• Editorial

Evaporative emissions from tailings ponds are not likely an important source of airborne PAHs in the Athabasca oil sands region

Citation

Ahad, J. M., Gammon, P. R., Gobeil, C., Jautzy, J., Krupa, S., Savard, M. M., & Studabaker, W. (2014). Evaporative emissions from tailings ponds are not likely an important source of airborne PAHs in the Athabasca oil sands region. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 111(24), E2439. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1403515111

Abstract

In their paper, Parajulee and Wania (1) use a multimedia fate model to argue that emissions of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in environmental impact assessments conducted to approve developments in the Athabasca oil sands region (AOSR) are likely underestimated. The discrepancy between their model and reported emissions was mainly attributed to indirect evaporative releases of PAHs from tailings ponds (TPs). <br><br>With the exception of naphthenic acids, dissolved concentrations of most organic contaminants in TPs and in adjacent shallow groundwater are very low (2?–4). Recently, Wang et al. (3) reported concentrations <0.8 µg/L for total US Environmental Protection Agency PAHs in two unspecified TPs. In another study, …