Exposure to air pollutants in Vietnam: Assessing potential risk for tourists

Pallavi Pant , Whitney Huynh , Richard E. Peltier


Received July 21, 2017,Revised , Accepted January 24, 2018, Available online February 03, 2018

Volume 30,2018,Pages 147-154

Tourism can form an important component of a nation's GDP, and Vietnam is among the most visited countries in Southeast Asia. Most studies on personal exposure focus on the general population, or occupational cohorts with exposure to specific pollutants. However, short-term exposure to air pollutants while visiting regions with high levels of air pollution can lead to acute health effects. A personal exposure study was conducted across three cities in Vietnam to estimate exposure to particulate matter (PM2.5) and black carbon for tourists. Measurements were conducted during the wet season in 2014 in Ho Chi Minh City, Da Lat and Nha Trang using portable instrumentation. Average 24-hr PM2.5 and BC exposures were estimated as 18.9 ± 9.24 and 3.41 ± 1.33 μg/m3 and among the three cities, Ho Chi Minh was found to have the highest PM2.5 concentrations. Environmental tobacco smoke, commuting and street food stands were found to contribute to highest levels of exposure to PM2.5 and BC across all cities.

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