Monitoring of PCBs at facilities related with PCB-containing products and wastes in South Korea

Guang Zhu Jin, Ming Liang Fang, Jung Ho Kang, Hyokeun Park, Sang Hyup Lee, Yoon Seok Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) contents were analyzed in samples collected from facilities related to PCB-containing products or wastes in South Korea. Average concentrations of the atmospheric Σ 209 PCBs were 7420 (37.0-104,048)pgm -3 and 16.8 (ND-34.2)fgWHO-TEQm -3 in indoor air samples; and 1670 (106-13,382)pgm -3 and 5.64 (ND-36.0)fgWHO-TEQm -3 in outdoor air samples. The highest levels were observed in indoor air samples from disposal facilities (7336-104,048pgm -3), followed by production (330-25,057pgm -3), recycling, and storage facilities, indicating that PCB emissions from PCB-containing products and wastes remains very high and the facilities related with those may be an important source to atmospheric PCBs. Principal component analysis of PCB profiles showed that the homologue patterns of PCBs in outdoor and indoor air samples collected from the facilities were similar to those of boundary air samples and PCB commercial products, e.g. Aroclor 1016, 1221, 1232 and 1242. Evaluation of the PCB mass balance in a facility, dismantling and solvent-washing PCB-contaminated transformers, showed that of the total PCBs treated in this facility, approximately 0.0022% was emitted to the atmosphere, and most was transferred to waste oil for disposal by incineration or chemical methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-301
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of hazardous materials
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Nov 30

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MEST) (No. 2011-1128723 ), and partially supported by the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) as the Institutional Program ( 2E22173 ).


  • Emission factor
  • Inventory
  • PCBs
  • South Korea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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