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Geostatistical modelling of health inequalities associated with exposure to road-transport emissions

Jephcote, Calvin (2013) Geostatistical modelling of health inequalities associated with exposure to road-transport emissions. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Road-transport accounts for a substantial proportion of the air quality objective pollutants experienced within the post-industrial cityscape. Traditionally, investigations have quantified the temporal health effects of such pollutants, yet the confined nature of European intraurban environments often determine spatial variations in traffic pollutant levels, which tend to be associated with a plethora of social disparities. Recently, elements of spatial heterogeneity have attracted the attention of governmental advisory committees, whom acknowledge a limited understanding of spatially inclusive practices in-spite of their potentially valuable applications (COMEAP 2006). Through considering spatial variations in children’s respiratory health, across the model British multicultural City of Leicester (Vidal-Hall 2003), this project aimed to address the inadequacies of temporal models in capturing Pearce et al’s (2010) wider ‘triple jeopardy’. The projects findings indicated significant global relationships to exist between children’s hospitalisations, social-economic-status, ethnic minorities, and PM10 road-transport emissions within Leicester. ‘Local Indicators of Spatial Association’ and ‘Geographically Weighted Regression’ identified important localised variations within the dataset, specifically relating to a ‘double-burden’ of residentially experienced road-transport emissions and deprivation effecting inner-city children’s respiratory health. Further examination of the spatial field’s, revealed critical distance-responses to exist between respiratory health fronts and select socio-environmental phenomenon, thus recognising the importance of exposure gradients found in the every-day environment. It was suggested that exposure to detrimental socio-environmental factors initiated upper respiratory episodes, with prolonged contact impeding recovery leaving the child vulnerable to infection, exacerbating previous complaints and potentially causing conditions of greater severity. These findings provide a preliminary link between extreme cases of ‘Catarrhal Child Syndrome’ and socio-environmental influences, a conclusion previously eluding medical practitioners. Interestingly, affluent intra-urban communities tended to contribute the highest levels of emission from private transport, whilst residentially experiencing few environmental burdens. Thus, indicating that environmental injustices prevail across the model British multicultural city of Leicester. To readdress such environmental imbalances, the project suggested and explored a selection of general and community tailored transport schemes. In conclusion, geostatistical approaches are viewed to be an effective set of tools for health and urban planners, in the management of localised issues, which have previously been ‘filtered’ out by temporal practices.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
ISBN: 978-0-85731-495-6
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Environment (Leeds) > Institute for Transport Studies (Leeds)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.589277
Depositing User: Repository Administrator
Date Deposited: 06 Jan 2014 15:01
Last Modified: 07 Mar 2014 11:48
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/4931

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