Skip to main content


There is not much question that plants are sensitive to air pollution, nor is there doubt that air pollution is affecting forests and agriculture worldwide. In this book, specific criteria and evaluated approaches to diagnose the effects of air pollution on trees and forests are examined.

Suggested Citation

National Research Council. 1989. Biologic Markers of Air-Pollution Stress and Damage in Forests. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

Import this citation to:

Publication Info

380 pages |  Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-309-07833-7
Chapters skim
Front Matter i-xiv
Executive Summary 1-4
Introduction 5-5
Using Markers in Combination 6-6
The Workshop 7-10
Establishing Cause-and-Effect Relationships 11-14
Using Markers in Surveys and Experimental Studies 15-16
A Strategy for Using Biologic Markers of Stress in Forests 17-21
Conclusions and Recommendations 22-24
References 25-26
Part II: The Workshop Papers: Introductory Session 27-28
Air-Pollutant Distribution and Trends 29-46
Elevational Gradients/Local Chemistry 47-56
Large-Scale Monitoring 57-62
Use of Biomarkers to Monitor Forest Damage in Europe 63-72
Bioindicators in Air Pollution Research - Applications and Constraints 73-80
New and Emerging Technologies 81-88
Forest Applications of Biologic Markers: Regional Session 89-90
Decline of Red Spruce in the Northern Appalachians: Determining if Air Pollution is an Important Factor 91-104
Forest Applications of Biomarkers in Southeastern Forests 105-110
Biomarkers for Defining Air Pollution Effecs in Western Coniferous 111-118
Symptoms as Bioindicators of Decline in European Forests 119-124
Tree-Stand/Ecosystem Session 125-126
Resource Allocation in Trees and Ecosystems 127-132
Markers of Air Pollution in Forests: Nutrient Cycling 133-142
Human Perturbation of C, N, and S Biogeochemical Cycles: Historical Studies with Stable Isotopes 143-156
Tree-Ring Analysis as an Aid to Evaluating the Effects of Air Pollution on Tree Growth 157-168
Evaluation of Root-Growth and Functioning of Trees Exposed to Air Pollutants 169-182
The Use of Remote Sensing for the Study of Air Pollution Effects in Forrests 183-194
Indigenous and Cultivated Plants as Bioindicators 195-204
Experiments and Observations on Epiphytic Lichens as Early Warning Sentinels of Forest Decline 205-216
Fungal and Bacteria Symbioses as Potential Biological Markers of Effects of Atmospheric Deposition on Forest Health 217-232
Microbial and Rhizosphere Markers of Air Pollution Induced Stress 233-244
Biochemical/Cell-Tissue Session 245-246
Foliar Nitrate Reductase: a Marker for Assimilation of Atmospheric Nitrogen Oxides 247-250
Free-Radical Mediated Processes as Markers of Air Pollution Stress in Trees 251-260
Biochemical Indicators of Air Pollution Effects in Trees: Unambiguous Signals Based on Secondary Metabolites and Nitrogen in Fast-Growing Species 261-274
Metals in Roots, Stem, and Foliage of Forest Trees 275-280
The Potential of Trees to Record Aluminum Mobilization and Changes in Alkaline Earth Availability 281-292
Carbon Allocation Processes as Indicators of Pollutant Impacts on Forests Trees 293-302
Photosynthesis and Transpiration Measurements as Biomarkers of Air Pollution Effects on Forests 303-316
Nutrient-Use Efficiency as an Indicator of Stress Effects on Forest Trees 317-332
Leaf Cuticles as Potential Markers of Air Pollution 333-340
Air Pollutant-Low Temperature Interactions in Trees 341-346
Alteration of Chlorophyll in Plants Upon Air Pollutant Exposure 347-356
Co-occurring Stress: Drought 357-363

What is skim?

The Chapter Skim search tool presents what we've algorithmically identified as the most significant single chunk of text within every page in the chapter. You may select key terms to highlight them within pages of each chapter.

Copyright Information

The National Academies Press (NAP) has partnered with Copyright Clearance Center's Marketplace service to offer you a variety of options for reusing NAP content. Through Marketplace, you may request permission to reprint NAP content in another publication, course pack, secure website, or other media. Marketplace allows you to instantly obtain permission, pay related fees, and print a license directly from the NAP website. The complete terms and conditions of your reuse license can be found in the license agreement that will be made available to you during the online order process. To request permission through Marketplace you are required to create an account by filling out a simple online form. The following list describes license reuses offered by the NAP through Marketplace:

  • Republish text, tables, figures, or images in print
  • Post on a secure Intranet/Extranet website
  • Use in a PowerPoint Presentation
  • Distribute via CD-ROM
  • Photocopy

Click here to obtain permission for the above reuses. If you have questions or comments concerning the Marketplace service, please contact:

Marketplace Support
International +1.978.646.2600
US Toll Free +1.855.239.3415

To request permission to distribute a PDF, please contact our Customer Service Department at

loading iconLoading stats for Biologic Markers of Air-Pollution Stress and Damage in Forests...