Article

Biomonitoring of air pollution near Parichha Thermal Power Plant, Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh

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Abstract

Lichens are excellent bioindicators. As bioindicators, the presence/absence of sensitive species is pointer to use for distribution patterns of air pollutant deposition. The accumulation of various air pollutants including heavy metals by lichens is well documented (Ferry et a/., 1973). Pollutants, like SO 2 and NO 2 affect the growth of lichens and its colony. Sometimes the lichens which are sensitive can die or shift their colony. This shows the presence of air pollutants in the air. The resistant lichens accumulate the heavy metals and air pollutants in their thallii. In Indian context, a survey of the lichen of 25 Kolkata streets demonstrated that the species and population of lichens could be an indicator for determining the air quality (Das et al., 1986). Upreti and Pandey (1990, 2000) studied the concentration of heavy metals in lichen growing on different ecological habitat in Schirmacher Oasis. The sampling of lichen and air pollution monitoring were carried out during the month of April to July 2007 in and around the Pariccha Thermal Power Plant, Pariccha Jhansi. We have assumed the Pariccha Thermal Power Plant as central part and collected samples from all the 4 directions. Samples were also taken from a control location at distance of about 24 km from the Pariccha Thermal Power Plant. Concentration of SO 2 and NO 2 in all the monitored locations in all the seasons were found to be well within the prescribed standard. The concentrations of the various pollutants at the control location were found to be less than that at other locations. Heavy-metal accumulation in a few prominent lichens of some localities is also analysed. Chromium was found to be accumulated more in all the species collected.

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