World Congress on Risk 2015
19-23 July, 2015, Singapore

Online Program

Session Schedule & Abstracts

* Disclaimer: All presentations represent the views of the authors, and not the organizations that support their research. Please apply the standard disclaimer that any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations in abstracts, posters, and presentations at the meeting are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of any other organization or agency. Meeting attendees and authors should be aware that this disclaimer is intended to apply to all abstracts contained in this document. Authors who wish to emphasize this disclaimer should do so in their presentation or poster. In an effort to make the abstracts as concise as possible and easy for meeting participants to read, the abstracts have been formatted such that they exclude references to papers, affiliations, and/or funding sources. Authors who wish to provide attendees with this information should do so in their presentation or poster.

Common abbreviations

Tuesday 21-07-2015

Interdisciplinary and International Perspectives of Fine Particulate Matter Air Pollution

Room: Discovery   11:30–12:30

Chair(s): Chris Frey

1    Overview of PM2.5: From Source to Outcome. Frey H.C.    (4)

Abstract: Fine particles less than 2.5 microns in aerodynamic diameter (PM2.5) are emitted directly by combustion sources such as diesel engines and open burning and are formed in the atmosphere as a result of chemical and physical transformations of a wide variety of precursors, such as organic gases and vapors and oxides of nitrogen and sulfur. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has identified human exposure to PM2.5 as causally linked to a variety of adverse health effects, including short-term cardiovascular effects, short-term mortality, long-term cardiovascular effects, and long-term mortality. PM2.5 can also lead to substantial reduction in visibility, and long-term transport and deposition of PM2.5 on surface ice in polar regions is implicated as a factor in climate change. This presentation will provide an overview of the “source-to-outcome” continuum for PM2.5 including emission sources, air quality, exposure, and effects processes, and will describe the key features of regulatory instruments used in the U.S. to reduce emissions of directly-emitted PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursors and to manage PM2.5 air quality. Lessons learned from these experiences will be discussed with respect to institutional, technological, and policy needs for development, implementation, and monitoring of effective management strategies, and their implications for Asia and other rapidly developing regions.

2    Options for Managing PM2.5 Emissions. Balasubramanian B.    (6)

Abstract: Atmospheric fine particles (PM2.5) are derived from multiple emission sources, including combustion of fossil fuels for power generation, transportation and industrial processes, biomass burning, and influenced by the formation of new particles through photochemical pathways involving precursor gases. Among these sources, airborne particulate matter (PM) originating from both mobile and stationary combustion sources has received considerable attention as it contributes to a significant proportion of PM2.5 in urban areas. In addition, combustion-derived PM consists of a high number of nanoparticles and ultrafine particles with their aerodynamic diameter ≤50 nm and 100 nm, respectively. To meet stringent regulatory standards set for PM2.5, several practical strategies and innovative technological solutions are being developed and implemented in both developed and developing countries. An emerging need is to seek combustion emissions controls with an emphasis on “co-control” across pollutants emitted by the source. This option involving a multi-pollutant approach is getting a high priority as it attempts to address concerns over air quality improvement, climate change mitigation and improved energy security in tandem under the framework of sustainable development. This presentation will provide an overview of various options available for managing PM2.5 emissions as well as their effectiveness in solving more than one environmental problem simultaneously.

3    Air Quality and Climate Effects of PM2.5. Fatima Andrade M.    (7)

Abstract: Most of the available information regarding fine particle concentrations and emissions inventories is for the Northern Hemisphere, especially the USA and Europe. It is important to have an accurate estimate of the emission and concentrations of fine particles in Latin America, mainly in its urban agglomerations. In South America, more than 70% of the population lives in urban areas, some of which have already been classified as megacities. This population is exposed to high concentrations of particles emitted mainly by the transport sector, biomass burning and industrial processes. Although there are few data regarding the mass, composition and impact of such particles, some relevant studies are being conducted in order to analyze the impact of public policies for transportation, the health effects of air pollutants and the impact of black carbon on the Andes cryosphere. This presentation will address the South American contribution to PM2.5 emissions and the emissions from the megacities of Brazil in particular. Studies evaluating the source contributions in these cities, as well as the health effects, will be discussed. Local and regional transport of pollutants will be addressed in relation to the current spatial and temporal knowledge of the emissions inventory.

4    Insights to Support Policy Options. Salvo A.E.    (5)

Abstract: Heavy-duty vehicles burning diesel are a major contributor to fine and ultrafine particles in urban air. It is not uncommon, particularly in developing-country megacities, to observe large trucks circulating in the inner city that are simply seeking to connect from one intercity highway to another, but are forced onto the city’s congested roads due to the absence of a “ring road” or “beltway” around the megacity. Yet public investments in megacity beltways have been criticized in that they tend not to relieve traffic congestion in the long run, a phenomenon known as the “fundamental law of road congestion,” whereby users select into available road space. This talk will argue that a megacity beltway’s key benefit is to shift the composition, rather than level, of traffic, removing heavy vehicles from residential areas – areas of high human exposure – thus leading to improved public health outcomes. We provide evidence from the recent expansion of the metropolis of São Paulo’s beltway. While effects on traffic congestion in the affected residential areas were indeed short lived, we observe a persistent reduction in ambient NOx concentrations, consistent with the hypothesis that light vehicles substituted for intercity trucks as the latter shifted to the beltway. In addition to road traffic and ambient air impacts, we examine the effect of the beltway on hospital admissions, comparing outcomes over time (i.e., before versus after the beltway expansion), across neighborhoods (closer versus further from truck routes), and between disease classifications (e.g., cardiovascular and respiratory disease versus disease not thought to be caused by air pollution). More generally, the presentation illustrates the policy relevance of research that brings together different disciplines in the social, environmental and medical sciences.

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