Study on each phase characteristics of the whole coal life cycle and their ecological risk assessment—a case of coal in China

Dai, W., Dong, J., Yan, W. and Xu, J. (2017) Study on each phase characteristics of the whole coal life cycle and their ecological risk assessment—a case of coal in China. Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 24(2), pp. 1296-1305. (doi: 10.1007/s11356-016-7808-5)

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Abstract

The paper divided the whole coal life cycle, explained each phase characteristics, and took coal mine in China as a study case to assess the ecological risk in coal utilization phase. The main conclusions are as follows: (1) the whole coal life cycle is divided into coal mining, processing, transportation, utilization, and waste disposal. (2) The key points of production organization and characteristics in the five phases have great differences. The coal mining phase is characterized by the damage of the key ecological factors (water, soil, atmosphere, vegetation, etc.) damaged while the coal processing phase by discharging waste. The characteristics in coal transportation phase mainly performance as escaping and migration of atmospheric pollutants. In coal utilization phase, the main characteristics are aggravation of greenhouse effect. The main characteristics of waste disposal phase are accumulation of negative ecological effects on the land. (3) The ecological risk of soil heavy metals is serious in coal utilization phase. The potential ecological hazard coefficients of Pb and As in coal, residue and ash are all lower than 40, presenting low environmental impact on soil; the potential ecological risk coefficients of Cd are higher than 60, nearly half of their potential ecological risk coefficients are higher than 160, which presents high environmental pollution impact on soil; Hg’s potential ecological risk coefficients are higher than 320, presenting the highest environmental pollution impact on soil; the comprehensive pollution indexes in coal, residue, and ash are relatively high, which means the pollution hazard potential to soil environment is high. (4) The ecological risk of the atmospheric solid suspended matter is relatively strong in coal utilization phase. The ecological risk of Cd and As in primary flue gas is both lower than net flue gas. The geoaccumulation indexes of Cd and Hg in primary flue gas and net flue gas are both higher than 5, presenting the very strong ecological risk; 50 % of the geoaccumulation index values of As are between 3 and 4, which has also presenting a strong ecological risk while Pb does not present the ecological risk characterization.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:We gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (51374208) and National Science and Technology Basic Project (2014FY110800).
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Xu, Dr Jiren
Authors: Dai, W., Dong, J., Yan, W., and Xu, J.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Interdisciplinary Studies
Journal Name:Environmental Science and Pollution Research
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0944-1344
ISSN (Online):1614-7499
Published Online:22 October 2016
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 Springer-Verlag
First Published:First published in Environmental Science and Pollution Research 2492): 1296-1305
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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