Road to Pollution
Have we overlooked the role of asphalt as a source of air pollution precursors in urban environments?
Lauren Robertson | | Quick Read
As our urban air quality improves – thanks to decades of research and regulations – it’s possible we have overlooked a significant source of pollution: our roads. In a recent study, researchers at Yale University suggest that asphalt could be a major contributor to non-combustion-related pollution in urban areas (1).
The team was already looking at the role of non-traditional sources of reactive, gas-phase, organic compounds on urban air quality when they decided to focus their attention on larger organic compounds in the intermediate and semi-volatile range. These are important for secondary organic aerosol formation, but less is known about their emissions from non-combustion sources, such as asphalt.
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- P Khare et al., Science Advances, 6, 9785 (2020). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abb9785