Environmental Monitoring and Assessment

, Volume 138, Issue 1, pp 107–118

Atmospheric deposition of trace element pollutants in Macedonia studied by the moss biomonitoring technique


  • L. Barandovski
    • Sts. Cyril and Methodius University, Faculty of Sciences
  • M. Cekova
    • Sts. Cyril and Methodius University, Faculty of Sciences
    • Joint Institute for Nuclear Research
  • S. S. Pavlov
    • Joint Institute for Nuclear Research
  • T. Stafilov
    • Sts. Cyril and Methodius University, Faculty of Sciences
  • E. Steinnes
    • Norwegian University of Science and Technology
  • V. Urumov
    • Sts. Cyril and Methodius University, Faculty of Sciences

DOI: 10.1007/s10661-007-9747-6

Cite this article as:
Barandovski, L., Cekova, M., Frontasyeva, M.V. et al. Environ Monit Assess (2008) 138: 107. doi:10.1007/s10661-007-9747-6


For the first time the atmospheric deposition of trace metals was studied over the entire territory of the Republic of Macedonia. Samples of the terrestrial mosses Hypnum cupressiforme, Camptothecium lutescens, and Homalothecium sericeum were collected in September–October 2002 at 73 sites evenly distributed over the country, and a total of 43 elements were determined by instrumental neutron activation analysis and atomic absorption spectrometry. Principal component factor analysis was used to identify the most polluted areas and characterize different pollution sources. The most important sources of trace metal deposition are ferrous and non-ferrous smelters, oil refineries, fertilizer production plants, and central heating stations. Four areas appear to be particularly exposed to metal pollution: Veles, Skopje, Tetovo, and Kavadarci-Negotino, whereas the predominantly agricultural regions in the south, southwest, and southeast show levels closer to European median values for most elements of mainly pollution origin.


Atmospheric depositionTrace elementsMetalsAir pollutionFactor analysisMacedoniaNeutron activation analysis

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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007