Main content area

Assessment of the health risks and odor concentration of volatile compounds from a municipal solid waste landfill in China

Wu, Chuandong, Liu, Jiemin, Liu, Shihua, Li, Wenhui, Yan, Luchun, Shu, Mushui, Zhao, Peng, Zhou, Peng, Cao, Wenbin
Chemosphere 2018 v.202 pp. 1-8
air, correlation, environmental quality, human health, hydrogen sulfide, landfills, leachates, municipal solid waste, naphthalene, odors, risk, sulfur, temperature, toxic substances, volatile compounds, China
Municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills are a source of odorous and toxic compounds. In this work, we present an integrated assessment of the odor concentration and human health risks of volatile compounds to evaluate the environmental quality at a MSW landfill. Air samples were collected seasonally from six areas of the landfill with different functions. The total concentrations of the compounds ranged from 204.0 to 7426.7 μg m−3, and the concentrations in temporarily and permanently capped areas were 50.3 and 83.4% lower than those in the tipping area, respectively. The odor concentration was greatest at the leachate collection tank (1732–6254 ouE m−3) and tipping area (1573–4113 ouE m−3) and was mainly caused by hydrogen sulfide (57.9 and 49.1%, respectively). Moreover, the odor concentration was positively correlated with the temperature (r = 0.500, p < 0.05, n = 24). Although the non-carcinogenic (HI) and carcinogenic (R) risks of most compounds were largely below the acceptable levels (HI = 1, R = 1.0E-6), HI values of hydrogen sulfide (2.3), trichloropropane (2.0), and naphthalene (1.2) as well as R values of naphthalene (1.3E-4) and trimethylbenzene (1.2E-4) in the waste areas exceeded acceptable levels. Moreover, the cumulative HI (2.5–5.7) and R (1.0E-04 to 3.4E-04) in the waste areas should receive special attention since they were above acceptable levels during all of the seasons. Aromatic and halogenated compounds dominated the cumulative R, accounting for 79 and 21% of the total, on average, while for the cumulative HI, sulfur compounds contributed the most (67%).