risks

Air pollution and health risks due to vehicle traffic

Abstract

Traffic congestion increases vehicle emissions and degrades ambient air quality, and recent studies have shown excess morbidity and mortality for drivers, commuters and individuals living near major roadways. Presently, our understanding of the air pollution impacts from congestion on roads is very limited. This study demonstrates an approach to characterize risks of traffic for on- and near-road populations. Simulation modeling was used to estimate on- and near-road NO2 concentrations and health risks for freeway and arterial scenarios attributable to traffic for different traffic volumes during rush hour periods. The modeling used emission factors from two different models (Comprehensive Modal Emissions Model and Motor Vehicle Emissions Factor Model version 6.2), an empirical traffic speed–volume relationship, the California Line Source Dispersion Model, an empirical NO2–NOx relationship, estimated travel time changes during congestion, and concentration–response relationships from the literature, which give emergency doctor visits, hospital admissions and mortality

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