Air Quality in Urban Environments

Overview

Urban air quality is a topic which remains high on the scientific and political agenda. Concentrations of most air pollutants are higher in urban areas than in the surrounding rural regions, and given the high population densities, it is within urban areas that the majority of the population receive their air pollutant exposure. Despite the continued implementation of abatement measures, concentrations of air pollutants within urban areas frequently exceed health-based guidelines and stricter measures to restrict...

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Overview

Urban air quality is a topic which remains high on the scientific and political agenda. Concentrations of most air pollutants are higher in urban areas than in the surrounding rural regions, and given the high population densities, it is within urban areas that the majority of the population receive their air pollutant exposure. Despite the continued implementation of abatement measures, concentrations of air pollutants within urban areas frequently exceed health-based guidelines and stricter measures to restrict emissions are required. This comprehensive volume, written by authoritative authors, deals with the basic science of urban air pollution in relation to the sources and concentrations, and the atmospheric chemical and physical processes which determine those concentrations and lead to the formation of secondary pollutants by chemical reactions in the atmosphere. The health effects of urban air pollution are described as is the policy response designed to mitigate the problems. Some of the highest air pollutant exposures occur within underground railway systems and this topic is considered explicitly in its own chapter. With comprehensive coverage from sources through atmospheric processes, to human exposure and effects on health and the policy response, this topical work will be of interest to scientists and policy makers within this field as well advanced students.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The Air We Breathe

Air Quality in Urban Environments

R. E. Hester and R. M. Harrison (Eds.)

RSC Publishing, Cambridge, UK, 2009, 162 pp. (HB) ISBN 9781847559074

Reviewed by Paul Seakins

Hester and Harrison have brought together topical reviews on a number of issues in urban air quality to provide a volume that will be of interest and relevance to a variety of researchers and practitioners in air quality, health and local government.

The volume begins with an introductory chapter introducing the issues around urban air quality and the relationships between air quality, emissions and meteorology. Three chapters then follow looking at urban meteorology, chemical processes and particulate matter. These chapters provide a good introduction to the topics, accessible to the relevant audience and with comprehensive and up to date referencing for further reading.

The final chapters of the book will be particularly useful to atmospheric chemists, as they provide an excellent link between the compositional and mechanistic studies that are such a strong feature of UK research, and health and policy impacts that provide the underpinning rationale for such research. Sotiris Vardoulakis discusses human exposure, highlighting the importance of the indoor as well as outdoor environments, Robert Maynard provides an excellent discussion of health effects (with a set of references that will be a boon to grant writers for many years to come!) and finally Martin Williams discusses the links between air quality and policy.

Chemistry World, 2010, 7(4), p. 58-59

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Product Details

Meet the Author

The series has been edited by Professors Hester and Harrison since it began in 1994.

Professor Roy Harrison OBE is listed by ISI Thomson Scientific (on ISI Web of Knowledge) as a Highly Cited Researcher in the Environmental Science/Ecology category. He has an h-index of 54 (i.e. 54 of his papers have received 54 or more citations in the literature). In 2004 he was appointed OBE for services to environmental science in the New Year Honours List. He was profiled by the Journal of Environmental Monitoring (Vol 5, pp 39N-41N, 2003). Professor Harrison’s research interests lie in the field of environment and human health. His main specialism is in air pollution, from emissions through atmospheric chemical and physical transformations to exposure and effects on human health. Much of this work is designed to inform the development of policy.

Now an emeritus professor, Professor Ron Hester's current activities in chemistry are mainly as an editor and as an external examiner and assessor. He also retains appointments as external examiner and assessor / adviser on courses, individual promotions, and departmental / subject area evaluations both in the UK and abroad.

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Table of Contents

Urban air pollution climates throughout the world Influences of meteorology on air pollution process and concentrations Atmospheric chemical processes important in cities Air pollution in underground railway systems Human exposure: indoor and outdoor Health effects of urban air pollution The policy response to improving urban air quality

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