Assessment of Potential of Some Native Trees Along Busy Roads to Reduce the Air Pollution
Native Trees Reduce the Air Pollution
Vehicular emissions that contain traces of a variety of heavy metals are known to cause serious contamination of roadside plants and pose a risk to human health. In current research, some local trees growing along Canal road, Lahore, Albizia procera (Roxb. Benth., Alstonia scholaris (L.) R.Br., Bougainvillea spectabilis Willd., Cassia fistula L., Ficus benghalensis L. and Ficus religiosa L. were studied (morphology, chlorophyll estimation) to explore their potential in the phyto-remediation of harmful environmental pollutants like cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb), through foliar route. Results showed degradation of chlorophyll content of all species except B. spectabilis, while reduction in cell sizes of only A. procera, C. fistula and benghalensis. Atomic absorption spectroscopy showed Pb accumulation in A. procera, A. scholaris and fistula and Cd accumulation in B. spectabilis only. Results suggest that these species can be used to reduce the level of Pb and Cd on busy road areas and therefore, improve quality of air.