Journal of Environment and Safety
Online ISSN : 2186-3725
Print ISSN : 1884-4375
ISSN-L : 1884-4375
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Special Issue Proceedings
Proceedings of ACSEL2018, The 5th Asian Conference on Safety and Education in Laboratory November 21-22, 2018
  • Sheela Reuben, Cheh Peng Lim, Saravanan Gunaratnam
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 9-12
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Field activities undertaken by National University of Singapore (NUS) staff and students include sample and data collection for research. The University also employs experiential field-based teaching methodologies for students. The diversity of field activities coupled with differences in environment where these activities are conducted exposes the staff and students to various hazards. This paper will provide an overview of the NUS Field Research Safety Programme, which is based on Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle of management. The objective of the NUS field research programme is to ensure that risks present during field activities and experiments are effectively managed through a process of risk assessment and implementation of risk controls such as training, communication,supervision and emergency response plans. The risk controls are reviewed by the institutional safety committee before the commencement of the activity. This approach has been effective in preventing accident and incidents in the field and ensuring compliance to applicable regulations. After the team returns from fieldwork, review of the activities are conducted and best practices are shared with other field researchers. This programme is administered by the Office of Safety, Health and Environment (OSHE).

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  • Kenji Iino, Toshio Mogi, Hiromi Takiguchi, Masayuki Nakao
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 13-16
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) Office of the School of Engineering at the University of Tokyo has been developing an on-line system for administration of people and equipment (Environmental Health and Safety Administration System (EHSAS)). The system records and manages machine facilities, safety courses, in addition to the base information of personnel, organizations, and locations. The system registers their relations among the information like machine ownership and location, people’s affiliation, and real time on-campus information of where people are. This paper reports about the whereabouts information tool that is critical in case of an accident that requires personnel evacuation. At times of such evacuations, managers need to find whereabouts of all members and the central safety office, if buildings have been thoroughly evacuated. Our new development added a function for lab managers to take roll calls in case of evacuations, and for the Disaster Prevention Center, an overall view function for displaying who is where on the entire campus. Individual users can edit their whereabouts history and make some statistical evaluations.

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  • Hinako Kawamitsu, Sakura Aragaki, Naruse Shingaki, Yoshiteru Iinuma, Y ...
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 17-20
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The purpose of this study was to devise a method for recycling soy pulp from Okinawan tofu industrial waste and to contribute to the extension of healthy life expectancy in Japan. This study focused on the amino acid-producing ability of lactic acid bacteria. Lactic acid bacteria were isolated from Okinawan tofu soy pulp and were screened for useful strains that indicated amino acid production capacity.

    We succeeded in isolating a Lactococcus lactis strain that produces isoleucine abundantly as an essential amino acid from soy pulp. In the future, soy pulp should be commercially produced using the strain identified in the present study to enhance the strength of the elderly.

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  • Yuta Ando, Roger C. Baars, Misuzu Asari
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 21-25
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), consisting of 17 goals and 169 targets regarding the economic, social and environmental objectives to achieve global sustainable development by 2030, have received considerable attention not only in politics but also in business and research. Although many stakeholders have recently tried to integrate the concept of SDGs into their activities, most of Japanese people do not know SDGs according to a previous survey. SDGs can comprehensively explain current problems and challenges from a more holistic perspective, therefore SDGs can be a powerful tool to discuss the sustainability at universities. However, fundamentally,the level of sustainability awareness among Kyoto university students is still unclear. Here we conducted a questionnaire survey targeting Kyoto University students to investigate their knowledge and awareness of SDGs and to reveal how Kyoto University students aware the sustainability. This survey (n = 144) showed that 106 respondents (73.7%) know SDGs and the most common source of information from which they first became aware is “class”. We demonstrated that their personal understanding and importance is different regarding the 17 goals and find a gap between students’ impression about how well Japan has been achieved and the reality. Importantly, many Kyoto University students know SDGs but most of them do not fully understand all the 17 goals and their current implementation, even though they think that the goals are important for their daily lives. Thus, it is necessary to connect SDGs with our daily interests, such as food,health, safety, etc., in order to improve approaches to inform university students about the concept of SDGs. These results offer an important insight into SDG knowledge and awareness at Kyoto University and help to accelerate education for sustainable development.

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  • Akiko Kashiwagi, Masato Yoshida, Yasuaki Hirooka
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 27-30
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Long-term bulk storage of unnecessary chemical substances increases the work needed to manage these substances in the universities.

    There is an increased exposure risk for staff and students to harmful gases and potential delays in dealing with emergencies such as fires.

    Moreover, the damage to work environments and other problems in terms of safety and hygiene management is also feared. To solve these problems, Faculty of Medicine and the university hospital in Tottori University sponsored a program for the collection of the chemical substances stored in laboratories on campus and the reuse of them. The project succeeded in making reuse of about 7% of the surplus chemical substances at our university. There have been several previous reports on the disposal and reuse of leftover reagents at universities. However, this is the first report investigating the attributes of the chemical substances used in the biomedical field laboratories specifically. It is useful as basic data on chemical substances management in this field.

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  • Ai Shuhara, Yoshito Oshima
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 31-35
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The increasing number of international students and researchers in Japanese universities has led to an urgent need for the development of suitable educational materials on environment and safety. However, very few studies have reported on the actual situation of international students and researchers, and necessary discussions about the contents of such educational materials have not yet been held.

    We investigated and clarified the educational situation and problems of international students and researchers. The results of the investigation revealed that there are diverse cultural differences within the university. Japanese common sense is not necessarily understood by international students and researchers, and hence, when deciding the contents, we must carefully consider the differences between Japanese and foreign cultures. Everyone must sufficiently learn the necessary safety education contents according to one’s research activity; however, lacking in the unwritten common sense possibly becomes a barrier to learning. Therefore, as an introduction to safety education, incorporating and explaining the key features of “safety in Japan” would seem to promote the learning of essential contents and enhance the understanding of safety issues. We proposed introductory contents that would facilitate the understanding of how to safely and properly conduct research activities in Japan. The contents included Japanese-specific nature, culture, rules, and customs,which are very basic matters known as Japanese common sense. The developed contents were also organized into units, with one topic per unit. This feature enables the international students and researchers to focus on relevant units according to their own needs. This concept of developing educational materials, i.e., introductory contents to aid the learning of required contents, can be extended and applied in other disciplines to develop basic and advanced educational materials for the international students and researchers.

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  • Nirodha Ranasinghe, Uththara Perera, Prasad Mahakumara, Nirasha Rathna ...
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 37-40
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Nuclear and radiation technology plays a vital role in socio-economic development of a country. Sri Lanka as a nation with emerging application of radiation and nuclear technology in the fields of medicine, industry, agriculture, security, and research has a national requirement of enhancing the radiation literacy among the students who will be leading the probable future endeavors. With assistance from international counterparts such as the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the University of Tokyo, Japan Sri Lanka has initiated a comprehensive, long-term project to achieve this objective. While maintaining a close relationship with the general public,catering the radiation safety and security requirements of the country, Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board (SLAEB) has deployed a human resource development plan for the secondary school students. This program was assisted by the Ministry of Education, Japan and IAEA.

    The objectives of the program are to improve radiation literacy among students with demonstration assisted activities. The demonstrations are expected to introduce the “WOW Factor” to learning. Overcoming the deficiency of trained human resources for this long-term venture, a training program has been conducted for secondary school physics teachers of the country. The participants’ feedback can be considered as the prime measurement of this program and generally identifies the capacity, improvement and possible success of the overall event. The paper presents the procedure of execution of the program and feedback received from teachers regarding the expected outcome. This can be considered as a pilot study to evaluate the success of the program.

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  • Rina Yamaguchi, Yukiko Nezu, Atsushi Nishida, Hitoshi Yamamoto, Yoshit ...
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 41-44
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    In university chemical laboratories, many types of chemicals are used for various purposes. Laboratories are workplaces in which complex airflows are formed because many experimenters work simultaneously and arbitrarily and the laboratory layout also frequently varies, according to their own experimental purposes and plans, and such complex airflows can inadvertently cause experimenters to become exposed to chemicals in laboratories. To prevent experimenters from being exposed to hazardous chemicals, the dynamics of the airflow in the laboratory need to be precisely analyzed.

    In this study, we elucidated how experimenter actions impact airflow using 1/10-scale mockup laboratory by Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) analysis, a method for directly observing of airflow. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulation showed overall similar airflow profiles to the PIV analysis, but it failed to reproduce the location, number, and size of airflow vortices. We also conducted an experimental analysis for identifying the influence of walking on airflow by PIV and discovered that the turbulence by walking influences the airflow particularly in the vicinity of walking locus. These results suggest that the direct observation by PIV analysis is an effective method for the thorough discussion of the complex and unsteady airflow in the laboratory.

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  • Yukiko Nezu, Rumiko Hayashi, Hitoshi Yamamoto, Yoshito Oshima
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 45-47
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The fact that the frequency of laboratory accident remains stable year after year suggests that the current concept of accident prevention based on retrospectively investigating the causes of accidents at their sources has certain limitations. In response to this situation, we have proposed a new concept for accident prevention systems using a non-empirical approach, such that laboratory users can promptly be informed when any deviation from the laboratory usual state is detected. In this system, all data concerning the state of the laboratory needs to be collected by real-time monitoring, and the usual state or “non-usual state” of the laboratory is defined by integrating various laboratory activity data. Thus, consolidating all relevant data to be monitored and establishing a method for collecting each data is important. In addition, collecting real-time data for laboratory’s individual details on human elements, non-human elements, and environments can also contribute to grasping the current situation and improving problems in the laboratory. In this paper, we report our recent results examining the tracking of reagent bottles using a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) system as an example of the realtime monitoring. A case study in a real chemical laboratory confirmed that an RFID system can collect data for tracing object movements,however, the study also revealed we need to further develop our data-collection method in order to construct a non-empirical accident prevention system.

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  • Yasuro Fuse, Takashi Nagaya, Ichiro Aizawa
    Type: Proceedings
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 49-52
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The mean concentration of 1,4-dioxane in the atmosphere is 0.029 µg/m3. This value is higher than those of water and food. At the industrial waste incineration facility targeted in this study, 1,4-dioxane was generated when the exhaust gas was passed through a dry process neutralizing apparatus with a lime coated bag filter. It is conjectured that the 1,4-dioxane is generated from the lime on the bag filter. Thus, the 1,4-dioxane generation mechanism was investigated via a simulation experiment where the dry process neutralizing apparatus was replicated.

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General Issue
Commentaries(invited)
  • Yoshiko Tsuji, Shogo Ehata, Marcos Esteban Aguilar, Francis Zheng, Gis ...
    Type: Commentaries
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 53-57
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Universities are tasked with increasing environmental safety in parallel with facilitating research activities. The research field at universities has characteristics of a high level of expertise, originality, multiplicity, and interdisciplinary. The diversity of the research site is not limited to the internationalization / gender of the members, the differences in the cultural background of members, the complexity and sophistication of the research, and the interdisciplinarity of the research field, but also includes the types of equipment and chemicals used in the experiment. Though these issues likely depend on individual circumstances, they are still common issues in every country, and it is expected that the safety education methods that are effective at each site will also have high commonality. It is important to work for each country on the harmonization for sharing and cooperating on an innovative way of safety management and education methods.

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Research Papers
  • Shizuaki Murata, Kengo Tomita, Taiji Mishina, Rumiko Hayashi, Tadashi ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 59-65
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Approximately 400 reports describing fires and/or explosions on academic campuses were identified in the data (> 8,000 in 2016) available from the Accident Reports Sharing System of the Seven National Universities of Japan. This system was used to collect accident reports from seven major national Japanese universities for the last seven years, using keywords related to fire (fire, burning, explosion,burst, spurt, and so on). Half of these reports of fires were classified as chemical fires caused by laboratory chemicals, solvents, or chemical wastes. Approximately 3/4 of these reports of chemical fires involved 15 chemical substances, each of which could be classified into one of four cases (> 1% of the total number of fires). The dangerous characteristics of these 15 chemicals were deemed to be high flammability, pyrophoricity and/or incompatibility with water (in that an extremely exothermic and/or highly flammable gas would be generated upon contact with water or moisture), as well as being strong oxidizers.

    It was found that 52% of the fires were caused by six organic solvents that are commonly used in laboratories (acetone, diethyl ether,ethanol, hexane, methanol, and i-propyl alcohol) and pyrophoric materials (e.g., lithium, sodium, potassium, and their hydride or organic derivatives), which were responsible for starting 35% of these fires. This was revealed by a data comparison made by Nagoya University regarding the magnitude of the fire risk associated with these chemicals, depending not only on their dangerous natures (chemical reactivity and physicochemical properties), but also their distribution throughout the campus. In addition, characteristic combinations of combustible materials with an ignition source or improper handling have led to multiple similar fires at various universities. Several points essential to campus safety education or training and the prevention of fire-related accidents caused by the use of dangerous chemicals and improper handling are discussed.

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  • Boon Ching Khoo, Ferdaus Haneem Tahar, Boon Yu Wee, James Heng Chiak S ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 67-70
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: May 30, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Our clinical laboratory implemented toolbox meeting in 2017 to prevent recurrence of laboratory exposures to high risk microorganisms such as Brucella sp. and Neisseria meningitidis. This study evaluates the effectiveness of daily toolbox meetings by using objective and subjective methods, namely incident frequency rate and perception survey respectively. Responses collected from the survey were analysed using McNemar’s Test. Results showed a drop in exposure frequency since the adoption of toolbox meeting. Similarly, perception survey among laboratory technologists showed favourable improvements in various aspects, including communication, competency and consultation, some of which were statistically significant.

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  • Nguyen Thanh Dien, Yasuhiro Hirai, Yoshiji Honda, Junya Yano, Shin-ich ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 71-83
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    To ensure the quality control of discharge water, we monitored the concentrations of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) weekly in wastewater discharged from buildings related to laboratories at six sub-campuses within the Kyoto University-Yoshida campus from December 2016 to December 2018. In general, the VOC levels in the wastewater were much lower than the VOC discharge standards of the city of Kyoto. Among the total of 1,817 measured samples, 12 samples exceeded the effluent standard of dichloromethane (DCM),accounting for 0.66%, and 1 sample exceeded the effluent standard of 1,4-dioxane, accounting for 0.06%. The highly accurate quantification with a low detection limit provided by the Environment Preservation Research Center of Kyoto University revealed a decreasing trend of DCM contamination from 2017 (0.0118 mg/L) to 2018 (0.0005 mg/L). The concentration of DCM in wastewater frequently exceeded the effluent standard in 2017 (11 samples), whereas only 1 sample exceeded it in 2018. The frequent violation in 2017 reflected the high demand of DCM in research activities and inappropriate handling of DCM liquid waste. Several investigations of the cause and alerts for prevention of recurrence had been conducted at the sites where the violations were detected. The integrated drainage management methods (IDMMs) at Kyoto University involve weekly monitoring of wastewater quality, providing information about wastewater analysis results, conducting investigations into violations and giving instructions to prevent recurrence, developing posters about the handling of organochlorine solvents, conducting surveys on the awareness of experimental wastewater management, and promoting training courses/workshops. The IDMMs and inspections of the facilities related to laboratory sinks and draft chambers,conducted by Kyoto University and the city of Kyoto in accordance with Revision of Water Pollution Prevention Law, are some of the key factors influencing the decrease in cases of violations and concentrations of DCM from 2017 to 2018.

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Short Communications
  • Thorsten Meßinger, Jürgen Steck
    Type: Short Communications
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 85-87
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: July 15, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    This presentation gives an overview of our flexible hazardous waste disposal system with high level in occupational health and safety technical standards based on advanced waste processing procedures. While the amount of disposal increased by 25% in the last 25 years,costs were lowered by 80 %. A wide spectrum of compounds is able to be mixed by a specific separation of eight different waste categories and disposed in large bundles. The disposal system is simple; it avoids accidents and combines ecological and economic advantages.

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  • Raghavan Sampathraju, Mahamad Asif Mansuri
    Type: Short Communications
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 89-93
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: August 25, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The composition and nature of pollutants emitted from biomedical waste incinerators depends on waste being burnt, efficiency of waste incinerators and pollution control measures in place. The effects among workers include ischemic heart disease, excess hyperlipidemia, increased small airway obstruction and chloracne. Plasma pyrolysis is an environment friendly technology that convert organic waste into CO, H2 and hydrocarbons etc. The studies on air pollutants in the occupational environment of biomedical waste disposal systems are very scarce, especially in developing countries. Hence, a study was conducted to evaluate air pollutants PM10, CO, SO2, NO2,H2S, Cl2 and total VOCs at plasma pyrolysis system located in Ahmedabad city of India in the year 2011. The concentration of particulate matter (SPM and RPM or PM10), CO, SO2, H2S, NO2, Cl2 and total VOCs were well within national ambient air quality standards (CPCB, 2009) and within permissible exposure limit (PEL) of Indian Factories Act, 1948. The management was suggested to follow CPCB Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 201816), CPCB Amendment Rules9) and best practices for incineration suggested by WHO21). Further studies targeting exposure assessment of heavy metals and other organic pollutants (PCBs, dioxins and furans) are needed.

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Feature articles on mercury research
Commentaries(invited)
  • Mick Saito
    Type: Commentaries
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 95-97
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Minamata Convention on Mercury entered into force in 2017 and a global and comprehensive mercury management has begun. The toxicity of mercury has been known since ancient times and Global Mercury Assessment published by UNEP in 2002 highlighted mercury released from various sources seriously affecting humans and wildlife. .

    Because of its unique characteristics, mercury has supported people’s life for various purposes for long time. ASGM is the largest mercury-using sector globally which is widely practiced in developing countries. Mercury is released naturally from volcanic activities,etc. but anthropogenic activities are much bigger contributors to the global mercury emissions.

    The Minamata Convention aims to protect the human health and the environment from anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds. The Convention calls for a comprehensive control of mercury for its entire lifecycle in cooperation with developed and developing countries.

    While most of the heavy metals cause local pollutions with the 'traditional' pattern (use-emission-exposure-health impact), mercury circulates globally via atmosphere and oceans. The global environmental issues have very complicated nature, thus, they must employ scientific research and comprehensive planning. Mercury exists widely on the Earth and significant time gap exists between measures taken and the results achieved. For maintaining environment as a global commons, cooperation of all countries and stakeholders are extremely important.

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Reviews
  • Hiroaki Tsutsumi, Wachirah Jaingam, Teerapong Duangdee, Koji Arizono
    Type: Reviews
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 99-108
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: August 05, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The authors review the previous studies on the bioaccumulation process of mercury in the marine ecosystem, focusing on the benthic one in enclosed coastal seas. According to the conventional ideas, the mercury content of animals tends to increase discontinuously as the elevation of the trophic level in the biological community. This typical pattern of the bioaccumulation of mercury has been described in the pelagic ecosystem. The mercury contaminated in the water is absorbed by the phytoplankton, and is further biologically magnified in the aquatic animals located at higher trophic levels such as planktivorous fish, piscivorous fish, and sea birds and marine mammals. In the benthic ecosystem in enclosed coastal seas, the mercury transference pathway tends to be more complex due to a variety of diets available for the benthic invertebrates, and the presence of a kind of bioconcentration process of mercury into the sediment. A large amount of organic particles, which are referred to as POM such as dead bodies of phytoplankton and zooplankton and feces excreted from the zooplankton, are always settling on the sea floor as detritus before they have been degraded fully by microorganisms in the water, due to shallow water. The detritus tend to be degraded by microorganisms, but its non-degradable parts, including mercury contaminants, tend to accumulate in the sediment. Some benthic invertebrates burrow into the sediment, and take in the mercury condensed in the sediment through their deposit-feeding activities or suspension-feeding activities to the re-suspended sediment just above the sea floor. The mercury accumulated in the benthic invertebrates is apt to be transferred to benthic and benthopelagic fishes that feed on the infaunal benthic invertebrates preferentially. Here, an accelerated bioaccumulation pathway of mercury exists in the benthic ecosystem, and brings further biologically magnified mercury to the pelagic ecosystem in the enclosed coastal seas.

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Research Papers
  • Kuang-Wei Huang, Koji Arizono, Yuka Yakushiji, Jun Kobayashi, Yasuhiro ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 109-117
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: August 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Substance flow analysis of mercury (Hg), Hg mass distribution and amount of Hg emissions were estimated at a 90 t/h small-scale industrial coal-fired boiler at the pulp factory in Guangdong province, China. Feed coal, bottom ash, electrostatic precipitator (ESP) ash,fabric filter (FF) ash, and limestone were sampled. The results showed that approximately 99% of Hg in the feed coal turned into gaseous Hg after the combustion process. More than 90% of the Hg was enriched in fly ash removal by ESP and FF, which is higher than corresponding values previously reported for other coal-fired power plants. The Hg input and Hg output as per the substance flow analysis in this study were found to be 12.12 kg (coal), 1.80 kg (limestone), 0.16 kg (bottom ash), 12.93 kg (fly ash), and 0.83 kg (stack). This result can be attributed to equipping the circulating fluidized bed boiler with an ESP and FF. The estimation results of Hg emission from the stack, computed using the mass balance model, were confirmed using previously published data, which showed an average error of -0.35% between the Hg output and Hg input. Using this ratio provided a result similar to the amount of Hg emitted from the stack. Therefore, the mass balance model is the most reliable method in the given context. Thus, the results proved that this model estimation remains a cost effective and quick way to study Hg emission from a coal-fired power boiler.

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  • Randy Novirsa, Phan Dinh Quang, Huiho Jeong, Satoshi Fukushima, Yasuhi ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 119-125
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: June 05, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Utilization of mercury in artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) has become a global concern. A large amount of mercury is discharged into the environment and accumulated in the food chain. Paddy roots absorb mercury in the paddy field soil and accumulated in the rice grain during the ripening period. Consumption of Hg-contaminated rice leads to increase the burden of health problems, particularly in rice consumer countries. This study was aimed to evaluate mercury contamination level in the paddy field around ASGM area in Lebaksitu village, Indonesia. We collected soil, water, and rice paddy samples in three paddy field areas divided by distance to the Hg hotspot. The total mercury was determined using Mercury Analyzer MA-3000(NIC). An elevated mercury concentration was detected in soil (212 – 2465 µg/kg), water (0.008 – 0.927 µg/kg), and rice (27.38 – 219.88 µg/kg) in all paddy field sampling sites. The THg concentration tended to decrease along with the increase in distance with an order: PS1>PS2>PS3. The THg concentration in the paddy field soil exceeded the U.S.EPA standard for ecological soil screening (100 µg/kg) and the Indonesian standard for agricultural soil (500 µg/kg). Our study revealed that the paddy field in Lebaksitu Village had been contaminated by mercury wastewater distributed primarily from ASGM activities. The significant correlation of THg in rice and soil indicated that soil was the primary source of mercury in rice. Contamination of mercury in rice leads to increase the income of health impact among people who consume the rice as the staple food.

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  • Abdur Rahman, Nila Puspita Sari, Bambang Wispriyono, Randy Novirsa, Jo ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 127-136
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: August 05, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Artisanal and small-scale gold mining site in Gunung Pongkor, Bogor, had been contaminated with a high level of toxic chemicals. Long term exposure to toxic chemicals can cause adverse health effects among residents living around the mining area. To assess these issue, a total of 101 residents consisting of 60 adults, 15 teenagers, and 26 school age children were involved in a public health risk assessment study to estimate health risks from exposures to mercury, chromium, iron, manganese, arsenic, and selenium through ingestion of drinking water (n = 12) and foods (n = 45). The results showed that only mercury and hexavalent chromium had unacceptable life span noncarcinogenic risk quotient (RQ)>1. RQs of mercury among adult, teenager, and school age children were 22.2, 21.1, and 21.4,respectively, extremely high compared to chromium of only 1.4, 1.3, and 1.5 respectively. Arsenic, the only carcinogen, produced unacceptable lifetime excess cancer risk (ECR) of 2.04E-4, 5.23E-5, and 2.83E-5 in adults, teenager, and children, respectively, of which only adult ECR was unacceptable. In contrast, dietary intakes of iron and selenium were deficient. While skin problems including skin rashes, hyperpigmentation, and thickening were observed that might be associated with arsenic carcinogenicity, trivalent chromium intake was slightly excessive. In conclusion, mercury and hexavalent chromium were critical contaminants of overload exposure, whereas arsenic, trivalent chromium, and selenium were also crucial since indication of some related adverse health effects had already been observed.

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  • Yuriko Kono Hamada, Takashi Tomiyasu
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 137-142
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: August 10, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) environments have enriched concentrations of atmospheric mercury (Hg). Despite these conditions, ASGM workers are often accompanied by their family and small children as a part of their daily life. Furthermore, it can be considered that the elevated concentrations of airborne Hg in the workplace may also result in the contamination of food and drink consumed in the vicinity. Therefore, this study aimed to estimate Hg contamination of drinking water through air deposition in the ASGM workshop.

    Atmospheric Hg(II) and Hg(0) concentrations in the studied ASGM workshops were between 0.0004 and 177 μg/m3 (average 30.1 μg/m3) and 5.53 and 4,190 μg/m3 (average 853 μg/m3), respectively. Hg (II) and Hg(0) both reached their highest concentrations when the amalgam was burned. The ratios of Hg (II) concentration to total atmospheric Hg in the workshop was also elevated during the amalgam burning process. Furthermore, Hg(II) concentrations in the workshop were higher than that in a house, which served as a control,even when amalgam was not burned, indicating that the amalgam combustion-generated Hg(II) is persistent in the environment.

    Hg concentration in drinking water, which was collected in plastic (PP) cup put in the workshop, increased over a period of 24 h, with the proportion of Hg(II) rising from 0.5% before amalgam burning to 31% after the amalgam burning operation. This observation suggests that oxidized Hg, Hg(II), is easily dissolved in the aqueous phase; therefore, even the generation of gaseous Hg(II) can impact the health seriously.

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  • Habuer, Daisuke Hamaguchi, Yingjun Zhou, Takashi Fujimori, Masaki Tak ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 143-151
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: July 23, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Owing to rapid industrialization, Asia has become the main source of mercury emissions and a significant net importer of mercury.

    Therefore, the situation regarding excess mercury in Asia needs to be better understood. In this study, mercury flows and excess mercury in 2010–2050 in Asian regions, with a particular focus on China, are assessed under updated assumptions. The excess mercury in China in 2030 and 2050 is estimated to be 125 and 284 tons, respectively. The cumulative excess mercury in China will reach around 10,000 tons in 2050 under the assumption of no export of it in the years 2010–2050. In addition, the year in which mercury reaches a surplus in Asia (excl. China) is estimated to be 2039. The mercury supply in Asia strongly depends on the usage of excess mercury in China. It is estimated that mercury supplies will be insufficient in Asia until at least 2017. These predictions should support decision-making and planning for long-term storage capacity, discussions of regional coordination, securing of technical support, and development of the basic design of related facilities.

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  • Kuang-Wei Huang, Koji Arizono, Yuka Yakushiji, Jun Kobayashi, Yasuhiro ...
    Type: Research Papers
    2019 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 153-164
    Published: September 10, 2019
    Released: September 10, 2019
    [Advance publication] Released: September 02, 2019
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    We focus on technology for the treatment of mercury-containing waste and the current recycling situation for fluorescent lamps and dry batteries in Taiwan and Japan. In Taiwan, the recycling rates for fluorescent lamps and dry batteries are 88% and 45%, respectively,and in Japan, they are approximately 30% and 26%, respectively. This is despite the fact that Japan has good management systems and technologies for processing such waste. Taiwan’s recycling rates are unachievable in many countries and they show that Taiwan has efficient waste processing technologies and a sound waste management system. For Japan, we recommend the adoption of Taiwan’s recycling subsidy foundation system. Further, the producer responsibility system should be implemented for more than just industrial waste, and an independent database should be established for the amounts of mercury-containing products that are produced, sold, and recycled. This will improve control of mercury-containing waste and facilitate public inspection.

    Taiwan and Japan have good recycling technology for fluorescent lamps and dry batteries. In Japan, crushing and washing is used for fluorescent lamps and rotary kiln for dry batteries. In Taiwan, crushing thermal desorption is used for fluorescent lamps and batch process distillation for dry batteries. The methods followed in Japan have better processing efficiency and not only focus on fluorescent lamps and dry batteries but also on another mercury-containing waste and their constituent compounds. On the other hand, methods followed in Taiwan are applicable on a smaller scale and are suitable only for fluorescent lamps and dry batteries. As both technologies have their own advantages and disadvantages, countries should consider the national conditions and evaluate them before adopting one. Regarding mercury, Taiwan’s front-end recycling system is relatively better managed, while Japan has a relatively complete management system of solidifying technology and specifications at the back end. In response to international trends, Taiwan and other countries should execute further regulated and environmentally sound storage methods for recovered mercury.

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