Roadside vegetation barriers can improve near-road air quality and can affect the public health positively for populations near high-volume roadways.
This article summarizes a workshop in Sacramento, California, in June 2012 of a multidisciplinary group of researchers and policy makers to discuss roadside vegetation as an option for mitigating the health impacts of air quality near roads. The summary includes workshop discussions, an overview of the role that roadside vegetation may play in reducing population exposures to air pollutants emitted by traffic. Roadside vegetation also is examined as a sustainable mitigation option in the context of other potential benefits and disbenefits.
Roadside vegetation barriers can improve near-road air quality and can affect the public health positively for populations near high-volume roadways. Although questions remain about the optimal design features for vegetation barriers, the current scientific understanding warrants pilot studies to investigate this potential strategy for mitigating air quality. Three-dimensional modeling of PM transport and deposition in roadside barriers, combined with field monitoring and verification studies, are contributing valuable new knowledge to the design and management of effective barriers. (2013) TR News.