Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 3, pp 2635–2648 | Cite as

The first example of multi-elemental analysis of water samples from urban monumental fountains—a case study from Zagreb (Croatia)

  • Vibor RojeEmail author
  • Jovan Dukić
  • Petar Šutalo
Research Article


Water fountains are usually present in the urban public places and often draw the attention of citizens and tourists. Their water is often, in various ways, used by adults and children, but water from fountains is not usually a subject of researchers’ interest. This paper describes the analytical procedure and the results of the multi-elemental characterisation of the waters from the selected public water fountains in the city of Zagreb, Republic of Croatia. Twenty-eight chemical elements (Al, As, B, Ba, Be, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Mo, Ni, P, Pb, S, Sb, Se, Sr, Ti, Tl, V, Zn and Ca, K, Mg and Na) were quantified by means of ICP-AES technique. In addition to the multi-elemental analysis, determination of pH values was performed too. Pearson’s correlation coefficients suggest that Al, Cu, Fe, Mn and Pb originate from the plumbing system and their leaching is strongly negatively correlated with the pH values of the tested samples. On the other hand, alkali and alkaline-earth metals as well as Mo, Ti, Zn and B, P and S are most probably of a natural origin in the water samples tested in this study. The results lead to the conclusions that (i) trace and major element content in squirt of a monumental water fountain is analogous to their content in water of the same origin and (ii) a pool of a fountain which is made of a high-quality stone, in the context of the herein performed testings, generally does not affect the quality of water which is contained in it.


Urban water Heavy metals Trace elements Major elements ICP pH 



The authors would like to thank Mrs. Biserka Petošić from the City Office for Agriculture and Forestry and the Mayor of Zagreb Mr. Milan Bandić.

Funding information

The functioning of the Laboratory for Ecology and Pedology at Faculty of Forestry, University of Zagreb, where this research has been conducted, was partially financially supported by the Zagreb Municipal Administration.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of ForestryUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia
  2. 2.Faculty of Food Technology and BiotechnologyUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia

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