Monitoring of Ultrafine Particles in the Surrounding Urban Area of In-Land Passenger Ferries

Lopes M., Russo A., Ferreira F., Gouveia C.
Journal of Environmental Protection, 10, 838-860.

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Maritime transportation, widely used both in international transport of goods and touristic purposes, has been identified as a significant source of ultrafine particles (UFP). In-land passenger ferry is a source of UFP far less addressed; however, in locations with relatively high frequency of this transportation mode, it is expected that they contribute to an increase of their concentration. Moreover, the negative effects of UFP on human health and environment are known and therefore, monitoring UFP produced by ferries is vital to assess the degree of exposure of who work or live close to ferries’ terminals or downwind to their cruising path. This work aims to study the influence of in-land ferries activities on UFP in the urban/suburban areas near ferries’ terminals and downwind across the cruising path. The UFP monitoring campaign was carried out from September to December 2018 for 19 non-consecutive periods. The sampling sites were chosen in order to maximize measurements under downwind conditions and allow the association between ferry operation and UFP concentration response. Based on data collected, correlation analysis was performed between ferry’s traffic and particle number counting (PNC) of UFP, and also with meteorological variables. Results show an increase in PNC ranging from 25 to 197% during the third minute around a ferry movement and are moderate to positive significant correlations between PNC values and the number of ferry operations (r = 0.79 to r = 0.94), showing that UFP emitted by in-land ferries contributes to PNC increase. Moreover, negative correlations (r = -0.85 to r = -0.93) between PNC and wind intensity were also found.