Due to proximity and the characteristics of energy usage and resultant emissions of air pollutants, it has been speculated that biomass fuel burning activities in North Korea would affect the air quality in Seoul significantly. Based on the measured levels of levoglucosan and organic carbon (OC) in Seoul, the three-dimensional potential source contribution function (3D-PSCF) method was applied to estimate the degree of contribution of biomass fuel burning activities in North Korea to the air quality in Seoul. Relative importance of biomass fuel burning consumed in neighboring regions is estimated in the order of North Korea, Northeast China, North China, and East China. The 3D-PSCF method evaluates that biomass fuel burning activities, compared to other sources of OC, in Northeast China and North Korea highly contribute to the air quality in the Seoul Metropolitan Area (SMA). Relative importance as a source area of air pollutants between North Korea and Northeast China should be further validated.
- Biomass burning
- North Korea