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Topic review
Updated time: 13 Sep 2021
Submitted by: Ghasan Fahim Huseien
Definition: Climate change is one of the most challenging problems that humanity has ever faced. With the rapid development in technology, a key feature of 5G networks is the increased level of connectivity between everyday objects, facilitated by faster internet speeds with smart facilities indicative of the forthcoming 5G-driven revolution in Internet of Things (IoT).
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Topic review
Updated time: 16 Apr 2021
Submitted by: Ille Gebeshuber
Definition: Acid rain has an acidity that is higher than that of normal rainwater. Normal rainwater is not neutral (which would be pH 7) but slightly acidic (it has a pH < 5.5), because some of the carbon dioxide CO2 dissolved in the water is present as carbonic acid H2CO3. In acid rain, chemicals from pollution and natural causes such as volcanic eruptions and emissions from vegetation increase the acidity of the water to as low as pH 4.4 to 4 (as measured in the 1990s in various places). Such acidic rainwater is dangerous for people, vegetation, water bodies including the oceans and its inhabitants, buildings and soil. Since the pH scale is logarithmic, a change from 5.5 to 4.5 means a tenfold increase in acidity. The three main pollutants that cause acid rain are the nitric oxides NO and NO2 (summarized as NOx) and sulfur dioxide SO2. These substances react with water to nitric acid HNO3 and sulfuric acid H2SO4. In the 1980s, in nearly all of Northern Europe and in the Northern United States, suddenly and unexpectedly, whole forests began to die (this effect got to be known as forest dieback). German forests especially experienced severe damage: from 8% in 1982 it increased to 50% in 1984, and stayed as such till 1987. The damage occurred amongst various tree species. Researchers established connections of this damage to acid rain. The mandatory installment of sulfur filters in coal power plants and of catalytic converters in cars in various industrialized countries reduced air pollution with the chemicals related to the formation of acid rain, and, although the forests are still not in perfect shape (about 20% are heavily impaired) a complete death was prevented.
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Topic review
Updated time: 08 Jun 2021
Submitted by: Regina Duarte
Definition: Atmospheric aerosol deposition (wet and dry) is an important source of macro and micronutrients (N, P, C, Si, and Fe) to the oceans. Most of the mass flux of air particles is made of fine mineral particles emitted from arid or semi-arid areas (e.g., deserts) and transported over long distances until deposition to the oceans. However, this atmospheric deposition is affected by anthropogenic activities, which heavily impacts the content and composition of aerosol constituents, contributing to the presence of potentially toxic elements (e.g., Cu). Under this scenario, the deposition of natural and anthropogenic aerosols will impact the biogeochemical cycles of nutrients and toxic elements in the ocean, also affecting (positively or negatively) primary productivity and, ultimately, the marine biota.
Entry Collection : Environmental Sciences
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Topic review
Updated time: 16 Apr 2021
Submitted by: Camila Rodrigues
Definition: Monitoring the microbial quality of water used in agriculture is important to reduce the likelihood of produce contamination and possible future foodborne outbreaks. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has established the Produce Safety Rule as part of the Food Safety Modernization Act to improve the safety of produce that is normally consumed raw during growing, harvesting, packing and holding activities. In order to comply with the rule, growers need to follow some standards for the microbial quality of water that is used on the produce field, however, more information on the water microbial profile is necessary in order to improve the accuracy of the testing.
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Topic review
Updated time: 15 Jul 2021
Submitted by: Nikolay Mashyanov
Definition: The GMOS (Global Mercury Observation System) project has the overall goal to develop a coordinated observing system to monitor mercury on a global scale. We present the long-term (2011 – 2020) air mercury monitoring data obtained at the Listvyanka station located at a shore of Lake Baikal, Siberia. The long-term monitoring shows obvious seasonal variation of the background mercury concentration in air, which increases in the cold and decreases in the warm season. The short-term anomalies are associated with the wind carrying the air from the industrial areas where several big coal-fired power plants are located. A positive correlation between the mercury, SO2 and NO2 concentrations is observed both in the short-term variations and in the monthly average concentrations. The analysis of forward and backward trajectories obtained with the HYSPLIT model demonstrates revealing of the mercury emissions sources. During the cruise of 2018, the continuous air mercury survey over Lake Baikal covered 1800 km. The average mercury concentration over Baikal is notably less in comparison with the average value obtained at the onshore Listvyanka station during the same days of cruise. That can lead to the conclusion that Baikal is a significant sink of the atmospheric mercury.
Entry Collection : Environmental Sciences
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Topic review
Updated time: 26 May 2021
Submitted by: Oyetola Ogunkunle
Definition: Air pollution is a precursor to many health issues such as difficulty breathing, asthma, lung and heart diseases, and cancer.
Entry Collection : Environmental Sciences
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Topic review Peer-reviewed Encyclopedia of COVID-19
Updated time: 01 Jul 2021
Submitted by: Gabriele Donzelli
Definition: Air pollution exposure is one of the greatest risks to health worldwide. It is estimated to be responsible for about 4.2 million deaths around the world every year owing to many serious diseases such as heart disease, stroke, acute and chronic respiratory diseases, and lung cancer. The WHO guideline limits are exceeded in several areas around the world, and it is estimated that about 90% of the world’s population is exposed to high air pollution levels, especially in low- and middle-income countries. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced governments to implement severe mobility restriction measures to limit the spread of the virus. This represented a unique opportunity to study the impact of mobility on urban air quality. Several studies which have investigated the relations between the quality of the air and such containment measures have shown the significant reduction of the main pollutants in the urban environment so to encourage the adoption of new approaches for the improvement of the quality of air in the cities. The aims of this entry are both a brief analysis and a discussion of the results presented in several papers to understand the relationships between COVID-19 containment measures and air quality in urban areas.
Entry Collection : COVID-19
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Topic review
Updated time: 28 May 2021
Submitted by: Sayed M. Bateni
Definition: The accurate forecast of air temperature plays an important role in water resources management, land–atmosphere interaction, and agriculture. However, it is difficult to accurately predict air temperature due to its non-linear and chaotic nature. Several deep learning techniques have been proposed over the last few decades to forecast air temperature.
Entry Collection : Environmental Sciences
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Topic review
Updated time: 20 Nov 2020
Definition: Alpha-emitting radioisotopes are the most radiotoxic nuclides among all radionuclides. Especially medium- and long-living isotopes that enter the body, are hazardous metals of the greatest importance from the human life point of view. This review focuses on the most common natural and anthropogenic origin alpha-emitting radionuclides in wild mushrooms around the world. Mushrooms are considered as suitable bioindicators of environmental pollution with some metallic elements, for the reason they bioaccumulate a range of mineral ionic constituents including radioactive elements at different levels. Various species have different retain capacities of individual radionuclides. In turn, wild edible mushrooms are food products, mostly consumed regionally and also traded at an international scale. Mushrooms under pollution events situation might cause a risk to consumers due to exposure to highly radiotoxic decay particles produced by alpha emitters.
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Topic review
Updated time: 13 Sep 2021
Submitted by: Fernanda Sousa
Definition: Brazil is the largest broiler meat exporter in the world. This important economic activity generates income in different branches of the production chain. However, the decomposition of residues incorporated in the poultry litter generates several gases, among them ammonia. When emitted from the litter to the air, ammonia can cause several damages to animals and man, in addition to being able to convert into a greenhouse gas.
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