In this work two examples of the use of pollutants atmospheric dispersion modelling for the study of the risk of spontaneous abortion and birth of congenital anomalies due to the emissions from municipal waste incineration plants are shown. The main purposes of the work are to show the importance of atmospheric dispersion modelling for epidemiological studies and to discuss advantages and disadvantages of the different models used. For this study the emissions of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, dibenzofurans and biphenyls (PCDD/F) from the municipal waste incinerators of Modena (Italy, Case A) and of Reggio Emilia (Italy, Case B) have been considered. Ground-level (0 – 10 m) concentrations of PCDD/F over the city of Modena were computed using the ARIA Industry dispersion model for the period from 1 October, 2005 to 1 October, 2006. Ground-level concentrations of PCDD/F over the city of Reggio Emilia were computed using the WinDimula 3.0 model for the years 1999, 2000 and 2001, and for the period from 1 July, 2005 to 30 June, 2006. The ground level concentration grids computed by the models were exported in a GIS along with rates of spontaneous abortion and prevalence at birth of congenital anomalies in women residing or working near the incinerators. Successively, the maps of exposure to PCDD/F and of risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes have been computed in the GIS environment. In both the cases the study results provide little evidence of an excess risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes in women exposed to emissions from a modern municipal solid waste incinerator.
Atmospheric dispersion modelling for the assessment of population exposure to contaminants emitted by municipal waste incinerators / Teggi, Sergio; Ghermandi, Grazia; Fabbi, Sara; Vinceti, Marco; Malagoli, Carlotta. - ELETTRONICO. - (2010). (Intervento presentato al convegno X Simpósio Ítalo-Brasileiro de Engenharia Sanitária e Ambiental Waste Management: Opportunities and Challenges tenutosi a Maceiò, AL, Brasil nel February 28 – March 03, 2010).