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Atmospheric Deposition Study in the Area of Kardzhali Lead-Zinc Plant Based on Moss Analysis

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DOI: 10.4236/ajac.2014.514100    2,531 Downloads   2,972 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

For the first time the moss biomonitoring technique was used to assess the environmental situation in the area affected by a lead zinc plant as one of the most hazardous enterprises in Bulgaria. 77 Hypnum cupressiforme moss samples were collected in the Kardzhali municipality, in the summer and autumn of 2011. The concentrations of a total of 47 elements were determined by means of instrumental epithermal neutron activation analysis (ENAA), atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS) and inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES). Multivariate statistics was applied to characterize the sources of elements detected in the samples. Four groups of elements were found. In comparison to the data averaged for the area outside of the town, the atmospheric deposition loads for the elements of industrial origin in Kardzhali, where the smelter chimney is located, were found to be much higher. Median levels of the measured concentrations for the most toxic metals (Pb, Zn, Cd, As, Cu, In, Sb) were extremely high in this hot spot when compared to the median Bulgarian cross-country data from the 2010/2011 European moss survey. GIS technology was used to produce element distribution maps illustrating deposition patterns of element pollutants in the study area. The results obtained contribute to the Bulgarian environmental research used to study and control the manufacturing processes of a lead-zinc smelter in the town of Kardzhali.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Hristozova, G. , Marinova, S. , Strelkova, L. , Goryainova, Z. , Frontasyeva, M. and Stafilov, T. (2014) Atmospheric Deposition Study in the Area of Kardzhali Lead-Zinc Plant Based on Moss Analysis. American Journal of Analytical Chemistry, 5, 920-931. doi: 10.4236/ajac.2014.514100.

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