Poly-Aromatic Hydrocarbons
PAH is an acronym for Poly-Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH), 
a chemical compound that contains more than one fused benzene
ring. They are commonly found in petroleum fuels, coal products,
and tar; e.g. Naphthalene, Anthracene, Phenanthrene
They have high log Kow values in the range of 4 - 7, and they 
are not very mobile in soils and groundwater. Even at very
old sites, PAHs are often found close to the surface. Most
of them are biodegraded very slowly, and some of them, especially
with more than 4 rings, are persistent even under aerobic
conditions. A number of these compounds, including benz[a]pyrene
and 7,12-dimethyldibenz[a]anthracene are well-known
potent human carcinogens. PAHs are therefore always high
on the priority list.
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