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VOC Production Estimates, 1960-2000

Introduction

Occurrence and concentration of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the environment are influenced by many factors. One potential factor is the production volume of VOCs, which may serve as surrogate for VOC use. To assess the influence of production volume on occurrence, production data for VOCs was researched and compiled in a table. Extensive use of a contaminant may increase the likelihood of detection of contamination in water samples, however, in general no clear relationship between VOC detections and production volume was evident (for gasoline hydrocarbons, see VOC Circular, sidebar 11, p.20).

Production information was available for 27 of the 55 monitored VOCs. Volumes for the years 1960 through 2000 or through the most recent year are provided in this table. In addition, the median production for individual VOCs was calculated using available data for years 1980 to 2000.

The data set is provided here in tab-delimited text and Excel formats. The table columns in these files are documented below.

Methodology

Available Information

Statistics for production volume of selected VOCs were obtained for the years 1960 through 2000 from three sources: (1) The Chemical Products Synopsis (CPS), a reporting service of the Mannsville Chemical Products Corporation; (2) U.S. gasoline data from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Information Administration (2003); (3) and data on gasoline composition from the Canadian Petroleum Products Institute (1994).

The CPS provided production volumes for 26 of the 55 monitored VOCs. In addition to U.S. production, exports and imports were included in the production volumes presented in the table with the following exceptions:

Production volumes that were estimated by the CPS have are noted by an "E" bebfore the value in the text file.

Determination of gasoline hydrocarbon production was difficult because these compounds are produced for both use in fuel and in chemical products and processes. The CPS provided production volume for aromatic hydrocarbons only for use in chemical processes. Consequently, U.S. production volumes of these hydrocarbons for use in finished motor gasoline were calculated from gasoline production data supplied by the the DOE (U.S. Dept. of Energy Information Administration, 2003) and from Canadian data on gasoline composition reported by the Canadian Petroleum Products Institute (1994). For total representation of gasoline hydrocarbon production volumes, the calculated values were added to the CPS values reported for gasoline hydrocarbons used in chemical processes. The Canadian Petroleum Products Institute provided data for all of the gasoline aromatic hydrocarbons with the exception of n-butylbenzene, isopropylbenzene, styrene, and 1,2,4-trimethylbenzene. In the table, these four compounds show production volumes only for uses other than gasoline. Therefore, a direct comparison of the production volumes for these four gasoline hydrocarbons to those of the other gasoline hydrocarbons is not possible.

Units, Significant Figures, and Rounding

Production volumes were provided in various units. For consistency, units were converted to millions of gallons per year. These conversions were performed in Microsoft Excel.

The number of significant figures for production volumes was limited by the number of significant figures in the data sources. Three significant figures were retained for reporting production values for VOCs except for six compounds for which only two significant figures were retained. Rounding was performed according to USGS rules as laid out in Hansen (1991).

Column labels

The following is a list of columns included in the tab-delimited text file:
COMPOUND     VOC Compound name (as used in USGS Circular 1292)
VOCGROUP     VOC Group name (as used in USGS Circular 1292)
USE          VOC Use category
P1960        Total use in the year 1960, millions of gallons per year
P1965        Total use in the year 1965, millions of gallons per year
P1970        Total use in the year 1970, millions of gallons per year
P1975        Total use in the year 1975, millions of gallons per year
P1979        Total use in the year 1979, millions of gallons per year
P1980        Total use in the year 1980, millions of gallons per year
P1981        Total use in the year 1981, millions of gallons per year
P1982        Total use in the year 1982, millions of gallons per year
P1983        Total use in the year 1983, millions of gallons per year
P1984        Total use in the year 1984, millions of gallons per year
P1985        Total use in the year 1985, millions of gallons per year
P1986        Total use in the year 1986, millions of gallons per year
P1987        Total use in the year 1987, millions of gallons per year
P1988        Total use in the year 1988, millions of gallons per year
P1989        Total use in the year 1989, millions of gallons per year
P1990        Total use in the year 1990, millions of gallons per year
P1991        Total use in the year 1991, millions of gallons per year
P1992        Total use in the year 1992, millions of gallons per year
P1993        Total use in the year 1993, millions of gallons per year
P1994        Total use in the year 1994, millions of gallons per year
P1995        Total use in the year 1995, millions of gallons per year
P1996        Total use in the year 1996, millions of gallons per year
P1997        Total use in the year 1997, millions of gallons per year
P1998        Total use in the year 1998, millions of gallons per year
P1999        Total use in the year 1999, millions of gallons per year
P2000        Total use in the year 2000, millions of gallons per year
MEDIAN       Median VOC production, 1980-2000, in millions of gallons per year
Note: null values in the table are recorded with the text "--"

Bibliography

Canadian Petroleum Products Institute, 1994, Composition of Canadian summer and winter gasolines-1993: Canadian Petroleum Products Institute Report 94-5, Alberta, Canada.

Hansen, W.R., 1991, Suggestions to authors of the reports of the United States Geological Survey-Seventh edition: Washington DC, U.S. Government Printing Office, p. 119.

Mannsville Chemical Products Corporation, 1983-2002, Chemical Products Synopsis: Mannsville Chemical Products, Adams, New York, variously paged.

U.S. Department of Energy Information Administration: 2003, U.S. Gasoline Data: Accessed March 20, 2003, at http://www.eia.doe.gov/oil_gas/petroleum/info_glance/gasoline.html.

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