Managing emissions from highly industrialized areas: Regulatory compliance under uncertainty

M. El-Fadel, L. Abi-Esber, T. Ayash

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    11 Scopus citations


    The use of regulatory and compliance-based modeling for air quality impact assessment is invariably relied upon to predict future air quality under various management scenarios particularly where air quality monitoring data are limited. This paper examines the dispersion from a multi-stack cement manufacturing complex with associated quarries and transport activities for regulatory compliance under uncertain emission and meteorological conditions. The concentrations of CO, NOx, SO2 and PM at sensitive receptor locations were used as indicators in comparison to World Health Organization (WHO) interim guidelines. Exceedance exposure areas were delineated under bounded uncertainties in input emission factors and meteorological parameters. Planning and management initiatives were tested to control/minimize potential exposure. Compared to the case of low emissions and actual meteorological conditions, the consideration of worst emissions coupled to worst meteorological conditions enlarged the boundaries of the exceedance exposure areas considerably. The implementation of best available technologies and enforcement of emission standards improved air quality in the region significantly and lowered the exposure at many population centers to below health standards. Uncertainty in the output of atmospheric dispersion models continues to play a significant role to be considered at the point where science is translated into political decision making.

    Original languageBritish English
    Pages (from-to)5015-5026
    Number of pages12
    JournalAtmospheric Environment
    Issue number32
    StatePublished - Oct 2009


    • Air quality impact assessment
    • Air quality management
    • Cement emissions
    • Chekka
    • Lebanon


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