A DEEP DIVE INTO THE CHRONIC AIR POLLUTION REALITY IN BAIA MARE: PART II: AIR QUALITY EVOLUTION BETWEEN 1995 - 2006
Valentina-Mariana Manoiu1*, Razvan Madalin Spiridon2, Marina Antonescu3
1Assoc.Prof.Dr, Faculty of Geography, University of Bucharest, ROMANIA, firstname.lastname@example.org
2Environmental Consultant, Auditeco GES, Bucharest, ROMANIA, email@example.com
3Master Student, Faculty of Geography, University of Bucharest, ROMANIA, firstname.lastname@example.org
Baia Mare, the former mining and metallurgical industry capital of Romania, is one of the most problematic areas in the country in terms of historical pollution and its consequences. The present paper, as the second part of a complex three-piece study, aims to analyze the air quality evolution in Baia Mare between 1995 and 2006. In the previous piece, the first of this series, we provided an overview of the sources of historical air pollution in Baia Mare. In the third and final scientific paper, we will analyze the effects of this chronic pollution on human health. This article constitutes an analysis of the air quality in Baia Mare, representing a historical investigation of this important environmental issue in the city’s area. Our work updates and expands the body of information provided by previous papers on the topic of environmental pollution in Baia Mare, its purpose being to highlight the chronic air pollution with sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, ammonia, suspended and sedimentary particulate matters, as well as heavy metals between 1995 and 2006. As a result of the above, it can be concluded that the air quality in Baia Mare in 1995 – 2006 was especially critical due to high concentrations of particulate matters presenting high lead and cadmium content, as well as high sulphur dioxide concentrations. These pollutants were generated by mining and metallurgical units (Remin, Phoenix/Cuprom and Romplumb Corporations), alongside other factors: tailing dumps and tailing ponds in the Baia Mare area, where the particulates were spread around by the air currents; industrial and residential heating equipments with solid fuel; road traffic, including road dust resuspension; mix-asphalt installations; woodworking etc. The calm weather conditions, unfavourable to the dispersion of pollutants in the Baia Mare area, have also contributed to the air quality deterioration. However, for the selected timeframe, the pollutant evolution tendency in the local atmosphere showed a decrease of the heavy metal and sulphur dioxide concentrations, which was a result of reduced productive activity for all the local heavy-polluters and not due to the investments aimed at improving urban air quality, which did not lead to any significant changes. Currently, Remin and Romplumb Corporations are insolvent and Cuprom Corporation is bankrupt.
Keywords: Baia Mare, historical pollution, air quality, sulphur dioxide, particulate matter, heavy metals
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