Charcoal-based products are widely spread and appreciated as fuel for grilling food. However, during their use, they release high emissions that pose significant environmental issues and health risks. Charcoal grilling emissions contain a wide range of pollutants including CO, CO2, NOx, PM, PAHs, VOCs, and trace metals. The emission of these pollutants contributes to both indoor and outdoor air pollution. Factors such as charcoal type and qualitative characteristics, combustion temperature, and the presence of food influence the emission released. Compared to domestic emissions, charcoal grilling restaurants can be a major source of air pollutants affecting both indoor and outdoor air quality. The deterioration of air quality determines health repercussions. This study aimed to review the existing scientific literature on the environmental and health implications of charcoal-based products used in domestic and restaurant settings. The association between charcoal grilling emissions, respiratory illnesses, cardiovascular diseases, and the increased risk of developing carcinogenic conditions was evaluated. Workers in restaurant settings, exposed to cooking fumes for several hours, are particularly vulnerable to these health risks, but even short exposure can lead to health problems. Mitigation strategies involve different approaches, including the use of high-quality charcoal, implementing a certification system to ensure high-quality tested products, using grilling equipment designed to reduce emissions, ensuring proper ventilation, using abatement systems, and promoting responsible and sustainable grilling practices. Implementing these strategies guarantees more eco-friendly and safer grilling conditions while effectively reducing the adverse impacts of charcoal combustion on the environment and human health.

Charcoal-based products combustion: Emission profiles, health exposure, and mitigation strategies

Mencarelli A.
;
Greco R.;Balzan S.;Grigolato S.;Cavalli R.
2023

Abstract

Charcoal-based products are widely spread and appreciated as fuel for grilling food. However, during their use, they release high emissions that pose significant environmental issues and health risks. Charcoal grilling emissions contain a wide range of pollutants including CO, CO2, NOx, PM, PAHs, VOCs, and trace metals. The emission of these pollutants contributes to both indoor and outdoor air pollution. Factors such as charcoal type and qualitative characteristics, combustion temperature, and the presence of food influence the emission released. Compared to domestic emissions, charcoal grilling restaurants can be a major source of air pollutants affecting both indoor and outdoor air quality. The deterioration of air quality determines health repercussions. This study aimed to review the existing scientific literature on the environmental and health implications of charcoal-based products used in domestic and restaurant settings. The association between charcoal grilling emissions, respiratory illnesses, cardiovascular diseases, and the increased risk of developing carcinogenic conditions was evaluated. Workers in restaurant settings, exposed to cooking fumes for several hours, are particularly vulnerable to these health risks, but even short exposure can lead to health problems. Mitigation strategies involve different approaches, including the use of high-quality charcoal, implementing a certification system to ensure high-quality tested products, using grilling equipment designed to reduce emissions, ensuring proper ventilation, using abatement systems, and promoting responsible and sustainable grilling practices. Implementing these strategies guarantees more eco-friendly and safer grilling conditions while effectively reducing the adverse impacts of charcoal combustion on the environment and human health.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3496188
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