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Special Issue "Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Paola Michelozzi

Department of Epidemiology, Lazio Regional Health Service-Italy, Via Cristoforo Colombo, 112-00147 Rome, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Interests: environmental epidemiology; climate change; extreme weather events and health; short and long term effect of air pollution; environmental exposure and cancer; public health
Guest Editor
Dr. Francesca De' Donato

Department of Epidemiology, Lazio Regional Health Service-Italy, Via Cristoforo Colombo, 112-00147 Rome, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Interests: environmental epidemiology; exposure assessment; remote sensing; heat warning systems; climate change health effects; urban climate
Guest Editor
Dr. Manuela De Sario

Department of Epidemiology, Lazio Regional Health Service-Italy, Via Cristoforo Colombo, 112-00147 Rome, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +390683060457
Interests: environmental epidemiology; public health; literature reviews

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, such as heat waves, have been increasing in recent years, and are expected to become more severe considering future climate change. The 5th Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Report has recognized that human activity, in particular greenhouse gas emissions, are the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century. In summer, the persistence of stable atmospheric conditions, heat, and changes in precipitation patterns will also influence air quality and the occurrence of forest fires. The summer of 2017 registered exceptional heat waves and forest fires across Southern Europe and the Western USA. The health impacts of air pollution and extreme temperatures have been documented, however evidence on the combined effects and risk factors, in light of recent, more extreme events, needs more attention from researchers and public health practitioners. 

This Special Issue of IJERPH invites papers assessing the health impacts of extreme temperatures and air pollution, from both anthropogenic (traffic, industry, etc.) and natural (fires, dust storms) sources. Considering climate change, studies showing the health co-benefits of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and urban air pollution are of particular interest for this Special Issue. Research studies and reviews on the topic from around the world are encouraged to provide a more profound understanding of the issues and provide new insights on the health risks and promote public health actions to climate change.

Dr. Paola Michelozzi
Dr. Francesca de' Donato
Dr. Manuela De Sario
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Temperature
  • Air pollution
  • Forest fires
  • Climate change and extreme weather events
  • Interaction
  • Short-term health effect
  • Vulnerability

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
A Hybrid Forecasting Approach to Air Quality Time Series Based on Endpoint Condition and Combined Forecasting Model
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1941; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15091941
Received: 21 July 2018 / Revised: 30 August 2018 / Accepted: 3 September 2018 / Published: 6 September 2018
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Abstract
Air pollution forecasting plays a vital role in environment pollution warning and control. Air pollution forecasting studies can also recommend pollutant emission control strategies to mitigate the number of poor air quality days. Although various literature works have focused on the decomposition-ensemble forecasting [...] Read more.
Air pollution forecasting plays a vital role in environment pollution warning and control. Air pollution forecasting studies can also recommend pollutant emission control strategies to mitigate the number of poor air quality days. Although various literature works have focused on the decomposition-ensemble forecasting model, studies concerning the endpoint effect of ensemble empirical mode decomposition (EEMD) and the forecasting model of sub-series selection are still limited. In this study, a hybrid forecasting approach (EEMD-MM-CFM) is proposed based on integrated EEMD with the endpoint condition mirror method and combined forecasting model for sub-series. The main steps of the proposed model are as follows: Firstly, EEMD, which sifts the sub-series intrinsic mode functions (IMFs) and a residue, is proposed based on the endpoint condition method. Then, based on the different individual forecasting methods, an optimal combined forecasting model is developed to forecast the IMFs and residue. Finally, the outputs are obtained by summing the forecasts. For illustration and comparison, air quality index (AQI) data from Hefei in China are used as the sample, and the empirical results indicate that the proposed approach is superior to benchmark models in terms of some forecasting assessment measures. The proposed hybrid approach can be utilized for air quality index forecasting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Synergistic Effects of Ambient Temperature and Air Pollution on Health in Europe: Results from the PHASE Project
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1856; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15091856
Received: 22 June 2018 / Revised: 30 July 2018 / Accepted: 18 August 2018 / Published: 28 August 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (350 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
We studied the potential synergy between air pollution and meteorology and their impact on mortality in nine European cities with data from 2004 to 2010. We used daily series of Apparent Temperature (AT), measurements of particulate matter (PM10), ozone (O3 [...] Read more.
We studied the potential synergy between air pollution and meteorology and their impact on mortality in nine European cities with data from 2004 to 2010. We used daily series of Apparent Temperature (AT), measurements of particulate matter (PM10), ozone (O3), and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and total non-accidental, cardiovascular, and respiratory deaths. We applied Poisson regression for city-specific analysis and random effects meta-analysis to combine city-specific results, separately for the warm and cold seasons. In the warm season, the percentage increase in all deaths from natural causes per °C increase in AT tended to be greater during high ozone days, although this was only significant for all ages when all causes were considered. On low ozone days, the increase in the total daily number of deaths was 1.84% (95% CI 0.87, 2.82), whilst it was 2.20% (95% CI 1.28, 3.13) in the high ozone days per 1 °C increase in AT. Interaction with PM10 was significant for cardiovascular (CVD) causes of death for all ages (2.24% on low PM10 days (95% CI 1.01, 3.47) whilst it is 2.63% (95% CI 1.57, 3.71) on high PM10 days) and for ages 75+. In days with heat waves, no consistent pattern of interaction was observed. For the cold period, no evidence for synergy was found. In conclusion, some evidence of interactive effects between hot temperature and the levels of ozone and PM10 was found, but no consistent synergy could be identified during the cold season. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health)
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Short-Term Effects of Heat on Mortality and Effect Modification by Air Pollution in 25 Italian Cities
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(8), 1771; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15081771
Received: 1 July 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 14 August 2018 / Published: 17 August 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1103 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Evidence on the health effects of extreme temperatures and air pollution is copious. However few studies focused on their interaction. The aim of this study is to evaluate daily PM10 and ozone as potential effect modifiers of the relationship between temperature and natural [...] Read more.
Evidence on the health effects of extreme temperatures and air pollution is copious. However few studies focused on their interaction. The aim of this study is to evaluate daily PM10 and ozone as potential effect modifiers of the relationship between temperature and natural mortality in 25 Italian cities. Time-series analysis was run for each city. To evaluate interaction, a tensor product between mean air temperature (lag 0–3) and either PM10 or ozone (both lag 0–5) was defined and temperature estimates were extrapolated at low, medium, and high levels of pollutants. Heat effects were estimated as percent change in mortality for increases in temperature between 75th and 99th percentiles. Results were pooled by geographical area. Differential temperature-mortality risks by air pollutants were found. For PM10, estimates ranged from 3.9% (low PM10) to 14.1% (high PM10) in the North, from 3.6% to 24.4% in the Center, and from 7.5% to 21.6% in the South. Temperature-related mortality was similarly modified by ozone in northern and central Italy, while no effect modification was observed in the South. This study underlines the synergistic effects of heat and air pollution on mortality. Considering the predicted increase in heat waves and stagnation events in the Mediterranean countries such as Italy, it is time to enclose air pollution within public health heat prevention plans. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health)
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Open AccessArticle
Development of Ahmedabad’s Air Information and Response (AIR) Plan to Protect Public Health
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1460; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071460
Received: 31 May 2018 / Revised: 29 June 2018 / Accepted: 5 July 2018 / Published: 10 July 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (3190 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Indian cities struggle with some of the highest ambient air pollution levels in the world. While national efforts are building momentum towards concerted action to reduce air pollution, individual cities are taking action on this challenge to protect communities from the many health [...] Read more.
Indian cities struggle with some of the highest ambient air pollution levels in the world. While national efforts are building momentum towards concerted action to reduce air pollution, individual cities are taking action on this challenge to protect communities from the many health problems caused by this harmful environmental exposure. In 2017, the city of Ahmedabad launched a regional air pollution monitoring and risk communication project, the Air Information and Response (AIR) Plan. The centerpiece of the plan is an air quality index developed by the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology’s System for Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research program that summarizes information from 10 new continuous air pollution monitoring stations in the region, each reporting data that can help people avoid harmful exposures and inform policy strategies to achieve cleaner air. This paper focuses on the motivation, development, and implementation of Ahmedabad’s AIR Plan. The project is discussed in terms of its collaborative roots, public health purpose in addressing the grave threat of air pollution (particularly to vulnerable groups), technical aspects in deploying air monitoring technology, and broader goals for the dissemination of an air quality index linked to specific health messages and suggested actions to reduce harmful exposures. The city of Ahmedabad is among the first cities in India where city leaders, state government, and civil society are proactively working together to address the country’s air pollution challenge with a focus on public health. The lessons learned from the development of the AIR Plan serve as a template for other cities aiming to address the heavy burden of air pollution on public health. Effective working relationships are vital since they form the foundation for long-term success and useful knowledge sharing beyond a single city. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health)
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Open AccessArticle
Health Impacts and Economic Costs of Air Pollution in the Metropolitan Area of Skopje
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(4), 626; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15040626
Received: 26 January 2018 / Revised: 19 March 2018 / Accepted: 27 March 2018 / Published: 29 March 2018
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (2040 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Background: Urban outdoor air pollution, especially particulate matter, remains a major environmental health problem in Skopje, the capital of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Despite the documented high levels of pollution in the city, the published evidence on its health impacts is [...] Read more.
Background: Urban outdoor air pollution, especially particulate matter, remains a major environmental health problem in Skopje, the capital of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Despite the documented high levels of pollution in the city, the published evidence on its health impacts is as yet scarce. Methods: we obtained, cleaned, and validated Particulate Matter (PM) concentration data from five air quality monitoring stations in the Skopje metropolitan area, applied relevant concentration-response functions, and evaluated health impacts against two theoretical policy scenarios. We then calculated the burden of disease attributable to PM and calculated the societal cost due to attributable mortality. Results: In 2012, long-term exposure to PM2.5 (49.2 μg/m3) caused an estimated 1199 premature deaths (CI95% 821–1519). The social cost of the predicted premature mortality in 2012 due to air pollution was estimated at between 570 and 1470 million euros. Moreover, PM2.5 was also estimated to be responsible for 547 hospital admissions (CI95% 104–977) from cardiovascular diseases, and 937 admissions (CI95% 937–1869) for respiratory disease that year. Reducing PM2.5 levels to the EU limit (25 μg/m3) could have averted an estimated 45% of PM-attributable mortality, while achieving the WHO Air Quality Guidelines (10 μg/m3) could have averted an estimated 77% of PM-attributable mortality. Both scenarios would also attain significant reductions in attributable respiratory and cardiovascular hospital admissions. Conclusions: Besides its health impacts in terms of increased premature mortality and hospitalizations, air pollution entails significant economic costs to the population of Skopje. Reductions in PM2.5 concentrations could provide substantial health and economic gains to the city. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health)
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Open AccessArticle
Spatiotemporal Characteristics and Health Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals in PM2.5 in Zhejiang Province
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(4), 583; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15040583
Received: 12 February 2018 / Revised: 9 March 2018 / Accepted: 23 March 2018 / Published: 24 March 2018
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (10217 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The spatiotemporal characteristics and human health risks of 12 heavy metals (Al, As, Be, Cd, Cr, Hg, Mn, Ni, Pb, Sb, Se, and Tl) in fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in Zhejiang Province were investigated. The annual average PM2.5 concentration was [...] Read more.
The spatiotemporal characteristics and human health risks of 12 heavy metals (Al, As, Be, Cd, Cr, Hg, Mn, Ni, Pb, Sb, Se, and Tl) in fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in Zhejiang Province were investigated. The annual average PM2.5 concentration was 58.83 µg/m3 in 2015 in Zhejiang. Element contents in PM2.5 varied greatly with the season and locations. Al, Pb, and Mn were the most abundant elements among the studied metal(loid)s in PM2.5. The non-carcinogenic risks of the 12 elements through inhalation and dermal contact exposure were lower than the safe level for children and adults. However, there were potential non-carcinogenic risks of Tl, As, and Sb for children and Tl for adults through ingestion exposure. The carcinogenic risks from As, Be, Cd, Cr, Pb, and Ni through inhalation exposure were less than the acceptable level (1 × 10−4) for children and adults. Pb may carry a potential carcinogenic risk for both children and adults through ingestion. More attention should be paid to alleviate non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic health risks posed by particle-bound toxic elements through ingestion exposure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health)
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Open AccessArticle
The Burden of COPD Morbidity Attributable to the Interaction between Ambient Air Pollution and Temperature in Chengdu, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(3), 492; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15030492
Received: 24 January 2018 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 8 March 2018 / Published: 11 March 2018
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (1542 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Evidence on the burden of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) morbidity attributable to the interaction between ambient air pollution and temperature has been limited. This study aimed to examine the modification effect of temperature on the association of ambient air pollutants (including particulate [...] Read more.
Evidence on the burden of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) morbidity attributable to the interaction between ambient air pollution and temperature has been limited. This study aimed to examine the modification effect of temperature on the association of ambient air pollutants (including particulate matter (PM) with aerodynamic diameter <10 μm (PM10) and <2.5 μm (PM2.5), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), sulfur dioxide (SO2), carbon monoxide (CO) and ozone (O3)) with risk of hospital admissions (HAs) for COPD, as well as the associated morbidity burden in urban areas of Chengdu, China, from 2015 to 2016. Based on the generalized additive model (GAM) with quasi-Poisson link, bivariate response surface model and stratification parametric model were developed to investigate the potential interactions between ambient air pollution and temperature on COPD HAs. We found consistent interactions between ambient air pollutants (PM2.5, PM10 and SO2) and low temperature on COPD HAs, demonstrated by the stronger associations between ambient air pollutants and COPD HAs at low temperatures than at moderate temperatures. Subgroup analyses showed that the elderly (≥80 years) and males were more vulnerable to this interaction. The joint effect of PM and low temperature had the greatest impact on COPD morbidity burden. Using WHO air quality guidelines as reference concentration, about 17.30% (95% CI: 12.39%, 22.19%) and 14.72% (95% CI: 10.38%, 19.06%) of COPD HAs were attributable to PM2.5 and PM10 exposures on low temperature days, respectively. Our findings suggested that low temperature significantly enhanced the effects of PM and SO2 on COPD HAs in urban Chengdu, resulting in increased morbidity burden. This evidence has important implications for developing interventions to reduce the risk effect of COPD morbidity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change, Extreme Temperatures, Air Pollution, and Health)
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