|Austrian Bio-Indicator Grid (www.bioindikatornetz.at)
The aim of the monitoring programme is to identify air
pollutants and nutrient imbalances through foliage analysis and
to show their temporal and spatial variation. In addition to
national efforts to identify transboundary pollution sources,
these data are used in forest-technical appraisals by the local
forest authorities in legal proceedings according to the mining,
waste and trade law to prove the impact of air pollutants.
|Biomonitoring in the proximity of local emission source
|Sampling in autumn
The Bioindicator-Grid (BIN) was established in 1983 and covers the entire Austrian territory. Spruce which is the main tree species in Austria was used as bioindicator. Other indicator species are pine and beech but only in the eastern part of Austria where spruce is not dominant. The BIN consists of a basic grid (16x16) and a more densely spaced grid. It is linked to the Bavarian Bio-Indicator Grid, which exists since 1983. The Bio-Indicator Grid of Slovenia has been adjusted to the Austrian basic grid.
Analyses are carried out to determine the needle content of sulphur, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, manganese, zinc, boron, copper, chromium, nickel and mercury. In the proximity of emission sources also the elements fluorine, chorine, lead and cadmium are determined. All needle samples are stored. Therefore it was possible to determine radioactive contamination by caesium 137 and strontium 90 from the atomic accident in Tschernobyl in Upper Austria and in the Waldviertel still years later.