L. Sahakyan, N. Maghakyan, O. Belyaeva, G. Tepanosyan, M. Kafyan; Arab J Geosci, 2016, pp. 9:142; DOI: 10.1007/s12517-015-2159-y
Cities damaged by devastating earthquakes are exposed to dust pollution during a long-term period of reconstruction and liquidation of calamity-caused consequences. For the first time after a catastrophic earthquake of December 1988, a complex research of atmospheric dust was initiated for city of Gyumri. The research goal was revealing peculiarities of spatial distribution of dust and associated heavy metals and assessing health risk to local population. Measurements of dust content in near-surface atmospheric air and dust load levels were done on 25–31 August 2013. Dust content was assessed with application of a portable aspirator АВА-1-120-02А. A dust load level assessment was done using tree leaves as the best natural dust filters. A negative correlation was established between dust load and dust content which is seen in spatial distribution of dust load levels and dust contents. The following six out of seven studied heavy metals were detected in dust: Pb, Zn, Cu, Cr, Ni, and Mo, except Cd. Mean concentrations of all the detected metals exceeded geochemical background by 1.1–5.0 times. The level of summary pollution of dust was low on the entire area of the city; priority pollutants were Cr and Zn. A summary load of heavy metals varied widely. The highest values were detected along major motorways. The maximal share in the summary load of heavy metals belonged to Zn and Pb. Medium and high levels of carcinogenic risk were established only for Cr and Ni, respectively.
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