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A Multi-Analytical Approach to the Use of Conifer Needles as Passive Samplers of Particulate Matter and Organic Pollutants

Category: Articles

Volume: 14 | Issue: 3 | Pages: 677-685
DOI: 10.4209/aaqr.2013.10.0308

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Giulia Bertolotti 1, Elena C. Rada2, Marco Ragazzi2, Alessandro Chisté2, Stefano Gialanella1

  • 1 Dipartimento di Ingegneria Industriale, Università degli Studi di Trento, Via Mesiano 77, 38123 Trento, Italy
  • 2 Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile, Ambientale e Meccanica, Università degli Studi di Trento, Via Mesiano 77, 38123 Trento, Italy


The present work regards the analysis of airborne pollutants emitted by an electric arc furnace steel making plant at a test site in Northern Italy and collected by conifer needles. The spatial and temporal trends of accumulation of Mn, Zn, Fe, Cr, Pb, polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/dibenzofurans and polychlorinated biphenyls dioxin revealed that the contribution from the steel making plant has never been particularly high, whereas traffic emerged as a significant pollution source. The benefits of combining bulk and single particle analysis in air pollution studies from different sources are also discussed.


Spruce needles Air pollution Steelmaking plant pollution Heavy metals

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