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Synergies between environmental pressures in the urban climate: combined air quality and noise exposure assessment in Thessaloniki, Greece

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Pages :
209 - 217

Vlachokostas Ch. Michailidou A.V. Athanasiadis A. Moussiopoulos N.
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This study offers a combined analysis of personal exposure to noise and air pollution within the metropolitan centre of Thessaloniki, Greece. The area is selected on the grounds that it is considered as one of the most polluted cities in Europe, especially with respect to air pollution. An extensive survey has been designed to provide detailed information on CO and VOC concentrations and noise pollution levels in the main modes of transport and along heavy traffic routes inside the core of the urban area under consideration. Air pollution and noise measurements were performed simultaneously along several commuting routes, during morning and evening rush hours. Personal portable devices were used. The results highlight the magnitude of air and noise urban scale personal exposure, since they depict a considerable environmental burden for the citizens of Thessaloniki, especially for VOCs and noise pollution levels. Furthermore, they provide, for the first time, a combined exposure assessment to these environmental pollutants for Thessaloniki and in this sense they are of importance for local public authorities and decision makers. The material herein points out the importance of micro-environmental monitoring and the necessity of considering environmental pollution in urban areas in a more holistic way.