimetric method. Ion chromatography was employed to determine the ionic compositions. Principal component analysis combined with multiple linear regression was used to identify and quantify the sources of atmospheric surfactants. The results showed that the surfactants in tropical coastal environments are actively generated from natural and anthropogenic origins. Sea spray (generated from sea-surface microlayers) was found to be a major contributor to surfactants in both aerosol sizes. Meanwhile, the anthropogenic sources (motor vehicles/biomass burning) were predominant contributors to atmospheric surfactants in fine-mode aerosols.
Terrestrial anionic surfactants (AS) enter the marine environment through coastal region. Despite that, in general limited knowledge is available on the coastal AS transfer pathway. This paper aims to assess the distributions and exchange of AS in the Peninsular Malaysia coastal environments, adjacent to the southern waters of South China Sea and Strait of Malacca. An assessment case study was conducted by a review on the available data from the workgroup that span between the year 2008 and 2019. The findings showed that AS dominated in the sea surface microlayer (SML, 57%) compared to subsurface water (SSW, 43 %). AS were also found to have dominated in fine mode (FM, 71 %) compared to coarse mode (CM, 29 %) atmospheric aerosols. SML AS correspond to the SSW AS (p < 0.01); however, highest enrichment factor (EF) of the SML AS was not consistent with highest SSW AS. Direct AS exchange between SML and FM and CM was not observed. Furthermore, the paper concludes AS mainly located in the SML and FM and could potentially be the main transfer pathway in the coastal environment.
This comprehensive paper conducts an in-depth review of personal exposure and air pollutant levels within the microenvironments of Asian city transportation. Our methodology involved a systematic analysis of an extensive body of literature from diverse sources, encompassing a substantial quantity of studies conducted across multiple Asian cities. The investigation scrutinizes exposure to various pollutants, including particulate matters (PM10, PM2.5, and PM1), carbon dioxide (CO2), formaldehyde (CH2O), and total volatile organic compounds (TVOC), during transportation modes such as car travel, bus commuting, walking, and train rides. Notably, our review reveals a predominant focus on PM2.5, followed by PM10, PM1, CO2, and TVOC, with limited attention given to CH2O exposure. Across the spectrum of Asian cities and transportation modes, exposure concentrations exhibited considerable variability, a phenomenon attributed to a multitude of factors. Primary sources of exposure encompass motor vehicle emissions, traffic dynamics, road dust, and open bus doors. Furthermore, our findings illuminate the influence of external environments, particularly in proximity to train stations, on pollutant levels inside trains. Crucial factors affecting exposure encompass ventilation conditions, travel-specific variables, seat locations, vehicle types, and meteorological influences. The culmination of this rigorous review underscores the need for standardized measurements, enhanced ventilation systems, air filtration mechanisms, the adoption of clean energy sources, and comprehensive public education initiatives aimed at reducing pollutant exposure within city transportation microenvironments. Importantly, our study contributes to the growing body of knowledge surrounding this subject, offering valuable insights for policymakers and researchers dedicated to advancing air quality standards and safeguarding public health.
This study determined the source contribution of PM2.5 (particulate matter <2.5 μm) in air at three locations on the Malaysian Peninsula. PM2.5 samples were collected using a high volume sampler equipped with quartz filters. Ion chromatography was used to determine the ionic composition of the samples and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry was used to determine the concentrations of heavy metals. Principal component analysis with multilinear regressions were used to identify the possible sources of PM2.5. The range of PM2.5 was between 10 ± 3 and 30 ± 7 µg m(-3). Sulfate (SO4 (2-)) was the major ionic compound detected and zinc was found to dominate the heavy metals. Source apportionment analysis revealed that motor vehicle and soil dust dominated the composition of PM2.5 in the urban area. Domestic waste combustion dominated in the suburban area, while biomass burning dominated in the rural area.
Rural background stations provide insight into seasonal variations in pollutant concentrations and allow for comparisons to be made with stations closer to anthropogenic emissions. In Malaysia, the designated background station is located in Jerantut, Pahang. A fifteen-year data set focusing on ten major air pollutants and four meteorological variables from this station were analysed. Diurnal, monthly and yearly pollutant concentrations were derived from hourly continuous monitoring data. Statistical methods employed included principal component regression (PCR) and sensitivity analysis. Although only one of the yearly concentrations of the pollutants studied exceeded national and World Health Organisation (WHO) guideline standards, namely PM10, seven of the pollutants (NO, NO2, NOx, O3, PM10, THC and CH4) showed a positive upward trend over the 15-year period. High concentrations of PM10 were recorded during severe haze episodes in this region. Whilst, monthly concentrations of most air pollutants, such as: PM10, O3, NOx, NO2, CO and NmHC were recorded at higher concentrations between June and September, during the southwest monsoon. Such results correspond with the mid-range transport of pollutants from more urbanised and industrial areas. Diurnal patterns, rationed between major air pollutants and sensitivity analysis, indicate the influence of local traffic emissions on air quality at the Jerantut background station. Although the pollutant concentrations have not shown a rapid increase, an alternative background station will need to be assigned within the next decade if development projects in the surrounding area are not halted.
A study has been conducted to determine the composition of surfactants in runoff water in the semi-urban area of Bandar Baru Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia. Runoff samples were collected from five different locations with contrasting functional activities and the colorimetric method was used to analyze the concentrations of surfactants as methylene blue active substances (MBAS) for anionic surfactants and as disulphine blue active substances (DBAS) for cationic surfactants. The results showed that the highest surfactant concentrations of MBAS and DBAS in runoff water were recorded in the samples collected at the residential area, with the concentrations of 3.192 ± 0.727 and 0.170 ± 0.028 μmol/L, respectively. Anionic surfactants as MBAS were found to dominate the concentration of surfactants in both runoff and rainwater. The concentrations of both anionic and cationic surfactants in runoff water were recorded as being higher than in rainwater.