Modelling the Impacts of Mobility on Urban Air Quality and Population Health: Scenario Analysis of the Barcelona Metropolitan Mobility Plan



Modelling the Impacts of Mobility on Urban Air Quality and Population Health: Scenario Analysis of the Barcelona Metropolitan Mobility Plan

Nominated for The Planning for Sustainable Land Use and Transport Award

Authors

Carles Conill, Area Metropolitana De Barcelona, Joan Marull López, IERMB, Maite PÉREZ PÉREZ, IERMB

Description

We develop an integrated model of intra-urban mobility in order to assess population exposure to traffic emissions and health impacts. The model is used in the Strategic Environmental Assessment of the Barcelona Metropolitan Mobility Plan (PMMU).

Abstract

Transportation exerts a great deal of pressure on the environment, and it has become the first source of emission of harmful local pollutants. The objective is to develop a high spatial resolution and integrated model of intra-urban mobility in order to assess population exposure to traffic emissions. The model is conceived for its use in the Strategic Environmental Assessment of the Barcelona Metropolitan Mobility Plan (PMMU), and it will allow the development of different scenarios to reflect the environmental and health impacts of the proposed measures. In addition, it will serve to analyse social and spatial disparities in exposure to pollution according to different urban and economic settings.

The integrated model, implemented in a GIS environment, includes: i) a model of mobility and related emissions; ii) a model of population exposure to air pollution and health-related effects; and (iii) a predictive model of population change. The mobility model incorporates for the first time both motorized and non-motorized means of transport, and provides future mobility scenarios according to different origin-destination matrices and transport infrastructure. It estimates the emissions of main pollutants (NOx, NO2, PM10 and PM2,5) using emission factors disaggregated by vehicle typology (light vehicles, trucks and buses) and average speed at rush hour and in free flow (50/50). The model of pollution exposure uses a land-use regression methodology to predict pollution concentrations. This serves to estimate the degree of exposure of the population and vulnerable public facilities (i.e. educational and health facilities). Other parts of this model include identifying the health impacts on the exposed population: risk assessment and characterization, and dose-response relationship. This will be estimated for the different scenarios of measures implementation.

The ongoing analysis (we have reached a first stage of development) shows some interesting results on the socio-spatial distribution of emitted pollutants. In 2014, some 30% of the population living in the metropolitan area of Barcelona were exposed to high levels of NO2 emissions (10 tonnes per day), another 30% were exposed to medium levels (5-10 tonnes per day) and the remaining (40%) were exposed to low levels (

Publisher

Association for European Transport