Determination of the emission rate and modeling of benzene dispersion due to surface evaporation from an oil pit

Keywords: Oil pit; Benzene; AERMOD dispersion model; Kharg island


Introduction: Air pollution is considered as one of the important challenges in oil fields and, determination of the emission levels and to identify the way of their dispersion is the first step to control and reduce the air pollutants more effective and efficient. The objective of this study was to determine the emission rate and analysis of VOCs due to surface evaporation from oil pit at one of the petroleum companies.


Materials and methods: This study was conducted in four seasons in 2017 on the Kharg island. The environmental benzene from the pit surface was measured then, dispersion method, analysis of the emissions of these pollutants was conducted using TANKS 4.0.9d and AERMOD dispersion model in an area of 10×10 km2 with a network spacing of 200.


Results: The maximum average concentration of airborne benzene at station A (0.53 ppm) and the station H (0.59 ppm) were obtained in the spring and, station M (0.72 ppm) and the station P (0.81 ppm) were obtained in the summer which are higher than the standard limit determined by DOE and EPA. The rate of emission from the oil pit was calculated as 0.0012 g / s. The motion of the pollutant plume is from the average hourly to yearly direction to the south and the results shows that the pollutant plume is moving in the direction of the wind,
and because of low height of source of pollutants, the pollutant plume has remained in the oil pit area and has not moved.


Conclusion: In general, considering the estimation of predictions, the
performance of the AERMOD dispersion model can be considered acceptable
in predicting the concentration of benzene in the target area.


M. Mohammadyan, F. Y. Golafshani, R. Yousefinejad, P. J. Boogaard, B. Heibati, Risk assessment of benzene among gas station refueling workers. FEB-FRESENIUS ENVIRONMENTAL BULLETIN, 3563 (2016).

P. W. Sammarco et al., Distribution and concentrations of petroleum hydrocarbons associated with the BP/Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, Gulf of Mexico. Marine pollution bulletin 73, 129-143 (2013).

W. Wei, S. Cheng, G. Li, G. Wang, H. Wang, Characteristics of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted from a petroleum refinery in Beijing, China. Atmospheric Environment 89, 358-366 (2014).

B. Heibati et al., BTEX exposure assessment and quantitative risk assessment among petroleum product distributors. Ecotoxicology and environmental safety 144, 445-449 (2017).

K. Merchant-Borna, E. G. Rodrigues, K. W. Smith, S. P. Proctor, M. D. Mcclean, Characterization of inhalation exposure to jet fuel among US Air Force personnel. Annals of occupational hygiene 56, 736-745 (2012).

S. C. Truong et al., Accidental benzene release risk assessment in an urban area using an atmospheric dispersion model. Atmospheric Environment 144, 146-159 (2016).

S. R. Hanna, R. Paine, D. Heinold, E. Kintigh, D. Baker, Uncertainties in air toxics calculated by the dispersion models AERMOD and ISCST3 in the Houston ship channel area. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology 46, 1372-1382 (2007).

M. M. Jackson, Organic liquids storage tanks volatile organic compounds (VOCS) emissions dispersion and risk assessment in developing countries: the case of Dar-Es-Salaam City, Tanzania. Environmental monitoring and assessment 116, 363-382 (2006).

T. Lashkova, V. Zabukas, P. Baltrenas, P. Vaitiekunas, Air pollution near a port oil terminal. Chemical and Petroleum Engineering 43, 358-361 (2007).

M. M. Karbasi Abdolreza, Estimation of hydrocarbon sink release from storage of oil products at Ajz Qeshm Terminal. . First National Conference on Environment, Energy and Biological Defense., (2013).

A. M. S. Mohammad Sadegh Sakhat Jo, Investigation of volatile organic matter release from crude oil tanks in Abadan Oil Refinery. The first virtual conference on nanoscience and nanotechnology, (2016).

B. Heibati et al., Biomonitoring-based exposure assessment of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene among workers at petroleum distribution facilities. Ecotoxicology and environmental safety 149, 19-25 (2018).

I. Šperlingová, L. Dabrowská, V. Stránský, J. Kučera, M. Tichý, Human urine certified reference material CZ 6010: creatinine and toluene metabolites (hippuric acid and o-cresol) and a benzene metabolite (phenol). Analytical and bioanalytical chemistry 387, 2419 (2007).

F. Atabi, F. Jafarigol, M. Momeni, M. Salimian, G. Bahmannia, Dispersion Modeling of CO with AERMOD in South Pars fourth Gas Refinery. Journal of Environmental Health Enginering 1, 281-292 (2014).

M. D. Gibson, S. Kundu, M. Satish, Dispersion model evaluation of PM2.5, NOx and SO2 from point and major line sources in Nova Scotia, Canada using AERMOD Gaussian plume air dispersion model. Atmospheric Pollution Research 4, 157-167 (2013).

A. S. Rood, Performance evaluation of AERMOD, CALPUFF, and legacy air dispersion models using the Winter Validation Tracer Study dataset. Atmospheric Environment 89, 707-720 (2014).

P. G. Diosey, M. E. Hess, L. Farrell, Modeling of odors and air toxics: a comparison of the ISCST3, Aermod, and Calpuff models. Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation 2002, 372-392 (2002).

A. R. B. Zahra Moradpour, Alireza Sultanian, Farshid Ghorbani Shahna, Amir Reza Negahban, Seasonal comparison of emissions of volatile organic compounds in the chemical industry based on oil during the years 2013 and 2014. Iran Occupational Health 11, 55-63 (2014).

A. Zalel, D. M. Broday, Revealing source signatures in ambient BTEX concentrations. Environmental pollution 156, 553-562 (2008).

A. D. Iman Momeni, Sahebeh Karimi, Nematollah Khorasani, SO2 emission modeling from Ramin Ahwaz power plant using AERMOD model. Human and Environment 3, 3-8 (2010).

M. S. Khosro Ashrafi, Mohammad Salimian, Mohammad Reza Momeni Determination of the emission and modeling of dispersion of volatile organic compounds due to surface evaporation from storage reservoirs located in Asalouyeh region. Journal of Environmental Studies 63, 47-60 (2011).

How to Cite
Karbasi A, Khoramnezhadian S, Asemi Zavareh SR, Pejman Sani G. Determination of the emission rate and modeling of benzene dispersion due to surface evaporation from an oil pit. japh. 3(3):155-166.
Original Research