Atmospheric concentration, source identification, and health risk assessment of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in two countries: Peru and Turkey

Sari M. F. , Cordova Del Aguila D. A. , Taşdemir Y. , Esen F.

ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT, vol.192, 2020 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 192
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10661-020-08604-8


It is known that some persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are used worldwide, and these pollutants are dangerous for human health. However, there are still countries where measurements of these pollutants have not been adequately measured. Although many studies have been published for determining the concentrations of POPs in Turkey, there are limited studies in Latin American countries like Peru. For this reason, it is essential both to conduct a study in Peru and to compare the study with another country. This study is aimed at determining the atmospheric POPs such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH), organochlorine pesticide (OCP), and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) concentrations using passive air samplers in Yurimaguas (Peru) and Bursa (Turkey). Molecular diagnosis ratios and ring distribution methods were used to determine the sources of PAHs. According to these methods, coal and biomass combustions were among the primary sources of PAHs in Peru, while petrogenic and petroleum were the primary sources of PAHs in Turkey. Then, alpha-HCH/gamma-HCH and beta-/(alpha+gamma)-HCH ratios were used to determine the sources of OCPs. According to the alpha-HCH/gamma-HCH ratios, the primary sources of OCPs in both countries were lindane. Similarly, according to beta-/(alpha+gamma)-HCH ratios, the HCHs have been historically used in Peru while they were recently utilized in Turkey. Finally, homologous group distributions were used to determine the sources of PCBs. Similar distributions of homologous groups were observed in the sampling sites in both countries. Also, the homologous group distributions obtained have been determined that industrial activities could be effective in the sampling areas in both countries. When the cancer risks that could occur via inhalation were evaluated, no significant cancer risk has been determined in both countries.