< Selenium - Se Arsenic - As >

Associated topic: Heavy metals

Emissions monitoring period: depuis 1990

Source des données: CITEPA / SECTEN format - April 2017


Sources of the pollutant

Zinc (Zn) is released by burning coal and heavy fuel oil, but also by some industrial processes in ferrous and non-ferrous metals production and by waste incineration.


Effect of the pollutant

The acute toxic effects of Zn in its metallic form are slight when it is inhaled or taken orally. However, some zinc compounds produce harmful effects in humans. The toxicity of chronic long-term exposure through inhalation is not well known.

Heavy metals can be toxic for the biosphere. Most being under particulate shape, they accumulate in the water, the grounds, the food and the air.


Classification of sub-sectors* with the highest emission levels in 2015

Classification Sub-sectors Share of sub-sector in total national emissions in mainland France
1 Diesel-fuelled passenger cars 29%
2 Residential sector 16%
3 Ferrous metals production 11%
4 Diesel-fuelled light-duty vehicules 11%
5 Gasoline-fuelled passenger cars 9.0%
6 Diesel-fuelled heavy-duty vehicles (including buses and coaches) 8.8%

*: one sector out of six (energy transformation, manufacturing industry, residential/tertiary, agriculture/forestry, road transport and other transport) is broken down into sub-sectors.


Emissions and trends

Minimum observed: 468 t in 2014
Maximum observed: 2 218 t in 1990
Emissions in 2015: 476 t
Trends 2015/1990: -78.6%
Trends 2015/maximum: -78.6%
Trends 2015/minimum: +1.7%

Measurement unit: t (tonne)
Source CITEPA / SECTEN format – April 2017

Graph Zn 17

Graph Legende sans UTCFv2

Source CITEPA / SECTEN format – April 2017

Tab Zn 17

(*) Following UNECE/NEC definitions : emissions classified "except total" are not included, i.e. emissions from international maritime, emissions from domestic and international air transport cruise (≥ 1000 m), emissions from agriculture and forestry biogenic sources and emissions from non-anthropogenic sources.
(e) preliminary estimate



All sectors of activity contribute to Zn emissions, in varying proportions... (to read more, consult the SECTEN report online via your login and password)

Source des données: CITEPA / SECTEN format - April 2017