How has the relocation of a monitoring site changed our understanding of UK rural atmospheric mercury?

Kentisbeer, John; Leeson, Sarah; Ritchie, Stuart. 2017 How has the relocation of a monitoring site changed our understanding of UK rural atmospheric mercury? [Poster] In: 13th International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant, Providence, Rhode Island, 16-21 July 2017. (Unpublished)

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Since January 2016, total gaseous mercury (TGM) has been monitored at Chilbolton, Hampshire, UK. Chilbolton became one of the UKs two EMEP supersites (Level II) in 2016 as a replacement for the Harwell Supersite, Oxfordshire, England. Chilbolton is operated by Ricardo-AEA on behalf of the UK Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Mercury in air monitoring is undertaken at the site as part of the UK Eutrophying and Acidifying Pollutants (UKEAP) monitoring network run by the UK’s Centre for Ecology & Hydrology. The monitoring site is in a rural setting surrounded by agricultural fields, a short distance from a small village and satellite observatory located at 51.144°N, 1.438°W. Total gaseous mercury (comprising elemental and gaseous oxidised mercury) was monitored using a Tekran 2537A mercury vapour analyser, run at a resolution of 5 minutes, using dual channels allowing for continuous monitoring. The average TGM concentration at Chilbolton for January – October 2016 was 1.38 ng m-3, whilst the 2015 average for Harwell was 1.44 ng m-3. Both sites showing lower averages than the northern hemispherical background observed in other studies. We present an initial overview of TGM measurements at the Chilbolton supersite since January 2016 and compares the data to that collected at the previous Supersite at Harwell between 2012 and 2015. We have used wind sector analysis, cluster analysis and air-mass back trajectories in the OpenAir package in the R statistical software, we show how the TGM concentrations are influenced by local and regional sources (< 50 km) as well as long-range sources at both sites. Previous work has shown that Harwell was significantly impacted by local sources, through its science campus location and potential mercury remissions due to activity on site, and from its relatively short distance from a coal-fired power station. We address the question of what new or different sources or influences (local or otherwise) are influencing TGM at Chilbolton? What effect has changing monitoring location had on the data? Are the sites comparable? How does that change the context and understanding of atmospheric mercury in the UK?

Item Type: Publication - Conference Item (Poster)
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Atmospheric Chemistry and Effects (Science Area 2017-)
NORA Subject Terms: Atmospheric Sciences
Date made live: 06 Apr 2018 10:17 +0 (UTC)

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