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Submitted: 23 December 2018 Modified: 23 December 2018
HERDIN Record #: CAR-CRHRDC-18122322023062

Reassesment: Usnea and Parmotrema Sp. as indicator of atmospheric Lead (Pb) pollution in selected areas of Baguio - Benguet.

Darryn Bartolome,
Mc Laybert Fernandez,
Zeny Faith Col-iteng,
Melanie de Luna,
Alyana Dawn Febrero,
Edwin Baquiran

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This study aims to reassess the previous study entitled Usnea and Parmotremasp. As Indicator of Atmospheric Lead (Pb) pollution in Selected Areas of Baguio and Benguet conducted on 2003. This evaluates changes in the concentration of Atmospheric lead from the previous study conducted way back 2003 and for the year 2014. Lichens are known as bioindicators. These are very efficient accumulators of Pb, through aerosols, particulate metal fallout, or acid rain.  Many lichen species have large geographical ranges, allowing study of pollution gradients over long distances. Lichen morphology does not vary with the seasons, and accumulation of pollutants can occur throughout the year. Lead contamination is very hazardous to the ecosystem and its constituents. These molecules are airborne in which lead may take up different exposure routes. Lead contaminates other substances around the environment which can cause as far as health problems such as alteration of brain development. Usnea species and Parmotrema species were used   to monitor the concentration of lead and collected around the selected areas of Baguio and Benguet. Parmotrema sp. are present in all study sites, however Usnea sp. are present only at Ambiong and Marcos Highway. The samples were subjected to drying method, then to acid digestion method to obtain free-carbon samples. Lead concentration was identified using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry. The result shows that there is an increase in the lead concentration at Harrison, Balatoc, Buyagan, and Ambiong.  However, there is a decrease in the lead concentration at Marcos Highway and Naguilian Road. Parmotrema species obtained from Balatoc showed the greatest amount of lead concentration absorbed. Parmotrema species obtained from Naguilian Road showed the lowest amount of lead concentration absorbed.

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