Main content area

Residue concentrations and profiles of PCDD/Fs in ash samples from multiple thermal industrial processes in Vietnam: Formation, emission levels, and risk assessment

Pham, Mai Thi Ngoc, Hoang, Anh Quoc, Nghiem, Xuan Truong, Tu, Binh Minh, Dao, Thi Nhung, Vu, Duc Nam
Environmental science and pollution research international 2019 v.26 no.17 pp. 17719-17730
United Nations Environment Programme, acceptable risk, aluminum, boilers, bottom ash, bricks, coal, emissions factor, fly ash, polychlorinated dibenzodioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans, power plants, recycling, risk assessment, steel, tin, toxicity, Vietnam
The residue concentrations and congener profiles of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/furans (PCDD/Fs) were examined in fly ash and bottom ash released from different thermal industrial processes in Vietnam. PCDD/F concentrations and toxic equivalents (TEQs) in the ash samples varied greatly and decreased in the following order: steel making > aluminum recycling > medical waste incinerator > boilers > municipal waste incinerator > tin production > brick production > coal-fired power plant. Both the precursor and de novo synthesis were estimated as possible formation mechanisms of dioxins in the ash, but the latter pathway was more prevalent. The highest emission factors were estimated for the ash released from some steel-making plants, aluminum-recycling facilities, and a medical waste incinerator. The emission factors of PCDD/Fs in ash released from some steel plants of this study were two to six times higher than the UNEP Toolkit default value. The annual emission amount of ash-bound dioxins produced by 15 facilities in our study was estimated to be 26.2 to 28.4 g TEQ year⁻¹, which mainly contributed by 3 steel plants. Health risk related to the dioxin-containing ash was evaluated for workers at the studied facilities, indicating acceptable risk levels for almost all individuals. More comprehensive studies on the occurrence and impacts of dioxins in waste streams from incineration and industrial processes and receiving environments should be conducted, in order to promote effective waste management and health protection scheme for dioxins and related compounds in this rapidly industrializing country.