Greenbelts do not reduce NO2 concentrations in near-road environments

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http://hdl.handle.net/10138/225348

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Yli-Pelkonen , V J , Viippola , J V , Kotze , D J & Setälä , H M 2017 , ' Greenbelts do not reduce NO2 concentrations in near-road environments ' , Urban Climate , vol. 21 , pp. 306-317 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.uclim.2017.08.005

Title: Greenbelts do not reduce NO2 concentrations in near-road environments
Author: Yli-Pelkonen, Vesa Johannes; Viippola, Juho Viljami; Kotze, David Johannes; Setälä, Heikki Martti
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Environmental Sciences
University of Helsinki, Environmental Sciences
University of Helsinki, Fifth Dimension - Vegetated roofs and walls in urban areas
University of Helsinki, Environmental Sciences
Date: 2017-08-10
Language: eng
Number of pages: 12
Belongs to series: Urban Climate
ISSN: 2212-0955
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/225348
Abstract: Trees are believed to improve air quality, thus providing an important ecosystem service for urban inhabitants. However, empirical evidence on the beneficial effects of urban vegetation on air quality at the local level and in boreal climatic regions is scarce. We studied the influence of greenbelt-type forest patches on NO2 levels (i) in front of, (ii) inside and (iii) behind greenbelts next to major roads in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area, Finland, during summer and winter using passive collectors. Concentrations of NO2 were significantly higher in front of greenbelts compared to road sides without greenbelts. The more trees there were inside greenbelts the higher the NO2 level in front of greenbelts, likely due to the formation of a recirculation zone of air flow in front of greenbelts. Similarly, NO2 levels were higher inside greenbelts than in open areas without them, likely due to reduced air flow inside greenbelts. NO2 levels behind greenbelts were similar to those detected at the same distance from the road but without greenbelts. Our results suggest that, regardless of season, roadside greenbelts of mostly broadleaf trees do not reduce NO2 levels in near-road environments, but can result in higher NO2 levels in front of and inside greenbelts.
Subject: 1172 Environmental sciences
Air pollution
Air Pollutants
Urban vegetation
URBAN TREES
Greenbelts
Vegetation barrier
PASSIVE SAMPLERS
HELSINKI
FOREST PATCHES
NO2
Nitrogen dioxide
ECOSYSTEM SERVICES
near-road environment
Road traffic
Urban ecosystems
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