Factors affecting the occurrence and transport of atmospheric organochlorines in the China Sea and the northern Indian and South East Atlantic Oceans

Rosalinda Gioia, Jun Li, Jasmin Schuster, Yanlin Zhang, Gan Zhang, Xiangdong Li, Baruch Spiro, Ravinder S. Bhatia, Jordi Dachs, Kevin C. Jones

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are reported in 97 air samples collected on board the RV Polarstern in November 2007 from the equator to Cape Town, South Africa and the MV Oceanic II (The Scholar Ship) in January-March 2008 from Shanghai, China to Cape Verde in the Central Atlantic Ocean. The atmospheric concentrations were higher close to the coast and lower in remote regions of the Indian and South Atlantic Ocean. Groups of samples were selected in the South China Sea, Indian Ocean and South Atlantic Ocean where the relative wind direction matched the trajectory of the ship, thus all the samples had the same input of sources upwind. In these three regions the concentrations of OCPs and PCBs declined during atmospheric transport following first order kinetics. These sets of measurements provided estimates of field derived residence times (FDRTs) for individual compounds. These values were compared with predicted atmospheric residence times (PARTs) computed using a model of long-range atmospheric transport potential of POPs. The FDRTs are 5-10 times longer for the more volatile PCB congeners and TC, CC, p,p′-DDT and p,p′-DDE than the respective PARTs, while they are similar to PARTs for the less volatile compounds. Possible causes of discrepancies between PARTs and FDRTs are discussed, and revolatilization from the ocean surface seems to be the main cause for the higher values of FDRTs of the more volatile compounds in comparison with the respective PARTs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10012-10021
Number of pages10
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 18 Sep 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry

Cite this