Human health risk assessment of arsenic in a region influenced by a large coal-fired power plant

Abstract

Previous studies in the largest coal mining region of Brazil showed the strong influence of the coal-fired power plant in spatial distribution of As, especially in prevailing wind direction. However, it was not evaluated the risk of As on the local population. Thus, this study aims to assess the human health risk of As in a region under influence of atmospheric deposition of As from the coal-fired power plant. The human health risk assessment model was based on established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA). It estimate the average daily dose (ADD), non-carcinogenic (HQ) and carcinogenic risk by in oral, dermal and inhalation exposure routes, as well as, the contribution of each via to ADD, HQ and carcinogenic risk to soil and air. Separately, both air and soil exposure pathways show HQ and HI below the risk threshold (< 1). However, when considerate the sum of both exposure pathways in the worst scenario of As contamination in air (maximum concentrations) there are a carcinogenic risk in the most of evaluated areas, including in a control area. The maximum values of As in PM10 contribute to health risk by air inhalation pathway (1.45 µg/m3). Inhalation pathway presents the major contribution to ADDair and ADDtotal. However, oral and dermal routes were more important to ADDsoil. The study reveals that there is a carcinogenic risk for exposure to As at a distance of almost 10 km from the coal-fired power plant.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1

Availability of data and materials

The datasets used and/or analyzed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.

References

  1. Ahern M, Mullett M, MacKay K, Hamilton C (2011) Residence in coal-mining areas and low-birth-weight outcomes. Matern Child Health J 15:974–979. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10995-009-0555-1

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Alves RIS, Sampaio CF, Nadal M, Schuhmacher M, Domingo JL, Segura-Muñoz SI (2014) Metal concentrations in surface water and sediments from Pardo River, Brazil: human health risks. Environ Res 133:149–155. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2014.05.012

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Beesley L, Inneh OS, Norton GJ, Moreno-jimenez E, Pardo T, Clemente R, Dawson JJC (2014) Assessing the in fl uence of compost and biochar amendments on the mobility and toxicity of metals and arsenic in a naturally contaminated mine soil. Environ Pollut 186:195–202. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2013.11.026

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Bigliardi AP, Fernandes CLF, Pinto EA, dos Santos M, Garcia EM, Baisch PRM, Soares MCF, Muccillo-Baisch AL, da Silva Júnior FMR (2020) Blood markers among residents from a coal mining area. Environ Sci Pollut Res 28:1409–1416. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-10400-3

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Bolan N, Kunhikrishnan A, Thangarajan R, Kumpiene J, Park J, Makino T, Beth M, Scheckel K (2014) Remediation of heavy metal(loid)s contaminated soils—to mobilize or to immobilize? J Hazard Mater 266:141–166. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2013.12.018

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Bradham KD, Diamond GL, Burgess M, Juhasz A, Klotzbach M, Maddaloni M, Nelson C, Scheckel K, Serda SM, Stifelman M, Thomas DJ, Bradham KD, Diamond GL, Burgess M, Juhasz A, Julie M, Maddaloni M, Nelson C, Scheckel K, Serda SM, Stifelman M (2018) In vivo and in vitro methods for evaluating soil arsenic bioavailability: relevant to human health risk assessment. J Toxicol Environ Health Part B 21:83–114. https://doi.org/10.1080/10937404.2018.1440902

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Casey JA, Karasek D, Ogburn EL, Goin DE, Dang K, Braveman PA, Morello-Frosch R (2018) Retirements of coal and oil power plants in California: association with reduced preterm birth among populations nearby. Am J Epidemiol 187:1586–1594. https://doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwy110

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Chen Y, Shah N, Huggins FE, Huffman GP, Linak WP, Miller CA (2004) Investigation of primary fine particulate matter from coal combustion by computer-controlled scanning electron microscopy. Fuel Process Technol 85:743–761. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fuproc.2003.11.017

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  9. CONAMA (2009) Resolução CONAMA n.420. Cons. Nac. do Meio Ambient.

  10. Da Silva ALO, Barrocas PRG, do C. Jacob S, Moreira JC (2005) Dietary intake and health effects of selected toxic elements. Toxic Met Plants 17:79–93

    Google Scholar 

  11. Da Silva Júnior FMR, Martins Baisch PR, Vargas VMF, Muccillo-Baisch AL (2010) Genetic damage caused by coal and its derivatives. In: Coal extraction, pp 29–48

  12. da Silva Júnior FMR (2017) “De olho no que pisa”: os perigos da contaminação do solo. Rev Pan-Amazônica Saúde 8(4):19–21

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. da Silva Júnior FMR, Tavella RA, Fernandes CLF, Soares MCF, de Almeida KA, Garcia EM, da Silva Pinto EA, Baisch ALM (2018) Genotoxicity in Brazilian coal miners and its associated factors. Hum Exp Toxicol 37:891–900. https://doi.org/10.1177/0960327117745692

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  14. da Silva Júnior FMR, Ramires PF, dos Santos M, Seus ER, Soares MCF, Muccillo-Baisch AL, Mirlean N, Baisch PRM (2019) Distribution of potentially harmful elements in soils around a large coal-fired power plant. Environ Geochem Health 41:2131–2143. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10653-019-00267-w

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  15. De Souza MR, Da Silva FR, Souza De, Telles C, Niekraszewicz L, Dias JF, Premoli S, Correa DS, de Soares M, C., Marroni, N.P., Morgam-martins, M.I., Da Silva, J., (2015) Evaluation of the genotoxic potential of soil contaminated with mineral coal tailings on snail Helix aspersa. Chemosphere 139:512–517. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2015.07.071

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  16. de Souza-Neto HF, da Silveira-Pereira WV, Dias YN, de Souza ES, Teixeira RA, de Lima MW, Ramos SJ, do Amarante CB, Fernandes AR (2020) Environmental and human health risks of arsenic in gold mining areas in the eastern Amazon. Environ Pollut 265:114969. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2020.114969

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  17. dos Santos M, Flores Soares MC, Martins Baisch PR, Muccillo Baisch AL, Da Silva Júnior FMR (2018) Biomonitoring of trace elements in urine samples of children from a coal-mining region. Chemosphere 197:622–626. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2018.01.082

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Dos Santos M, Da Silva Junior FMR, Vicente-Zurdo D, Baisch P, Ro M, Muccillo-baisch AL, Madrid Y (2019a) Selenium and mercury concentration in drinking water and food samples from a coal mining area in Brazil. Environ Sci Pollut Res 26(15):15510–15517

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  19. Elétrica Agência Nacional de Energia (2008) No Atlas de Energia Elétrica no 2015, Brasil

  20. Fairweather-tait SJ, Bao Y, Broadley MR, Collings R, Ford D, Hesketh JE, Hurst R (2011) Selenium in human health and disease. Antiodidants Redox Signal 14:1337–1383

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  21. Galán E, Romero-baena AJ, Aparicio P, González I (2019) A methodological approach for the evaluation of soil pollution by potentially toxic trace elements. J Geochem Explor 203:96–107. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gexplo.2019.04.005

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Keegan TJ, Farago ME, Thornton I, Hong B, Colvile RN, Pesch B, Jakubis P, Nieuwenhuijsen MJ (2006) Dispersion of As and selected heavy metals around a coal-burning power station in central Slovakia. Sci Total Environ 358:61–71. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2005.03.020

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Khalid S, Shahid M, Niazi NK, Murtaza B, Bibi I, Dumat C, Khalid S, Shahid M, Niazi NK, Murtaza B, Bibi I (2016) A comparison of technologies for remediation of heavy metal contaminated soils. J Geochem Explor 182:247–268. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gexplo.2016.11.021

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Lamm SH, Li J, Robbins SA, Dissen E, Chen R, Feinleib M (2015) Are residents of mountain-top mining counties more likely to have infants with birth defects? The west virginia experience. Birth Defects Res Part A Clin Mol Teratol 103:76–84. https://doi.org/10.1002/bdra.23322

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  25. Landrigan PJ, Fuller R, Acosta NJR, Adeyi O, Arnold R, Basu NN, Baldé AB, Bertollini R, Fuster V, Greenstone M, Haines A, Hanrahan D, Hunter D, Khare M, Krupnick A, Lanphear B, Lohani B, Martin K, Mathiasen KV, Mcteer MA, Murray CJL, Ndahimananjara JD, Perera F, Potočnik J, Preker AS, Ramesh J, Rockström J, Salinas C, Samson LD, Sandilya K, Sly PD, Smith KR, Steiner A (2018) The Lancet Commission on pollution and health. Lancet Comm 391:461–512. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(17)32345-0

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. Liao Y, Wang J, Wu J, Driskell L, Wang W, Zhang T, Xue G, Zheng X (2010) Spatial analysis of neural tube defects in a rural coal mining area. Int J Environ Health Res 20:439–450. https://doi.org/10.1080/09603123.2010.491854

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. Mao X, Hu X, Wang Y, Xia W, Zhao S, Wan Y (2020) Temporal trend of arsenic in outdoor air PM 2. 5 in Wuhan, China, in 2015–2017 and the personal inhalation of PM-bound arsenic: implications for human exposure. Environ Sci Pollut Res 27:21654–21665

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  28. Menezes APS, Da Silva J, Fisher C, Silva FR, Reyes JM, Picada JN, Ferraz AG, Correa DS, Premoli SM, Dias JF, Souza CTD, Ferraz ADBF (2016) Chemical and toxicological effects of medicinal Baccharis trimera extract from coal burning area. Chemosphere 146:396–404. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2015.12.028

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  29. Migliavacca D, Teixeira EC, Pires M, Fachel J (2004) Study of chemical elements in atmospheric precipitation in South Brazil. Atmos Environ 38:1641–1656. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.atmosenv.2003.11.040

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  30. Munawer ME (2017) Human health and environmental impacts of coal combustion and post-combustion wastes. J Sustain Min 17(2):87–96. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsm.2017.12.007

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. Ng JC, Ciminelli V, Gasparon M, Caldeira C (2019) Health risk apportionment of arsenic from multiple exposure pathways in Paracatu, a gold mining town in Brazil. Sci Total Environ 673:36–43. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.04.048

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  32. Peplow D (1999) Environmental impacts of mining in eastern Washington.

  33. Pinto EADS, Garcia EM, De Almeida KA, Fernandes CFL, Tavella RA, Soares MCF, Baisch PRM, Muccillo-Baisch AL, da Silva Júnior FMR (2017) Genotoxicity in adult residents in mineral coal region—a cross-sectional study. Environ Sci Pollut Res 24:16806–16814. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-017-9312-y

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  34. Rodriguez-Proteau R, Grant RL (2006) Toxicity evaluation and human health risk assessment of surface and ground water contaminated by recycled hazardous waste materials. Handb Environ Chem 2:133–189. https://doi.org/10.1007/b11434

    Article  Google Scholar 

  35. Ruhl L, Vengosh A, Dwyer GS, Hsu-kim HD, A., Bergin, M., Kravchenko, J., (2009) Survey of the potential environmental and health impacts in the immediate aftermath of the coal ash spill in Kingston, Tennessee. Environ Sci Technol 43:6326–6333

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  36. Saha N, Rahman MS, Ahmed MB, Zhou JL, Ngo HH, Guo W (2017) Industrial metal pollution in water and probabilistic assessment of human health risk. J Environ Manag 185:70–78. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2016.10.023

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  37. Santos M, Penteado JO, Cristina M, Soares F, Muccillo-baisch AL (2019b) Association between DNA damage, dietary patterns, nutritional status, and non-communicable diseases in coal miners. Environ Sci Pollut Res 26(15):15600–15607

    Article  Google Scholar 

  38. Silva Júnior FMR, Honscha LC, Brum RL, Ramires PF, Tavella RA, Fernandes CLF, Penteado JO, Bonifácio AS, Volcão LM, Santos M, Coronas MV (2020) Air quality in cities of the extreme south of Brazil. Ecotoxicol Environ Contam 15:61–67. https://doi.org/10.5132/eec.2020.01.08

    Article  Google Scholar 

  39. Stafilov T, Šajn R, Ahmeti L (2019) Environmental Engineering Geochemical characteristics of soil of the city of Skopje, Republic of Macedonia. J Environ Sci Health Part A. https://doi.org/10.1080/10934529.2019.1620042

    Article  Google Scholar 

  40. Trasande L, Liu Y (2011) Reducing the staggering costs of environmental disease in children, estimated at $76.6 billion in 2008. Health Aff 30:863–870. https://doi.org/10.1377/hlthaff.2010.1239

    Article  Google Scholar 

  41. USEPA (1989) Risk Assessment Guidance for Superfund (RAGS): part A. United States Environ. Prot. Agency, Washington

    Google Scholar 

  42. USEPA (2001) Drinking water standards and health advisories. United States Environ. Prot. Agency, Washington

    Google Scholar 

  43. USEPA (2004) Risk Assessment Guidance for Superfund: volume I human health evaluation manual (Part E, Supplemental Guidance for Dermal Risk Assessment)

  44. USEPA (2009) Risk Assessment Guidance for Superfund: volume I human health evaluation manual (Part F, Supplemental Guidance for Inhalation Risk Assessment)

  45. Wei B, Yang L (2010) Review article A review of heavy metal contaminations in urban soils, urban road dusts and agricultural soils from China. Microchem J 94:99–107. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.microc.2009.09.014

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  46. WHO (2012) Exposure to arsenic : a major public health concern, pp 3–8

  47. Zenelia R, Dacib N, Paçarizi H, Daci-Ajvazi M (2011) Impact of environmental pollution on human health of the population which lives nearby Kosovo thermopower plants. Indoor Built Environ 20:479–482. https://doi.org/10.1177/1420326X11409471

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  48. Zhang K, Li H, Cao Z, Shi Z, Liu J (2019) Human health risk assessment and risk source analysis of arsenic in soil from a coal chemical plant in Northwest China. J Soils Sediments 19:2785–2794. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11368-018-02233-y

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgements

The authors thank the CAPES for providing doctoral scholarships (LM, MS and PFR) and express their gratitude to the subjects who provided critical information for this study.

Funding

This study was financed in part by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior - Brasil (CAPES) - Finance Code 001.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Contributions

LM, PFR and MS were responsible for data analysis and writing the manuscript. MVC, JVL and DD were co-responsible for the design of the experimental design and choice of the analyzed variables. PRMB and ALMB were responsible for the quantification of arsenic in soil and atmospheric particulate material. FMRSJ supervised the study. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to F. M. R. da Silva Júnior.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Consent for publication

Not applicable.

Additional information

Editorial responsibility: Shahid Hussain.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Müller, L., Ramires, P.F., dos Santos, M. et al. Human health risk assessment of arsenic in a region influenced by a large coal-fired power plant. Int. J. Environ. Sci. Technol. (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13762-021-03167-8

Download citation

Keywords

  • Air
  • Candiota
  • Coal
  • Environmental pollutant
  • Exposure
  • Soil