Brazilian truckers’ strike and particulate matter (PM10) concentration: Temporal trend and time series models

Revista Brasileira de Ciências Ambientais(2022)

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High particulate matter (PM) emissions from vehicular traffic impact air quality in urban areas. In 2018, a truckers’ strike interrupted some of the services in Brazil, leading to a fuel outage in several cities that significantly reduced the flow of vehicles. This study evaluated air quality during the strike in two cities (Limeira and Campinas) in Southeastern Brazil. PM10 concentration was analyzed in the periods before (BTS — 05/01/2018 to 05/22/2018), during (DTS — 05/23/2018 to 05/30/2018), and after (ATS — 05/31/2018 to 06/30/2018) the strike using the Theil-Sen method and the Autoregressive Integrated Moving Average model with Exogenous Variables (ARIMAX). A reduction in the PM daily mean concentration in both cities occurred during the strike. Considering the daily peak time of vehicular flow (6:00 p.m.), the PM10 concentration was 20% higher in the BTS period compared to the DTS period for both cities. In comparison, the ATS period showed concentrations 17% (Limeira) and 7% (Campinas) higher when compared with the DTS period. The variations were statistically significant based on the time series models, and the influences of wind speed, rainfall on the sampling day and the day before sampling, and weekends were also evaluated. It was also possible to verify the contribution of the truckers’ strike to the PM10concentration in the two cities evaluated. In Limeira, truck traffic had a greater influence on the concentration of PM10, while in Campinas, the contribution of trucks was like that of light vehicles. Based on the variation of the PM10 concentration, the influence of changes in vehicle emission dynamics, one of the main sources of emission in the regions studied, was observed. The results indicate that restricting vehicular traffic had an immediate impact on improving air quality. Therefore, public investment in other types of transport and traffic control policies are suggested.
particulate matter,brazilian truckers,temporal trend,time series models,pm10
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