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Urban Air Pollution

Abstract

Air pollution is currently the most serious environmental risk worldwide. Air pollution is the result of different driving forces (demography, economic growth, consumption patterns, energy options, cultural traditions, etc.) constrained by climate conditions, urban shapes and development patterns, distance to industrial or mining activities, air quality regulations and plans, etc. Air quality has been improving in some of the largest cities in Latin America, yet in most of them ambient air quality standards are not attained. In Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, and Mexico, the most polluted city is not the country’s capital, emphasizing the relevance of sustainable local governance. In countries that report air quality just for their capital cities, most of their pollution levels are above the respective national ambient air quality standards. There is less information for mid-sized cities, and the available results are mixed. We present case studies from several countries that show serious air quality exposure for millions of inhabitants, especially the low-income segment. We discuss environmental justice, urban governance, and citizen participation in decision-making processes, sustainable urban transport options, and gender issues throughout those case studies.

Keywords

  • Air pollution
  • Health impacts
  • Receptor modeling
  • Air quality management
  • Environmental justice
  • Sustainable urban development

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-97013-4_7
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Correspondence to Héctor Jorquera .

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Jorquera, H., Montoya, L.D., Rojas, N.Y. (2019). Urban Air Pollution. In: Henríquez, C., Romero, H. (eds) Urban Climates in Latin America. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-97013-4_7

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