The State of the Science on Urbanization and Air Quality

July 1, 2010

Funding: GW Institute for Sustainability Research, Education, and Policy

Summary: This project aims to synthesize recent research regarding urbanization, air quality, and ecosystem health.  The goal of this project is to map urban ecosystem stress and response strategies with respect to global urban air pollution.  The project will briefly summarize the state of the science on urbanization and air quality, with a focus on the most important factors responsible for recent change in urban air quality.  The literature review will next identify urban areas already stressed by air pollution (such as from ozone or fine particulate matter), compile predictions regarding future population change and its air quality impact, and compile information regarding locally-adopted sustainability strategies to deal with coming air pollution stress.  The paper will highlight response strategies that appear most promising with respect to maintaining or improving urban air quality in the face of rapid urbanization.  The paper will conclude with a summary of current research gaps and an agenda for future GW research oriented towards local sustainability efforts.



Andrea Sarzynski