journal article

The influence of emerging atmospheric organophosphorus flame retardants from land source emissions on the East China Sea


Organophosphate flame retardants (OPFRs) pose a new challenge to the marine environment due to their toxicity and persistence. This study explores the contributions of OPFR emissions from different land sources and sectors to its contamination of the East China Sea (ECS) using a novel atmospheric transport model(ChnMETOP)for POPs and a marine food web model. The results show that the major land sources causing OPFR pollution in the ECS were situated in Yangtze River Delta (YRD) and middle reach areas of China's Yangtze River, confirming that source proximity made most significant contributions to OPFR pollution in the ECS. Among those OPFR emission sectors, industrial emissions accounted for the highest modeled OPFR levels in the seawaters, followed by the OPFR usage process in textile, plastic, and rubber products. Assessment of bioaccumulation of OPFR in the marine food web of the ECS and the potential risk in commercial fish consumers reveals lower exposure risk via dietary fish ingestion. However, the risk might increase if OPFRs are continuously bioaccumulated in the biotic and released into the abiotic marine environment. This study simultaneously identified both the source locations and emission sectors, thereby providing important policy implications in mitigating OPFR pollution in the ECS marine environment.
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