Skip to page content
USDA Forest Service

Research & Development Treesearch

Treesearch Home
About Treesearch
Contact Us
Research & Development
Forest Products Lab
International Institute of Tropical Forestry
Pacific Northwest
Pacific Southwest
Rocky Mountain
Southern Research Station
Help - We Participate  Government Made Easy

Global Forest Information Service

US Forest Service
P.O. Box 96090
Washington, D.C.

(202) 205-8333

You are here: Home / Search / Publication Information
Bookmark and Share

Publication Information

View PDF (1.3 MB bytes)

Title: Summary of air pollution impacts on forests in the Mexico City air basin

Author: Fenn, Mark E.; de Bauer, L.I.; Hernández-Tejeda, Tomás;

Date: 2002

Source: In: Urban Air Pollution and Forests, pp. 337-355

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication

Description: Oxidant air pollution symptoms were first reported in bioindicator plants in the Mexico City Air Basin (MCAB) in 1971 (de Bauer 1972). Classic injury symptoms on well-known bioindicator plants strongly supported the presumption that symptoms were caused by photochemical oxidants, of which ozone (O3) is the primary pollutant. Symptoms in indicator plants characteristic of injury caused by peroxyacetyl nitrate (PAN), ethylene, and sulfur dioxide (SO2) were also reported (de Bauer 1972; de Bauer and Hernández-Tejeda 1986). These discoveries were followed in 1976 by the observation of O3 injury symptoms in native pine species in forests in Ajusco (AJ), just south of Mexico City (de Bauer and Hernández-Tejeda 1986; Krupa and de Bauer 1976). Then in the 1980s, a dramatic and severe decline occurred in sacred fir (Abies religiosa) stands in the highly polluted area of the Desierto de los Leones (DL) National Park southwest of Mexico City (Alvarado-Rosales and Hernández-Tejeda 2002). Thousands of trees died, leaving dead zones called cemeteries. Air pollution was widely believed to be an important causal factor in the widespread mortality of sacred fir within the park (Ciesla and Macias-Samano 1987). Topographic conditions, including volcanic mountain ranges circumscribing much of the Basin, thermal atmospheric inversions, and prevailing winds which carry pollutants from the urban zone to forested areas to the south-southwest (SSW), create conditions favoring high pollution exposure for these forests (Bravo and Torres 2002; Jáuregui 2002).

Publication Notes:

  • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.



Fenn, Mark E.; de Bauer, L.I.; Hernández-Tejeda, Tomás 2002. Summary of air pollution impacts on forests in the Mexico City air basin. In: Urban Air Pollution and Forests, pp. 337-355


 [ Get Acrobat ]  Get the latest version of the Adobe Acrobat reader or Acrobat Reader for Windows with Search and Accessibility

USDA logo which links to the department's national site. Forest Service logo which links to the agency's national site.