The epidemiological research benefits from an accurate characterization of both spatial and temporal variability of exposure to air pollution. This work aims at proposing a method to combine the high spatial resolution of Land Use Regression (LUR) models with the high temporal resolution of fixed site monitoring data, to model spatiotemporal variability of NO2 over a wide geographical area in Northern Italy. We developed seasonal LUR models to reconstruct the spatial distribution of a scaling factor that relates local concentrations to those measured at two reference central sites, one for the northern flat area and one for the southern mountain area. We calculated the daily average concentrations at 19 locations spread over the study areas as the product of the local scaling factor and the reference central site concentrations. We evaluated model performance comparing modeled and measured NO2 data. LUR model's R2 ranges from 0.76 to 0.92. The main predictors refers substantially to traffic, industrial land use, buildings volume and altitude a.s.l. The model's performance in reproducing measured concentrations was satisfactory. The temporal variability of concentrations was well captured: Spearman correlation between model and measures was > 0.7 for almost all sites. Model's average absolute errors were in the order of 10 μg m− 3. The model for the southern area tends to overestimate measured concentrations. Our modeling framework was able to reproduce spatiotemporal differences in NO2 concentrations. This kind of model is less data-intensive than usual regional atmospheric models and it may be very helpful to assess population exposure within studies in which individual relevant exposure occurs along periods of days or months.
Combining land use regression models and fixed site monitoring to reconstruct spatiotemporal variability of NO2 concentrations over a wide geographical area / Cordioli, M.; Pironi, C.; De Munari, E.; Marmiroli, N.; Lauriola, P.; Ranzi, A.. - In: SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT. - ISSN 0048-9697. - 574(2017), pp. 1075-1084. [10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.09.089]
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