Beskydy 2017, 10, 87-98

Spatial and temporal trends in winter deposition of Pb, Be, Cu and Zn in selected mountain areas of Central Europe

Leona Bohdálková, Jakub Hruška

Global Change Research Institute, AS CR, Bělidla 986/4a, 603 00 Brno, Czech Republic

Atmospheric depositions of trace metals have been the focus of attention because of their potential toxicity to living organisms. In this paper, winter deposition rates of Pb, Be, Cu and Zn collected from 2009 to 2011 at 10 mountain-top localities in the border area of the Czech Republic were compared and summarized. Across the sites there were up to 7–8fold differences in Pb, Be and Zn deposition rates, and up to threefold differences in their Cu deposition rates. In all cases, rime contained higher amounts of Pb, Be, Cu and Zn compared to snow. More than 92 % of Pb, Cu and Zn occured in soluble (bioavailable) form, whereas only 34 % of Be was in soluble form. Recent trace metal concentrations in precipitation considerably decrease compared to those measured during the period of the highest atmospheric emissions in the 1980s. The industrial region in the northeast of the Czech Republic experienced moderate levels of Pb air pollution, while atmospheric Pb inputs in the rest of the country as well as overall inputs of Cu, Zn and Be were low, representing a low threat to human and ecosystem health. Between-site differences made it possible to classify sites into three categories according to their level of pollution load. A previously-mentioned north-south pollution gradient between the industrial north and rural south of the country was not observed. Sites in the northwest and in the south were among those with the lowest pollution loads. On the other hand, sites in the northeast were the most polluted due to their location near the industrial regions of southern Silesia (Poland) and Ostrava.


This work was supported by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of Czech Republic within the National Sustainability Program I (NPU I) grant number LO1415.


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