Dispersion and emission patterns of NO2 from gas flaring stations in the Niger Delta, Nigeria
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The dispersion of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) emitted from gas flaring stacks affect the environment and human health negatively. This study assessed the spatial and temporal patterns of NO2 emissions from gas flaring stations in the Niger Delta between January 2017 and December 2018. NO2 was measured using Aeroqual gas monitor. The data of NO2 concentrations were analysed using SPSS for Windows. Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory Model was adopted to predict the dispersion of NO2 from the gas flaring stations. Results revealed that flare stations in Rivers State emitted the highest concentrations of NO2 varying from 0.029 to 0.036 mg/m3 in 2017 and 0.031 to 0.034 mg/m3 in 2018. NO2 emissions from each gas flaring station were generally higher in 2017 than 2018 by about 0.002 mg/m3. There was an increase in the concentration of NO2 by about 0.002 mg/m3 in the wet season over the dry season. Increase in temperature might have led to increase in NO2 concentrations (r = 0.047–0.377). An inverse relationship was recorded between relative humidity and NO2 (r = − 0.005 to − 0.412). Wind speed showed negative correlations with NO2 in the dry season (r = − 0.148 to − 0.139) and weak positive correlation (r = 0.104–0.074) in the wet season. Many states in Nigeria were identified as the receptors of the dispersed NO2 from the gas flaring stations. The study concluded that people susceptible to respiratory ailments should protect themselves from the impacts of NO2 pollution in the Niger Delta.
KeywordsModelling Spatial and temporal patterns Meteorology Air pollution
The authors gratefully acknowledge the NOAA Air Resources Laboratory (ARL) for the provision of the HYSPLIT transport and dispersion model used in this publication.
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