Air Pollution Exposure and the Health of Neighbourhoods in Ottawa, Canada

Air Pollution and Health: Toward Improving the Spatial Definition of Exposure, Susceptibility and Risk  (Marie-Pierre Parenteau, PhD Thesis, Dept of Geography, University of Ottawa, 2011)

The focus today is an assessment of whether “where one lives impacts one’s health“ holds true at the “inter-urban” scale for 90 neighbourhoods (defined using a number of social indicators)  in Ottawa, Canada’s 4th largest city. While no statistical association was found between spatial variations of NO2  and community health, despite the established general link in the literature for individuals between pollution and health i.e. the health of an individual is determined by much more than the air pollution near their residence. Ottawa is surrounded by a “greenbelt” (shown as a low pollution yellow on the figure below) which is also close to most of residential Ottawa, while the downtown core, where most people work and fewer live, has many pollution hotspots. As the author points out, exposure and mobility need to be considered when assessing health impacts.

To see Key Quotes and Links to key reports about this post, click HERE


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