Biomonitoring of atmospheric particulate pollution via chemical composition and magnetic properties of roadside tree leaves
Particulate matter (PM) is a main atmospheric pollution which threats human health and well-being. In this research, we chemically and magnetically analysed roadside tree leaves, collected from three tree species in two main roads (from two different cities) and a reference area, for 28 elements and the saturation isothermal remanent magnetisation. Comparison of unwashed and washed leaves revealed that deposited particles on the leaf surface contain various elements including Al, Ca, Fe, Mg, Mn, Na, Si, Ti, Ba, Co, Cr, Cu, Ni, Rb, V, Zn and Zr. Moreover, there was no significant difference between washed/unwashed leaves in Cl, K, P, S, As, Cd, Cs, Pb, Sn and Sr concentrations, which indicates tree leaves may not be a suitable biomonitor for these elements. Our results showed that site and tree species are important factors which affect atmospheric elements deposition. Among the three considered tree species, Chamaecyparis lawsoniana showed the highest potential for atmospheric particle accumulation. The PCA results revealed that Al, Fe, Ti, Co, Cr, Cu, Ni, Rb, Si, V, Zn and Zr indicated emissions from road traffic activities and soil dust; Ca, Mg and Na from sea salts and Mn and Sb from industrial activity. The biplot results showed that the site effect was much stronger than the species effect for all elements and saturation isothermal remanent magnetisation (SIRM) values. Moreover, elements from traffic, industrial activity and soil dust are significantly correlated with leaf SIRM indicating that leaf SIRM can be a suitable bioindicator of exposure to traffic-derived particles and soil dust, and not from sea salts. It is concluded that chemical composition and SIRM of urban tree leaves can serve as a good indicator of atmospheric PM pollution in Iran and anywhere else where the studied trees grow.
Source (journal)
Environmental Science and Pollution Research. - Landsberg
Landsberg : 2018
0944-1344 [print]
1614-7499 [online]
25 :26 (2018) , p. 25994-26004
Pubmed ID
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (open access)
Full text (publisher's version - intranet only)
Research group
Publication type
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Creation 08.10.2018
Last edited 15.11.2022
To cite this reference