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Glossary 

This glossary provides definitions of common terms used in the context of air pollution.

You can navigate quickly to a term using the alphabetic links below; clicking on the terms will show their definition.



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  • PAHs
    Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) belong to a large group of organic compounds, several of which have been shown to be carcinogenic. The Expert Panel on Air Quality Standards (EPAQS) (now merged into the Department of Health's Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollutants (COMEAP)) recommended a standard for PAHs of 0.25 ng/m3 using benzo[a]pyrene (B(a)P) as a marker compound.
  • Particulate matter (PM)
  • Parts per billion, ppb
  • Parts per million, ppm
  • Percentile
  • POPs

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Page last modified: 14 February 2011