urban pollution News

  • Urban greening reduces noise pollution

    Green roofs have the potential to significantly reduce road traffic noise in the urban environment, according to a new study. The results suggest that greening of roofs and walls with materials suitable for growing plants softens the urban environment keeping sound levels low, whereas hard, manmade structures tend to amplify traffic noise. The Environmental Noise Directive (2002/49/EC)1 ...

  • Polluted urban soil damages lime trees

    The impact of polluted urban soil on trees is highlighted in a recent study from Latvia. The researchers found that high salt levels from de-icing chemicals and nutrient imbalance in soil damaged lime trees growing in the city of Riga. Trees planted in cities are an important part of the urban landscape, providing a range of benefits, from enhancing biodiversity to promoting a feeling of ...

  • New Study Links Urban Pollutants to Parkinson’s Disease

    EMSL Analytical offers environmental testing services to protect people from exposure to pollutants and hazardous materials. Cinnaminson, NJ, Scientists at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis recently analyzed data from 35,000 patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease.  The findings, published in the “American Journal of Epidemiology,” examined data ...


    By EMSL Analytical, Inc.

  • Careful urban tree planting and pruning needed to reduce trapping of air pollution

    Careful planting and pruning is needed to ensure that air pollution in tree-lined streets is minimised, new research suggests. While planting trees in urban areas can have many benefits, such as enhancing biodiversity, trees can trap particulate matter pollution, say the study’s authors. Particulate matter (PM) air pollution is a component of vehicle exhaust emissions and PM2.5 (particles ...

  • Urban impacts on phosphorus in streams

    Although phosphorus is an essential nutrient for all life forms, essential amounts of the chemical element can cause water quality problems in rivers, lakes, and coastal zones. High concentrations of phosphorus in aquatic ecosystems are often associated with human activities in the surrounding area, such as agriculture and urban development. However, relationships between specific human ...

  • The Real Urban Jungle

    How well do you understand life in your own backyard? Cities and suburbs form their own unique ecosystems and ecology, where humans aren’t visitors; they are an integral component, like trees in a forest or coral in a reef. If more than half of the Earth’s people live in cities and the amount of paved surfaces in the United States is equivalent to the area of Ohio, shouldn’t our ...

  • Urban water ecology

    Sewage overflows are a fact of life in urban areas, and in many cities, excess sewage water enters streams and lakes with rain runoff. Although this pollution is harmful to most organisms, there is one group of insects that thrives on it: mosquitoes. Luis Fernando Chaves, a post-doctoral researcher at Emory University, and his team discovered mosquitoes in abundance in a sewage-contaminated ...

  • Environmental risks of urban creep

    A recent study published in the Water and Environment Journal has shown that permeable hardstanding solutions should be promoted through legislation, education and incentives. With the aim of supporting any proposed changes to Scottish building regulations, the authors investigated the impact of hardstanding on flood risk and water quality. Urban development generally leads to an increase in ...

  • The Ebb and Flow of Urban Water

    The average homeowner in Canada pays about a penny for every three litres of water they consume. Because water is so cheap, not many people pay attention to their water bills. Nor do they think twice when they pay over a hundred times as much for virtually the same water in a plastic bottle purchased at a convenience store. We flush our toilets, wash our laundry and brush our teeth every day ...


    By GLOBE Foundation

  • A healthy urban habitat

    Half the world's population live in cities. By 2050, the total number of urban dwellers is expected to nearly double, rising from 3.3 billion to 6.4 billion1. How do we accommodate urbanisation while ensuring good quality of life and health? How do we minimise environmental damage but still develop our cities? This thematic issue provides a window into the research evidence that can help us ...

  • New Air Pollution solutions released: ADMS-Urban, ADMS-Roads & ADMS-Airport 4.0

    ADMS-Urban is the comprehensive system for modelling air quality in large urban areas, cities and towns. ADMS-Roads is designed for investigating ...

  • Poorest are worst affected by urban expansion

    Rapid expansion of cities has a greater negative impact on poorer inhabitants who cannot afford to move to the outskirts where the air is cleaner, according to a recent study which examined the effects of urban sprawl. Urban sprawl is characterised by rapid, expansive growth of a town or city, which is often driven by uncontrolled development of suburbs at the edges. During this two-part study, ...

  • Remediation of polluted soils

    Inkoa Sistemas, a Spanish company specialising in supplying integral solutions for sustainable development, leads the Biosoil ENV/ES/000263 project, the main objective of which is to demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of Compost Bioremediation technology for the remediation of polluted soils in order to promote a sustainable form of urban planning of derelict polluted sites, and ...

  • Bikes’ niche in Urban transport expanding

    In a new blog entry, Worldwatch Senior Researcher Gary Gardner reports on efforts worldwide to improve urban cycling rates for environmental, health, and fiscal benefits. The District of Columbia last week opened its latest set of dedicated bike lanes, part of a citywide effort to encourage cycling. The lanes run down the middle of Pennsylvania Avenue, the busy thoroughfare that connects the U.S. ...


    By Worldwatch Institute

  • Modifying urban rivers to increase biodiversity

    Urban rivers are typically heavily-engineered and polluted with degraded habitats. They are therefore a priority for biodiversity restoration. Research suggests that relatively simple modifications to river walls may potentially encourage biodiversity by significantly improving habitats for plants and animals. The EU’s Water Framework Directive requires good ecological status in surface waters by ...

  • Nitrate pollution management workshop

    At the European level, surface and groundwater nitrate pollution remains of major concern, despite considerable efforts made over the last decades via e.g. Nitrate Directive and Urban Waste Water Directive. Currently, all parties from European to local level dealing with nitrate pollution face the same challenge: significant improvement in managing and controlling human inputs of nitrate in the ...

  • Reducing runoff pollution in the US

    Over the past century, runaway development has paved over forests, fields and wetlands across the country. Along with urbanization has come the problem of 'urban stormwater' – rainwater that washes over dirty surfaces such as roads, buildings and lawns and becomes a major source of pollution in rivers, lakes and bays. While much has been achieved in the past 30 years to limit pollution from ...


    By Erosion Control Forum

  • Global advances in nutrient pollution

    The UK’s Thames Water and Canada-based Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies are to form a partnership to build and operate Europe’s first wastewater treatment facility that removes phosphorus and converts it into commercial fertilizer. However, the USGS reports that phosphorus levels in US fresh water remain high and progress is absent. American environmentalist Robert F. Kennedy, ...

  • Groundwater pollution in Europe: an overview

    An overview of groundwater contaminants in Europe is provided by a recent study, which calls for more integrated monitoring using a range of indicators. Groundwater contamination presents serious health and environmental concerns. A number of Directives, including the Water Framework, Groundwater, Nitrates, Industrial Emissions and Landfill Directives, together aim to protect groundwater from ...

  • Quantifying the ecosystem services provided by urban green spaces

    A new study has quantified the ecosystem services (ES) provided by green spaces in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, using new methods to evaluate high-resolution land-cover data. The findings show that different types of green space provide different ecosystem services, highlighting the importance of careful design during city planning. The authors say their method to map ecosystem services supply ...


    By GLOBE Foundation

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