Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2022-577
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2022-577
 
05 Sep 2022
05 Sep 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Aggravated Air Pollution and Health Burden due to Traffic Congestion in Urban China

Peng Wang1,2,, Ruhan Zhang3,, Shida Sun4, Meng Gao5, Bo Zheng6, Dan Zhang7,8, Yangli Zhang7, Gregory R. Carmichael9, and Hongliang Zhang2,3,10 Peng Wang et al.
  • 1Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai 200438, China
  • 2IRDR ICoE on Risk Interconnectivity and Governance on Weather/Climate Extremes Impact and Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai 200438, China
  • 3Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, Fudan University, Shanghai 200438, China
  • 4Ministry of Education Key Laboratory for Earth System Modelling, Department of Earth System Science, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
  • 5Department of Geography, State Key Laboratory of Environmental and Biological Analysis, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong SAR, 999077, China
  • 6Institute of Environment and Ecology, Tsinghua Shenzhen International Graduate School, Tsinghua University, Shenzhen 518055, China
  • 7State Key Laboratory of Organic Geochemistry and Guangdong Key Laboratory of Environmental Protection and Resources Utilization, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
  • 8University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing,100049, Ch
  • 9Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA52242, USA
  • 10Institute of Eco-Chongming (IEC), Shanghai, 202162, China
  • These authors contributed equally to this work.

Abstract. Vehicle emission is regarded as a primary contributor to air pollution and related adverse health impacts. Heavy traffic congestion increases traffic flow and thus produces more O3 precursors emissions, leading to more adverse air quality issues. Although the development of vehicle emission inventory has received great concern and continuous efforts, limitations still exist. For example, real-time diurnal variations and increases in emission rates due to traffic congestion are not well understood. In this study, we developed a new temporal-allocation approach in transportation emission to investigate its impacts on air quality and health burden due to traffic congestion in China in 2020. Both real-time congestion level data and emission correction factors were considered in the approach. Results show that traffic congestion aggravates air pollution and health burden across China, especially in the urban clusters such as the North China Plain and Sichuan Basin. In these regions, the average annual increases of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone (O3) could be up to 3.5 µg m−3 and 1.1 ppb, respectively. The excess PM2.5 and O3 attributed to the traffic congestion also induce an additional 20,000 and 5,000 premature mortality in China, respectively. In major cities, the increased rate of premature mortality caused by traffic congestion may reach 17.5 %. Therefore, more effective and comprehensive vehicle emission control policies or better planning of the road network should be established to reduce traffic congestion and improve air quality in China.

Peng Wang et al.

Status: open (until 22 Oct 2022)

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Peng Wang et al.

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Short summary
In China, vehicles have jumped significantly in the recent decade. This caused severe traffic congestion and aggravated air pollution. In this study, we developed a new temporal-allocation approach to quantify the impacts of traffic congestion. We found that traffic congestion worsens air quality and health burden across China, especially in the urban clusters. More effective and comprehensive vehicle emission control policies should be implemented to improve air quality in China.
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