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Revista Española de Salud Pública

On-line version ISSN 2173-9110Print version ISSN 1135-5727


LOPEZ VILLARRUBIA, Elena et al. Characterization of the atmospheric environment in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain: 2000-2004. Rev. Esp. Salud Publica [online]. 2008, vol.82, n.5, pp.493-507. ISSN 2173-9110.

Background: The island factor in the cities of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and Santa Cruz de Tenerife, their meteorology and the proximity to the African Continent that originates the natural particulate matter transport over the islands, cause some specific features in their air quality. The aim of this paper is to characterize the air pollution from 2000 to 2004 as exposure indicator of both cities´ inhabitants. Methods: 24 hour daily average variables of PM10, PM2,5, NO2, SO2 and O3 , 8 hours daily maxima moving averages of O3 y CO and 1 hour maxima of SO2, NO2, O3, CO, PM10 y PM2,5 were calculated. Daily levels of coarse particles were obtained subtracting PM2,5 from PM10. African dust events were identified. Results: In Sta. Cruz de Tf daily means of SO2 (14.0µg/m3N) and ozone levels (44.4 µg/m3N ) were higher than Las Palmas de GC levels (8.0 y 28.3 µg/m3N). Daily means of NO2 in Las Palmas de GC: 45.8 µg/m3N where higher than Sta. Cruz de Tf levels: 30.3 µg/m3N. Due to African dust outbreaks, some days in both cities exceeded 600 µg/m3 of PM10 and 200 of PM2.5 24-h average. Conclusions: The air quality patterns were characterized by very high levels of African dust outbreaks that affect all PM size fractions. Different O3 seasonality exists respect European cities in addition to an urban-industrial ambient air in Sta. Cruz de TF and clearly urban in Las Palmas de GC. These results have to be considered in order to lay the foundations to suitable surveillance systems, analyse the potential impact on the Canary Islands citizens’ health and to get conclusions.

Keywords : Air pollution; PM10; PM2,5; Sulphur dioxide; Nitrogen dioxide; Ozone; carbon monoxide.

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