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A review on the direct effect of particulate atmospheric pollution on materials and its mitigation for sustainable cities and societies

Al-Thani, Hanadi, Koç, Muammer, Isaifan, Rima J.
Environmental science and pollution research international 2018 v.25 no.28 pp. 27839-27857
acid deposition, adverse effects, air, air pollution, biodiversity, cities, climate, climate change, deserts, fuels, human health, industry, literature, particulates, pollution control, quality of life, radiative forcing, social welfare, solar collectors, solar energy, stakeholders, sustainable technology, urban areas, vegetation
Particulate matter (PM) has gained significant attention due to the increasing concerns related to their effects on human health. Although several reviews have shed light on the effect of PM on human health, their critical adverse effect on material’s structure and sustainability was almost neglected. The current study is an attempt to fill this gap related to PM impact on structural materials under the overall consideration of sustainability. More specifically, this review highlights the existing knowledge by providing an overview on PM classification, composition, and sources in different locations around the world. Then, it focuses on PM soiling of surfaces such as solar panels due to an increasing need to mitigate the impact of soiling on reducing photovoltaic (PV) power output and financial competitiveness in dusty regions. This topic is of critical importance for sustainable deployment of solar energy in arid and desert areas around the world to help in reducing their impact on overall climate change and life quality. In addition, this review summarizes climate change phenomena driven by the increase of PM concentration in air such as radiative forcing and acid rain deposition due to their impact on human health, visibility and biodiversity. To this end, this work highlights the role of process management, choice of fuel, the implementation of clean technologies and urban vegetation as some possible sustainable mitigation policies to control PM pollution in cities and urban regions. This research is designed to conduct a comprehensive narrative literature review which targets broad spectrum of readers and new researchers in the field. Moreover, it provides a critical analysis highlighting the need to fill main research gaps in this domain. The findings of this review paper show that PM pollution imposes severe adverse impacts on materials, structures and climate which directly affect the sustainability of urban cities. The advantages of this review include the value of the extensive works that elaborate on the negative impacts of PM atmospheric pollution towards high level of public awareness, management flexibility, stakeholder’s involvements, and collaboration between academy, research, and industry to mitigate PM impact on materials and human welfare.