Research shows that road asphalt exposed to heat and sunlight may eventually become a significant emissions source.
A new study reports that asphalt emits significant amounts of pollutants in hot conditions. "[Researchers] observed that asphalt emissions doubled when the temperature increased from 40C to 60C — levels the material often reaches in summer," reports Rhi Storer.
When road asphalt was exposed to both solar radiation and heat, to mimic outdoor summer conditions, the researchers found a 300 percent increase in emissions. The release of secondary organic aerosols has been shown to have public health impacts, notes Storer.
While most traffic-related pollution comes from vehicle sources, the impact of cars and trucks may decrease as gross polluters are phased out. As a result, asphalt emissions may contribute more to air pollution as urban areas grow—45 percent of the surface area in the United States is paved—and temperatures rise due to climate change.
Federal Railroad Administration Proposes New Midwest Rail Network
If built, regional high-speed rail networks could provide an alternative to uncomfortable air travel and prevent travelers from becoming stranded at airports during extreme weather.
Planning Trends to Watch in 2022
Building a framework of understanding for the year to come.
Massive New Park Coming to the Inland Empire
A 3.5-mile long greenway will bring trails, recreational facilities, and open space to Ontario, in San Bernardino County, California.
New GOP Governor's Anti-Climate Agenda Takes Shape in Virginia
New Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin made promises on the campaign trail to reverse the state's commitment to climate reductions.
Houston Area's Center of Gravity Shifts Outside the Loop
The population center of Harris County is now outside central Houston, a shift that occurred over the last two decades as the region's suburbs blossomed.
ITE Quickbites: New Transportation and Health Resources
Transportation planning decisions affect our lives in many ways. New Quick Bites (short reports) published by the Institute of Transportation Engineers can help create healthier and happier communities.
City of Mt. Shasta
Ferguson Township, Centre County, PA
Town of Palm Beach
This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.