Human health risk assessment of exposure to indoor mercury vapour in a Ghanaian artisanal small-scale gold mining community

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Human health risk assessment of exposure to indoor mercury vapour in a Ghanaian artisanal small-scale gold mining community. / Gyamfi, Opoku; Sorenson, Peter Borgen; Darko, Godfred; Ansah, Eugene; Bak, Jesper Leth.

I: Chemosphere, Bind 241, 125014, 02.2020.

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift/Konferencebidrag i tidsskrift /Bidrag til avisTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

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@article{667ec59be63b472e8be7bf1f8f91cb83,
title = "Human health risk assessment of exposure to indoor mercury vapour in a Ghanaian artisanal small-scale gold mining community",
abstract = "People living or working in and around artisanal small-scale gold mining communities can be exposed to mercury vapour, which may negatively affect their health. In this study, the human exposure to air borne mercury in an artisanal mining community in the Upper East region of Ghana was investigated using Lumex RA 915 M mercury analyser, an active sampler. The concentration of mercury in air was measured inside and outside households and was related to human health risk standards. For each household, one measurement was taken from outside and three from inside at different positions. About 91% of the households where amalgam burning was reported had concentrations higher than the USEPA reference dose of 300 ng m−3 whereas 64% of the households where amalgam burning was not reported exceeded the reference dose above. The maximal (upper) instrumental limit (50,000 ng m−3) was passed for the highest concentrations, so, the upper 97.5% concentration was estimated, using censored statistics, to exceed 800,000 ng m−3 for the fireplaces. This exceeds any reported indoor household air concentration of Hg, identified by the literature review in this paper. Estimated hazard quotients were found to range from <1 to 108 within the households that are reported not to burn amalgam. In the households where amalgam burning reportedly takes place, the hazard quotient had a range of 0.01–160. Mercury concentrations measured in households with reported amalgam burning are approximately ten times higher than those households with no reported burning of amalgam. The censored data predicted hazard quotients up to 966. The results indicate that both miners and non-miners of the community are at risk of adverse health effects resulting from inhalation of mercury vapour.",
keywords = "Artisanal gold mining, Hazard quotient, Health risk assessment, Mercury in air",
author = "Opoku Gyamfi and Sorenson, {Peter Borgen} and Godfred Darko and Eugene Ansah and Bak, {Jesper Leth}",
year = "2020",
month = feb,
doi = "10.1016/j.chemosphere.2019.125014",
language = "English",
volume = "241",
journal = "Chemosphere",
issn = "0045-6535",
publisher = "Pergamon Press",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Human health risk assessment of exposure to indoor mercury vapour in a Ghanaian artisanal small-scale gold mining community

AU - Gyamfi, Opoku

AU - Sorenson, Peter Borgen

AU - Darko, Godfred

AU - Ansah, Eugene

AU - Bak, Jesper Leth

PY - 2020/2

Y1 - 2020/2

N2 - People living or working in and around artisanal small-scale gold mining communities can be exposed to mercury vapour, which may negatively affect their health. In this study, the human exposure to air borne mercury in an artisanal mining community in the Upper East region of Ghana was investigated using Lumex RA 915 M mercury analyser, an active sampler. The concentration of mercury in air was measured inside and outside households and was related to human health risk standards. For each household, one measurement was taken from outside and three from inside at different positions. About 91% of the households where amalgam burning was reported had concentrations higher than the USEPA reference dose of 300 ng m−3 whereas 64% of the households where amalgam burning was not reported exceeded the reference dose above. The maximal (upper) instrumental limit (50,000 ng m−3) was passed for the highest concentrations, so, the upper 97.5% concentration was estimated, using censored statistics, to exceed 800,000 ng m−3 for the fireplaces. This exceeds any reported indoor household air concentration of Hg, identified by the literature review in this paper. Estimated hazard quotients were found to range from <1 to 108 within the households that are reported not to burn amalgam. In the households where amalgam burning reportedly takes place, the hazard quotient had a range of 0.01–160. Mercury concentrations measured in households with reported amalgam burning are approximately ten times higher than those households with no reported burning of amalgam. The censored data predicted hazard quotients up to 966. The results indicate that both miners and non-miners of the community are at risk of adverse health effects resulting from inhalation of mercury vapour.

AB - People living or working in and around artisanal small-scale gold mining communities can be exposed to mercury vapour, which may negatively affect their health. In this study, the human exposure to air borne mercury in an artisanal mining community in the Upper East region of Ghana was investigated using Lumex RA 915 M mercury analyser, an active sampler. The concentration of mercury in air was measured inside and outside households and was related to human health risk standards. For each household, one measurement was taken from outside and three from inside at different positions. About 91% of the households where amalgam burning was reported had concentrations higher than the USEPA reference dose of 300 ng m−3 whereas 64% of the households where amalgam burning was not reported exceeded the reference dose above. The maximal (upper) instrumental limit (50,000 ng m−3) was passed for the highest concentrations, so, the upper 97.5% concentration was estimated, using censored statistics, to exceed 800,000 ng m−3 for the fireplaces. This exceeds any reported indoor household air concentration of Hg, identified by the literature review in this paper. Estimated hazard quotients were found to range from <1 to 108 within the households that are reported not to burn amalgam. In the households where amalgam burning reportedly takes place, the hazard quotient had a range of 0.01–160. Mercury concentrations measured in households with reported amalgam burning are approximately ten times higher than those households with no reported burning of amalgam. The censored data predicted hazard quotients up to 966. The results indicate that both miners and non-miners of the community are at risk of adverse health effects resulting from inhalation of mercury vapour.

KW - Artisanal gold mining

KW - Hazard quotient

KW - Health risk assessment

KW - Mercury in air

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85072891846&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2019.125014

DO - 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2019.125014

M3 - Journal article

C2 - 31600621

AN - SCOPUS:85072891846

VL - 241

JO - Chemosphere

JF - Chemosphere

SN - 0045-6535

M1 - 125014

ER -