Recently, green infrastructure – the integration of plants into urban areas – has gained traction as a potential mitigation method for air pollution. As well as improving the balance of Carbon Dioxide and Oxygen in the air, plants are capable of removing, and dispersing airborne pollutants, and so are a potentially useful tool for improving air quality. By integrating plants and green infrastructure into cities, we can improve air quality and create healthier environments for everyone. In this blog post, we will explore the question: Can plants help make London’s air safe to breathe?
Understanding Air Pollution in Urban Areas
What is air pollution, and why are urban areas particularly affected?
Air pollution is an umbrella term to describe airborne substances that are damaging to human health. The sources of these pollutants are almost always linked to human activities such as industry and transport – cars, motorbikes, and trucks are by far the biggest culprit from their exhaust fumes and tyre and brake degradation. The structure of urban spaces then compounds the problem by trapping these emissions between buildings, creating ‘street canyons’ that cause highly polluted roads and roadside spaces. This means that cities are very vulnerable to the problem and now the air in urban spaces is very often hazardous to people.
The Power of Urban Greening
What is urban greening, and how can it contribute to improving air quality?
Urban greening involves the integration of green spaces, vegetation, and plant-based infrastructure into urban environments. It encompasses various elements, including parks, green roofs, living walls, parklets, sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) and custom planters. These green interventions play a crucial role in mitigating air pollution and creating healthier cities.
?Green Roofs, Living Walls, and Green Infastructure Read More