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Atmosphere 2018, 9(8), 299; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9080299

The Effect of Nonlocal Vehicle Restriction Policy on Air Quality in Shanghai

1
Center for Intelligent Transportation Systems and Unmanned Aerial Systems Applications, State Key Laboratory of Ocean Engineering, School of Naval Architecture, Ocean & Civil Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
2
China Institute for Urban Governance, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
3
Department of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 8 June 2018 / Revised: 24 July 2018 / Accepted: 28 July 2018 / Published: 30 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in China: Past, Present and Future)
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Abstract

In recent years, road space rationing policies have been increasingly applied as a traffic management solution to tackle congestion and traffic emission problems in big cities. Existing studies on the effect of traffic policy on air quality have mainly focused on the odd–even day traffic restriction policy or one-day-per-week restriction policy. There are few studies paying attention to the effect of nonlocal license plate restrictions on air quality in Shanghai. Restrictions toward nonlocal vehicles usually prohibit vehicles with nonlocal license plates from entering certain urban areas or using certain subsets of the road network (e.g., the elevated expressway) during specific time periods on workdays. To investigate the impact of such a policy on the residents’ exposure to pollutants, CO concentration and Air Quality Index (AQI) were compared during January and February in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Regression discontinuity (RD) was used to test the validity of nonlocal vehicle restriction on mitigating environmental pollution. Several conclusions can be made: (1) CO concentration was higher on ground-level roads on the restriction days than those in the nonrestriction days; (2) the extension of the restriction period exposed the commuters to high pollution for a longer time on the ground, which will do harm to them; and (3) the nonlocal vehicle restriction policy did play a role in improving the air quality in Shanghai when extending the evening rush period. Additionally, some suggestions are mentioned in order to improve air quality and passenger health and safety. View Full-Text
Keywords: traffic policy; elevated highway; CO; regression discontinuity traffic policy; elevated highway; CO; regression discontinuity
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Li, J.; Li, X.-B.; Li, B.; Peng, Z.-R. The Effect of Nonlocal Vehicle Restriction Policy on Air Quality in Shanghai. Atmosphere 2018, 9, 299.

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