Journal of Atmospheric Chemistry

, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 201–214 | Cite as

Natural and anthropogenic C2 to C6 hydrocarbons in the central-eastern Venezuelan atmosphere during the rainy season

  • Loreto Donoso
  • Rodrigo Romero
  • Alberto Rondón
  • Emmanuel Fernandez
  • Pedro Oyola
  • Eugenio Sanhueza


The levels of low molecular weight hydrocarbons were measured at pristine sites and rural locations affected by hydrocarbon emissions from oil and gas producing fields in Venezuela. At the clean sites, lower concentrations of C2 to C6 alkanes were observed, whereas, in comparison with remotes sites, very much higher levels were measured at the polluted sites. Alkenes present relatively high concentrations, with isoprene being the most abundant, all over the study region. The main sources of alkenes are likely to be natural, mainly from vegetation. The levels of alkanes recorded at the clean sites and the alkene levels found everywhere in the region are in agreement with the values reported for other clean sites in the tropics. The increase of ozone production capacity due to the anthropogenic emissions of alkanes from oil and gas fields was estimated. Due to the presence in the atmosphere of important amounts of naturally emitted isoprene, ethene and propene, which makes a substantial contribution to the reactivity of the hydrocarbon mixture, a small increase (<5%) was estimated to occur in the capacity of the ozone production at a regional scale during the rainy season.

Key words

nonmethane hydrocarbons isoprene tropical atmosphere oil field emissions potential ozone formation 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Loreto Donoso
    • 1
  • Rodrigo Romero
    • 2
  • Alberto Rondón
    • 1
  • Emmanuel Fernandez
    • 1
  • Pedro Oyola
    • 2
  • Eugenio Sanhueza
    • 1
  1. 1.Atmospheric Chemistry Lab.IVICCaracasVenezuela
  2. 2.Air Pollution Lab., ITMStockholm UniversitySweden

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