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Foliage chemistry of Pinus banksiana in the Athabasca Oil Sands region, Alberta, Canada


Proemse, BC and Maynard, DG and Mayer, B, Foliage chemistry of Pinus banksiana in the Athabasca Oil Sands region, Alberta, Canada, Forests, 7, (12) Article 312. ISSN 1999-4907 (2016) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright 2016 the authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.3390/f7120312


Industrial emissions in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region (AOSR), Alberta, Canada, have caused concerns about the effect of oil sands operations on the surrounding terrestrial environments, including jack pine (Pinus banksiana Lamb.) stands. We collected jack pine needles from 19 sites in the AOSR (13128 km from main operations) for foliar chemical analyses to investigate the environmental impact on jack pine. Pine needles from three age classes, the current annual growth (CAG, 2011), one year and two year old pine needles, were collected. Samples were analyzed for total carbon (TC), nitrogen (TN), and sulfur (TS), inorganic S (SO4-S), base cations (Ca, Mg, Na), and other elements (B, Cu, Fe, Mn, P, Zn); CAG needles were also analyzed for their nitrogen and carbon isotopic compositions. Only TN, TS, Ca, B, Zn, and Fe contents showed weak but significant increases with proximity to the major oil sands operations. C and N isotopic compositions showed no trend with distance or TC and TN contents. Total S contents in CAG of pine foliage increased significantly with proximity to the main industrial operation while foliar inorganic S to organic S ratios (SO4-S/Sorg) ranged consistently between 0.13 and 0.32, indicating low to moderately high S loading. Hence, this study suggests some evidence of uptake of S emissions in close proximity to anthropogenic sources, although the reported values have not reached a level of environmental concern.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:foliage, jack pine, nitrogen, carbon, isotopes, Athabasca oil sands, pollution
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Geochemistry
Research Field:Isotope geochemistry
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Terrestrial systems and management
Objective Field:Assessment and management of terrestrial ecosystems
UTAS Author:Proemse, BC (Dr Bernadette Proemse)
ID Code:113166
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:5
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2016-12-14
Last Modified:2017-11-03
Downloads:138 View Download Statistics

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