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Seeking the possibility of the formation of benzoic acids from benzyl halides in natural soil, a model oxidation reaction of
the halides was carried out in the presence of water and soil in an open air
under UV light irradiation. Addition of TiO2 to soil raised the yield of the acid,
implying such a metal oxide plays a real catalytic role in this oxidation. By
these supplementary experiments, one of the possibilities for the formation of
benzoic acids in natural soil from benzyl chlorides was supported.
The present study examined the effects of air pollutants on people’s health, focusing on dust produced from automobile tires while cars drive on roads. The annual volume of dust resulting from tire wear, calculated based on the number of automobiles registered in Japan, was 1747245.4 m3. To put it simply, this translates to approximately 1.4 times the volume of the Tokyo Dome, a famous Japanese baseball stadium. Particulate substances are categorized into three groups depending on their size, and dust resulting from tire wear is classified into the coarse particle mode along with mold spores, pollen, and dust produced from brake pads. This study examined whether or not tire dust causes health damage similarly to pollen, a particulate substance in the same group. There were 38/cm2 dust particles resulting from tire wear on a busy road in Osaka Prefecture, and this number was larger than that of cedar pollen/cm2 (35), a cause of hay fever, identified in Hokkaido. The results suggest that tire dust may also adversely affect the health of people if any of its constituents has a toxicity or causes allergies.
Apple orchard surface soils in Japan are polluted with copper (Cu), lead (Pb), and arsenic (As) due to long-term use of metal-based pesticides. We investigated the effects of heavy metals accumulated in the surface soils in apple orchards on the microbial biomass and the microbial communities. Soil samples were taken from a chestnut orchard (unpolluted control) and five apple orchards with different degrees of heavy metal pollution. Total concentrations of Cu, Pb, and As in soil ranged from 29 to 931 mg/kg, 35 to 771 mg/kg, and 11 to 198 mg/kg, respectively. The amount of microbial biomass carbon expressed on a soil organic carbon basis decreased with increasing concentrations of heavy metals. Thus, the heavy metals that accumulated in apple orchard surface soils had adverse effects on the soil microbial biomass. The analysis of phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) composition indicated that the microbial community structure had changed because of the pesticide-derived heavy metals in soil. The relative abundance of gram-positive bacterial marker PLFAs increased and that of fungal marker PLFA decreased with increasing concentrations of heavy metals in soil. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoreses targeting the 16S ribosomal RNA gene of bacteria and the 18S ribosomal RNA gene of fungi also showed shifts in the composition of bacterial and fungal communities induced by soil pollution with heavy metals. However, the diversity of microbial communities was not significantly affected by the heavy metal pollution. This was attributable to the adaptation of the microbial communities in apple orchard surface soils to heavy metals derived from previously used pesticides.
Mean King’s problem is formulated as a retrodiction problem among noncommutative observables. In this paper, we reformulate Mean King’s problem using Shannon’s entropy as a first step of introducing quantum uncertainty relation with delayed classical information. As a result, we give informational and statistical meanings to the estimation on Mean King problem. As its application, we give an alternative proof of nonexistence of solutions of Mean King’s problem for qubit system without using entanglement.
This study aims to develop a method for evaluating the environmental risk of harmful chemical substances released from specific sources, using two atmospheric dispersion models and GIS (Geographic Information Systems). In the first stage of evaluation, ADMER was used to conduct a wide-area evaluation which covered the entire area of the evaluation target region. In the second stage, METI-LIS was used to conduct a detailed limited-area evaluation which targeted the vicinity of sources. In this study, incinerators were selected as sources and dioxins were selected as harmful chemical substances. The area selected for evaluation was the Tokyo Metropolis in Japan, and the evaluation method proposed in this study was used to evaluate environmental risk. Through the use of atmospheric dispersion models and GIS, the behavior of dioxins emitted into the atmosphere from incinerators was estimated. By superimposing atmospheric levels and population data, the amounts of dioxins that humans exposed to were found. Additionally, by superimposing deposition amounts and land use data, the amounts of dioxins accumulated in each land environment were found. Conducting these steps enabled the impact of dioxins on humans and the environment to be grasped quantitatively and visually, and the risk that dioxins emitted from incinerators pose to the environment to be evaluated.