Abstract

Phthalates have been frequently used in various clothing as plasticizers. However, little information is available on phthalates in the environmental matrices in clothing processing sites. This study investigated the phthalates in the soil and road dust in a large processing trade center of children's clothing in China based on the characteristics of human activities and regional environment. The total concentrations of 13 phthalates were in the range of 219–15,952 and 1104–18,628 ng/g, respectively. We did not find extremely high concentrations of phthalates, and our reported concentrations were moderate in comparison with those reported in other areas. Bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate was the dominant congener, representing medians of 64.3% and 77.4% of the total phthalate concentrations in the soils and road dust, respectively. Source assessment suggested that the phthalates were likely mainly from the processing process of clothing, and some may have been originated from the use of family products. The health risk assessment results showed that the risks from phthalates in the soils and road dust were generally low. However, more research is required to investigate the phthalate contaminations and the associated risks due to the lack of relevant information in textile industrial areas.

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