Pine (Pinus Eldarica Medw.) needles as indicator for heavy metals pollution|
Kord, B.; Mataji, A. & Babaie, S.
In this study, the pine tree (Pinus Eldarica Medw.) needles were evaluated as the biomonitors of
heavy metal contamination in Tehran, Iran. The pine needle samples supplied from the old trees according to the main
wind direction (highest wind speed) were obtained from each parts of tree and then were homogeneously mixed. The
samples were taken from different locations with different degrees of metal pollution (urban, industrial, highway and
control sites). Then, the concentrations of lead, zinc, copper, nickel and chromium were measured using a flame
atomic absorption spectrophotometer. The result of this study showed that the highest and the lowest metal
concentrations were found in the heavy traffic sites and the control site, respectively. However, samples taken from
highway sites contained the high concentrations of nickel, copper and lead. Moreover, industrial areas were found to
have high contents of zinc and chromium. The variation in heavy metal concentrations between the studied locations
is due to changes in traffic density and anthropogenic activities. This research proved significant correlations between
the heavy metal concentrations in pine needle samples. Finally, it is concluded that Pinus Eldarica Medw. needles can
be applied to monitor polluted sites.
Air pollution; Atomic absorption spectrophotometer; Biomonitor; Heavy metals; Pine tree