Atmospheric polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and Pb isotopes at a remote site in Southwestern China: Implications for monsoon-associated transport

Yue Xu, Gan Zhang, Jun Li, Xiang Liu, Xiangdong Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


A 13-month sampling campaign was conducted at a remote site in southwestern China from October, 2005 to December, 2006. An integrated approach with lead isotopes and air back trajectory analysis was used to investigate the monsoon-associated atmospheric transport of PBDEs in tropical/subtropical Asia regions. The air concentration of PBDEs ranged from 1.6 to 57.5pgm-3(15.9±12.0pgm-3), comparable to reported levels at other remote sites in the world. BDE-209, followed by BDE-47 and -99 dominated the PBDE compositions, indicating a mixed deca- and penta-BDE source. Air mass back trajectory analysis revealed that the major potential source regions of BDE-47 and -99 could be southern China and Thailand, while those of BDE-209 are widely distributed in industrialized and urbanized areas in tropical Asia. The different lead isotope compositions of aerosols between trajectory clusters further substantiated the observation that the South Asian monsoon from spring to summer could penetrate deep into southwestern China, and facilitate long-range transport of airborne pollutants from South Asia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4564-4571
Number of pages8
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2011


  • Asian monsoon
  • Atmospheric transport
  • Pb isotope
  • PBDEs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

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