Stone industry is a major environmental pollutant if environmental protection measures were not in place. Palestine has more than 300 quarries as stone mines, and 1000 stone cutting facilities, with a total annual yield of 100 million tons of raw stone and 25 million square meters of high-quality façade stone. Also, stone industry contributes by 4.5% to the national GNP, and ranked top among all exported materials. Unfortunately, and due to the current political situation in the country, law enforcement is not effective. So, these industries cause significant pollution on the surrounding environment including air, water, soil, plant and human health.
PM10 was measured on a monthly basis during 2015-2019, by using Low Volume Sampler LVS3, Sven Leckel, Germany, and other PM components where monitored by handheld TSI DustTrack DRX 8354. PM10 monitoring results during 2014-2019 in the north Eastern Jerusalem and around quarries were between 15.5 – 177.7 μg/m 3 (24-hour average). The first monitoring trials result in 2014 inside the quarries were as high as 397.1 μg/m 3 . Air Quality Index range was 14.3 -112.2, calculated based on EPA method.
Health implications resulted from exposure to PM were contributed to respirometry measurements, being monitored in 2019 by using CONTEC SP10 respirometer. Samples of quarries’ workers, truck drivers, and several residents in the surrounding were tested for forced vital capacity (FVC), forced expiratory volume-one second (FEV1), and FEV1/FVC ratio. The results show that 50% of sample have severe to moderate lung abnormality (36-80% of the reference values for the same gender, age, cigarette and drug consumption), being all quarries’ workers and drivers are in the most severe situation.