Dominant impact of residential wood burning on particulate matter in Alpine valleys during winter

Sönke Szidat, André S H Prévôt, Jisca Sandradewi, M. Rami Alfarra, Hans Arno Synal, Lukas Wacker, Urs Baltensperger

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    Within the project AEROWOOD (Aerosols from wood burning versus other sources), particulate matter was collected at two Swiss Alpine valleys during winter. Apportionment of aerosols from transit traffic and residential wood burning was performed using radiocarbon (14C) determinations of the organic carbon (OC) and elemental carbon (EC) fractions. On daily average, 88% and 65% of the total carbonaceous matter (including all other atoms than carbon) originated from non-fossil sources inside and outside of the village, respectively, which is mainly attributed to wood burning. These proportions were generally higher during the evening compared to morning hours, when traffic intensity waned and heating activities increased. 14C measurements of EC indicated episodes of both nearly pure traffic and wood-burning sources, respectively, of which the latter extreme has not been observed for EC under ambient conditions before. Results show that regulatory measures for the improvement of air quality must consider residential wood burning as an important source even in industrialized countries. Copyright 2007 by the American Geophysical Union.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article numberL05820
    JournalGeophysical Research Letters
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2007


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