Urban Green Spaces Will Make You Happier than Winning the Lottery

A new study published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology finds that moving to a more-green area can have a long-lasting positive effect on mental health, unlike the short-term jolt from pay rises, promotions or winning the lottery.
January 15, 2014, 6am PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Doug Kerr (dougtone)

Researchers from the European Centre for Environment and Human Health at the University of Exeter, UK have completed a study of the mental health benefits of urban green spaces, reports Mark Kinver with the BBC. The study, which tracked tracked mental health outcomes of 1,000 participants over a five year period, was driven by a desire to find out "whether living in greener urban areas had a lasting positive effect on people's sense of well-being or whether the effect also disappeared after a period of time."

"To do this, the team used data from the British Household Panel Survey (now known as the Understanding Society survey), which began in 1991, and compiled by the University of Essex," explains Kinver. 

"Explaining what the data revealed, [Co-author Mathew White] said: 'What you see is that even after three years, mental health is still better which is unlike many of the other things that we think will make us happy.'"

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Published on Saturday, January 11, 2014 in BBC News
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