Physicochemical factors and their potential sources inferred from long-term rainfall measurements at an urban and a remote rural site in tropical areas

Firoz Khan, Khairul Nizam Abdul Maulud, Mohd Talib Latif, Jing Xiang Chung, Norhaniza Amil, Azwani Alias, Mohd Shahrul Mohd Nadzir, Mazrura Sahani, Maznorizan Mohammad, Mohd Firdaus Jahaya, Hanashriah Hassan, Farah Jeba, Norhayati Md Tahir, Sharifah Mastura Syed Abdullah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Air pollution can be detected through rainwater composition. In this study, long-term measurements (2000–2014) of wet deposition were made to evaluate the physicochemical interaction and the potential sources of pollution due to changes of land use. The rainwater samples were obtained from an urban site in Kuala Lumpur and a highland-rural site in the middle of Peninsular Malaysia. The compositions of rainwater were obtained from the Malaysian Meteorological Department. The results showed that the urban site experienced more acidity in rainwater (avg = 277 mm, range of 13.8 to 841 mm; pH = 4.37) than the rural background site (avg = 245 mm, range of 2.90 to 598 mm; pH = 4.97) due to higher anthropogenic input of acid precursors. The enrichment factor (EF) analysis showed that at both sites, SO4 2 −, Ca2 + and K+ were less sensitive to seawater but were greatly influenced by soil dust. NH4 + and Ca2 + can neutralise a larger fraction of the available acid ions in the rainwater at the urban and rural background sites. However, acidifying potential was dominant at urban site compared to rural site. Source-receptor relationship via positive matrix factorisation (PMF 5.0) revealed four similar major sources at both sites with a large variation of the contribution proportions. For urban, the major sources influence on the rainwater chemistry were in the order of secondary nitrates and sulfates > ammonium-rich/agricultural farming > soil components > marine sea salt and biomass burning, while at the background site the order was secondary nitrates and sulfates > marine sea salt and biomass burning = soil components > ammonia-rich/agricultural farming. The long-term trend showed that anthropogenic activities and land use changes have greatly altered the rainwater compositions in the urban environment while the seasonality strongly affected the contribution of sources in the background environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1401-1416
Number of pages16
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume613-614
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2018

Fingerprint

rainwater
Rain
rainfall
Soils
Land use
urban site
Nitrates
Sulfates
Biomass
Salts
Chemical analysis
sea salt
Acids
biomass burning
Factor analysis
Air pollution
Factorization
Ammonium Compounds
Seawater
Ammonia

Keywords

  • Chemical compositions
  • Haze pollution
  • Land use change
  • Positive matrix factorisation
  • Precipitation
  • Southeast Asia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

Cite this

Physicochemical factors and their potential sources inferred from long-term rainfall measurements at an urban and a remote rural site in tropical areas. / Khan, Firoz; Abdul Maulud, Khairul Nizam; Latif, Mohd Talib; Chung, Jing Xiang; Amil, Norhaniza; Alias, Azwani; Mohd Nadzir, Mohd Shahrul; Sahani, Mazrura; Mohammad, Maznorizan; Jahaya, Mohd Firdaus; Hassan, Hanashriah; Jeba, Farah; Tahir, Norhayati Md; Syed Abdullah, Sharifah Mastura.

In: Science of the Total Environment, Vol. 613-614, 01.02.2018, p. 1401-1416.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Amil, Norhaniza

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