Tag Archives: China

20th Century Temperatures Not Unprecedented, China

Quansheng Ge, Haolong Liu, Xiang Ma, Jingyun Zheng, Zhixin Hao. Characteristics of temperature change in China over the last 2000 years and spatial patterns of dryness/wetness during cold and warm periods. Advances in Atmospheric Sciences. August 2017, Volume 34, Issue 8, pp 941–951

This paper presents new high-resolution proxies and paleoclimatic reconstructions for studying climate changes in China for the past 2000 years. Multi-proxy synthesized reconstructions show that temperature variation in China has exhibited significant 50–70-yr, 100–120-yr, and 200–250-yr cycles. Results also show that the amplitudes of decadal and centennial temperature variation were 1.3°C and 0.7°C, respectively, with the latter significantly correlated with long-term changes in solar radiation, especially cold periods, which correspond approximately to sunspot minima. The most rapid warming in China occurred over AD 1870–2000, at a rate of 0.56° ± 0.42°C (100 yr)−1; however, temperatures recorded in the 20th century may not be unprecedented for the last 2000 years, as data show records for the periods AD 981–1100 and AD 1201–70 are comparable to the present. The ensemble means of dryness/wetness spatial patterns in eastern China across all centennial warm periods illustrate a tripole pattern: dry south of 25°N, wet from 25°–30°N, and dry to the north of 30°N. However, for all centennial cold periods, this spatial pattern also exhibits a meridional distribution. The increase in precipitation over the monsoonal regions of China associated with the 20th century warming can primarily be attributed to a mega El Ni˜no–Southern Oscillation and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation. In addition, a significant association between increasing numbers of locusts and dry/cold conditions is found in eastern China. Plague intensity also generally increases in concert with wetness in northern China, while more precipitation is likely to have a negative effect in southern China.

TOX in Urine as an Exposure Surrogate, China

Y Kimura S, Zheng W, N Hipp T, M Allen J, D Richardson S. Total organic halogen (TOX) in human urine: A halogen-specific method for human exposure studies. Journal of environmental sciences (China). 2017 Aug;58:285-295. doi: 10.1016/j.jes.2017.04.008.

Disinfection by-products (DBPs) are a complex mixture of compounds unintentionally formed as a result of disinfection processes used to treat drinking water. Effects of long-term exposure to DBPs are mostly unknown and were the subject of recent epidemiological studies. However, most bioanalytical methods focus on a select few DBPs. In this study, a new comprehensive bioanalytical method has been developed that can quantify mixtures of organic halogenated compounds, including DBPs, in human urine as total organic chlorine (TOCl), total organic bromine (TOBr), and total organic iodine (TOI). The optimized method consists of urine dilution, adsorption to activated carbon, pyrolysis of activated carbon, absorption of gases in an aqueous solution, and halide analysis with ion chromatography and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Spike recoveries for TOCl, TOBr, and TOI measurements ranged between 78% and 99%. Average TOCl, TOBr, and TOI concentrations in five urine samples from volunteers who consumed tap water were 1850, 82, and 21.0μg/L as X, respectively. Volunteers who consumed spring water (control) had TOCl, TOBr, and TOI average concentrations in urine of 1090, 88, and 10.3μg/L as X, respectively. TOCl and TOI in the urine samples from tap water consumers were higher than the control. However, TOBr was slightly lower in tap water urine samples compared to mineral water urine samples, indicating other sources of environmental exposure other than drinking water. A larger sample population that consumes tap water from different cities and mineral water is needed to determine TOCl, TOBr, and TOI exposure from drinking water.

Risk Assessment of Chinese Resident’s Exposure to Fluoride

Zhang LE, Huang D, Yang J, Wei X, Qin J, Ou S, Zhang Z, Zou Y. Probabilistic risk assessment of Chinese residents’ exposure to fluoride in improved drinking water in endemic fluorosis areas. Environmental pollution 2017 Mar;222:118-125. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2016.12.074.

Studies have yet to evaluate the effects of water improvement on fluoride concentrations in drinking water and the corresponding health risks to Chinese residents in endemic fluorosis areas (EFAs) at a national level. This paper summarized available data in the published literature (2008-2016) on water fluoride from the EFAs in China before and after water quality was improved. Based on these obtained data, health risk assessment of Chinese residents’ exposure to fluoride in improved drinking water was performed by means of a probabilistic approach. The uncertainties in the risk estimates were quantified using Monte Carlo simulation and sensitivity analysis. Our results showed that in general, the average fluoride levels (0.10-2.24 mg/L) in the improved drinking water in the EFAs of China were lower than the pre-intervention levels (0.30-15.24 mg/L). The highest fluoride levels were detected in North and Southwest China. The mean non-carcinogenic risks associated with consumption of the improved drinking water for Chinese residents were mostly accepted (hazard quotient < 1), but the non-carcinogenic risk of children in most of the EFAs at the 95th percentile exceeded the safe level of 1, indicating the potential non-cancer-causing health effects on this fluoride-exposed population. Sensitivity analyses indicated that fluoride concentration in drinking water, ingestion rate of water, and the exposure time in the shower were the most relevant variables in the model, therefore, efforts should focus mainly on the definition of their probability distributions for a more accurate risk assessment.

Antibiotic-Resistant E. coli in Drinking Water, Hangzhou City, China

Chen Z, Yu D, He S, Ye H, Zhang L, Wen Y, Zhang W, Shu L, Chen S. Prevalence of Antibiotic-Resistant Escherichia coli in Drinking Water Sources in Hangzhou City. Front Microbiol. 2017 Jun 16;8:1133. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2017.01133. eCollection 2017.

This study investigated the distribution of antibiotic resistant Escherichia coli (E. coli) and examined the possible relationship between water quality parameters and antibiotic resistance from two different drinking water sources (the Qiantang River and the Dongtiao Stream) in Hangzhou city of China. E. coli isolates were tested for their susceptibility to 18 antibiotics. Most of the isolates were resistant to tetracycline (TE), followed by ampicillin (AM), piperacillin (PIP), trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole (SXT), and chloramphenicol (C). The antibiotic resistance rate of E. coli isolates from two water sources was similar; For E. coli isolates from the Qiantang River, their antibiotic resistance rates decreased from up- to downstream. Seasonally, the dry and wet season had little impact on antibiotic resistance. Spearman’s rank correlation revealed significant correlation between resistance to TE and phenicols or ciprofloxacin (CIP), as well as quinolones (ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin) and cephalosporins or gentamicin (GM). Pearson’s chi-square tests found certain water parameters such as nutrient concentration were strongly associated with resistance to some of the antibiotics. In addition, tet genes were detected from all 82 TE-resistant E. coli isolates, and most of the isolates (81.87%) contained multiple tet genes, which displayed 14 different combinations. Collectively, this study provided baseline data on antibiotic resistance of drinking water sources in Hangzhou city, which indicates drinking water sources could be the reservoir of antibiotic resistance, potentially presenting a public health risk.

Toxic Effects of Fluoride on Male Mouse Reproductive System

Cao J, Chen Y, Chen J, Yan H, Li M, Wang J. Fluoride exposure changed the structure and the expressions of Y chromosome related genes in testes of mice. Chemosphere. 2016 Oct;161:292-9. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2016.06.106.

It is known that during spermatogenesis, pluripotent germ cells differentiate to become efficient delivery vehicles to the oocyte of paternal DNA, and the process is easily damaged by external poison. In this study, the effects of fluoride on the body weight, fluoride content in femur, testosterone levels in serum and testis, sperm quality, and the expressions of Y chromosome microdeletion genes and protein levels were examined in testes of Kunming male mice treated with different concentrations of 0, 25, 50, 100 mg/L of NaF in drinking water for 11 weeks, respectively. The results showed that compared with the control group, fluoride contents in three treatment groups were significantly increased and the structure of testes was seriously injured. The testosterone contents and the sperm count were decreased. Sperm malformation ratio was distinctly elevated. The expressions of Sly and HSF2 mRNA were markedly reduced in 100 mg/L NaF group and Ssty2 mRNA expression was dramatically decreased in 50 and 100 mg/L NaF groups. Meanwhile, the protein levels of Ssty2 and Sly were significantly reduced in 50 and 100 mg/L NaF groups and HSF2 protein levels were significantly decreased in 100 mg/L NaF group. These studies indicated that fluoride had toxic effects on male reproductive system by reducing the testosterone and sperm count, and increasing the sperm malformation ratio, supported by the damage of testicular structure, as a consequence of depressed HSF2 level, which resulted in the down-regulation of Ssty2 and Sly mRNA and protein.

South China Sea coral confirm Little Ice Age, Medieval Warming

Wenfeng Deng, Xi Liu, Xuefei Chen, Gangjian Wei, Ti Zeng, Luhua Xie, Jian-xin Zhao. A comparison of the climates of the Medieval Climate Anomaly, Little Ice Age, and Current Warm Period reconstructed using coral records from the northern South China Sea. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 122(1):264-275 DOI:10.1002/2016jC012458

For the global oceans, the characteristics of high-resolution climate changes during the last millennium remain uncertain because of the limited availability of proxy data. This study reconstructs climate conditions using annually resolved coral records from the South China Sea (SCS) to provide new insights into climate change over the last millennium. The results indicate that the climate of the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA, AD 900–1300) was similar to that of the Current Warm Period (CWP, AD 1850-present), which contradicts previous studies. The similar warmth levels for the MCA and CWP have also been recorded in the Makassar Strait of Indonesia, which suggests that the MCA was not warmer than the CWP in the western Pacific and that this may not have been a globally uniform change. Hydrological conditions were drier/saltier during the MCA and similar to those of the CWP. The drier/saltier MCA and CWP in the western Pacific may be associated with the reduced precipitation caused by variations in the Pacific Walker Circulation. As for the Little Ice Age (LIA, AD 1550–1850), the results from this study, together with previous data from the Makassar Strait, indicate a cold and wet period compared with the CWP and the MCA in the western Pacific. The cold LIA period agrees with the timing of the Maunder sunspot minimum and is therefore associated with low solar activity. The fresher/wetter LIA in the western Pacific may have been caused by the synchronized retreat of both the East Asian Summer Monsoon and the Australian Monsoon.

Geonotoxicity of Drinking Water Treated with Disinfectants; China

Nie X, Liu W, Zhang L, Liu Q. Genotoxicity of drinking water treated with different disinfectants and effects of disinfection conditions detected by umu-test. Journal of environmental sciences (China). 2017 Jun;56:36-44. doi: 10.1016/j.jes.2016.07.016.

The genotoxicity of drinking water treated with 6 disinfection methods and the effects of disinfection conditions were investigated using the umu-test. The pretreatment procedure of samples for the umu-test was optimized for drinking water analysis. The results of the umu-test were in good correlation with those of the Ames-test. The genotoxicity and production of haloacetic acids (HAAs) were the highest for chlorinated samples. UV+chloramination is the safest disinfection method from the aspects of genotoxicity, HAA production and inactivation effects. For chloramination, the effects of the mass ratio of Cl2 to N of chloramine on genotoxicity were also studied. The changes of genotoxicity were different from those of HAA production, which implied that HAA production cannot represent the genotoxic potential of water. The genotoxicity per chlorine decay of chlorination and chloramination had similar trends, indicating that the reaction of organic matters and chlorine made a great contribution to the genotoxicity. The results of this study are of engineering significance for optimizing the operation of waterworks.