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Measurements of Ambient Air Fine and Coarse Particulate Matter in tenSouth-East Nigerian cities

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Industrial Chemistry, Ebonyi State University, P.M.B. 053 Abakaliki, NIGERIA
  • 2 Department of Chemistry, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture Umudike, P.M.B 7267, Umuahia, Abia State, NIGERIA

Res.J.chem.sci., Volume 5, Issue (1), Pages 71-77, January,18 (2015)

Abstract

This study monitored fine particulate matter (PM) load with aerodynamic diameter ten micrometer or less (PM10) and twoand half micrometer or less (PM2.5) in ten urban centres in South-Eastern Nigeria in the dry and wet seasons fromDecember, 2008 to September, 2009 using photometric laser-based particle counter instrument. The results showed that theseasonal mean varied in the range of 55.81±17.09 to 921.34±532.60 µg.m-3 for the PM10 in the dry season and 14.38±3.01 to266.06±129.79 µg.m-3 for the wet season. The seasonal mean of (PM2.5) ranged from 21.69±9.93 to 122.88±33.90 and3.31±2.36 to 11.44±4.57 µg.m-3 for the dry and wet seasons respectively. Comparatively, the cities’ PM10 load in the dryseason followed the order: Onitsha > Aba > Umuahia > Owerri > Enugu > Nsukka >Abakaliki > Afikpo > Orlu > Nnewi,while the order for dry season means of PM2.5 followed: Onitsha> Aba > Owerri > Umuahia > Abakaliki > Afikpo > Orlu >Enugu > Nsukka. The dry seasonal mean of PM10 and PM2.5 levels in all the cities exceeded the US annual National AmbientAir Quality Standard (NAAQS) of 50 µg.m-3 and 15 µg.m-3 respectively. The student t-test statistics revealed significantdifference between the dry and wet seasonal means of PM10 and PM2.5 (p<0.05) while correlation matrix showed that thePM10 and PM2.5 seasonal mean concentrations correlated positively (p<0.05). The study concluded that having 100% ofthese cities in the dry season for PM10 and PM2.5 and 60 % for PM10 in wet season exceeding the recommended annualguideline limit, portends public health risk particularly to people dwelling in the affected cities.

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