A review of atmospheric mercury emissions, pollution and control in China
Mercury, as a global pollutant, has signifificant impacts on the environment and human health. The current state of atmospheric mercury emissions, pollution and control in China is comprehensively reviewed in this paper. With about 500–800 t of anthropogenic mercury emissions, China contributes 25%–40% to the global mercury emissions. The dominant mercury emission sources in China are coal combustion, non-ferrous metal smelting, cement production and iron and steel production. The mercury emissions from natural sources in China are equivalent to the anthropogenic mercury emissions. The atmospheric mercury concentration in China is about 2–10 times the background level of North Hemisphere. The mercury deposition flfluxes in remote areas in China are usually in the range of 10–50 μg∙m–2∙yr–1 . To reduce mercury emissions, legislations have been enacted for power plants, non-ferrous metal smelters and waste incinerators. Currently mercury contented in the flflue gas is mainly removed through existing air pollution control devices for sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particles. Dedicated mercury control technologies are required in the future to further mitigate the mercury emissions in China.