Thimonier A, Schmitt M, Waldner P, Rihm B (2005) Atmospheric deposition on Swiss Long-term Forest Ecosystem Research (LWF) plots. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 104: 81-118. [10.1007/s10661-005-1605-9]


atmospheric deposition, critical load for nitrogen, long-term forest plot, modeling, risk assessment, throughfall


Atmospheric deposition of the major elements was estimated from throughfall and bulk deposition measurements on 13 plots of the Swiss Long-Term Forest Ecosystem Research (LWF) between 1995 and 2001. Independent estimates of the wet and dry deposition of nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) on these same plots were gained from combined simplified models. The highest deposition fluxes were measured at Novaggio (Southern Switzerland), exposed to heavy air pollution originating from the Po Plain, with throughfall fluxes averaging 29 kg ha-1 a-1 for N and 15 kg ha-1 a-1 for S. Low deposition fluxes were measured on the plots above 1800 m, with throughfall fluxes lower than 4.5 kg ha-1 a-1 for N and lower than 3 kg ha-1 a-1 for S. The wet deposition of N and S derived from bulk deposition was close to the modeled wet deposition, but the dry deposition derived from throughfall was significantly lower than the modeled dry deposition for both compounds. However, both the throughfall method and the model yielded total deposition estimates of N which exceeded the critical loads calculated on the basis of long-term mass balance considerations. These estimates were within or above the range of empirical critical loads except above 1800 m.

LWF Classification

Network: LWF, Sites: Alptal Beatenberg Bettlachstock Celerina Chironico Jussy Lausanne Nationalpark Neunkirch Novaggio Othmarsingen Schänis Vordemwald, Category: ISI,