New measurements of reactive forms of mercury will support enforcement of effective air pollution monitoring
Mercury, emitted by both natural and anthropogenic sources, is highly toxic to humans, animals and ecosystems, and as such is regulated by numerous EU Directives, including the Industrial Emissions Directive, the Air Quality Directive and the Waste Incineration Directive.
In addition to its elemental form, mercury exists in reactive oxidized forms that can be transformed into other species, such as methylmercury - the most toxic mercury species and the one most prone to bioaccumulation in aquatic systems.
However, currently, traceable calibration methods only exist for elemental mercury.
This project has used results from EMRP projects ENV02 PartEmission and ENV51 MeTra to address this gap in capability and develop traceable measurements, monitoring and control of mercury and its different chemical forms, in both industrial flue gases and in the atmosphere, to improve measurement comparability and uncertainties.
This has provided crucial support to the enforcement of future global and European regulations governing mercury pollution, and the protection of human health and the environment.
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American Journal of Analytical Chemistry