Research press release





今回、John Liggioたちは、カナダ上空での航空機測定と室内実験とモデル研究を組み合わせて、SOAに対するオイルサンド採掘量の寄与について定量的評価を行った。その結果、Liggioたちは、採掘されたオイルサンドから排出される有機蒸気の蒸発と大気中での酸化が、航空機測定で記録されたSOAの大部分の発生の直接的原因であり、SOA産生速度が1日当たり45~84トンになったと結論付けた。


Oil sand extraction operations are responsible for the production of large amounts of specific air pollutants known as secondary organic aerosols (SOAs) observed during airborne measurements in Canada, finds a study published in Nature this week.

Oil production from oil sands is the cause of numerous environmental concerns, but the contribution of oil sand exploration to SOAs - a component of atmospheric particulate matter formed from the chemical transformation of atmospheric organic compounds, which are known to affect air quality and climate - has remained unclear.

John Liggio and colleagues combined aircraft measurements taken over Canada, laboratory experiments and a modelling study to provide a quantitative assessment of the contribution of oil sand emissions to SOAs. They find that evaporation and atmospheric oxidation of organic vapours emitted from the mined oil sands are directly responsible for the formation of the majority of SOAs recorded in the airborne measurements, resulting in an SOA production rate of 45-84 tonnes per day.

These findings suggest that oil sands are one of the largest sources of anthropogenic SOAs in North America. The authors propose that these atmospheric effects should be taken into account when assessing the global environmental impacts of current and planned bitumen and heavy oil extraction projects.

doi: 10.1038/nature17646

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