This symposium includes several contributions on indicators representing the spatial and social distribution of environmental and social factors in urban areas. The symposiums aims to develop a discussion on an integrated perspective that supports decision making for environmental justice.

The following contributions will be part of the Symposium (abstracts on each are submitted separately)

Urban Green Indicators as support of public policies making-decision

Wissal Selmi, Christiane Weber, Lotfi Mehdi

Urban greenways are considered as complex urban infrastructures all over Europe. To quest for coherence between protecting urban biodiversity and providing maintenance and social ecosystem services, today’s urban policies have to adapt their choices towards structural and functional constraints. Thus a multidisciplinary approach to identify the multifunctional character of the greenways is then required.

Considering the gap in the body of knowledge dealing with urban greenways some new elements have to be developed such as ecologic valuation modeling, like the urban model I-Trees (USDA) or park lawns biodiversity assessment defined on evidence based theory developments..

The objectives of the presentation are (i) to define the sample design and the data collected, (ii) to explain the choice of the model and the design of biodiversity assessment analyses, (iii) to discuss the results regarding the environmental and geographic context. Finally the resulting data are elicited towards the interest of ecosystemic services indicators extracted from urban trees and forest, and urban parks lawns as elements of urban greenways connected to regional ecological corridors.

The results participate to urban public polities decision, providing quantitative supports that complete more contextual and socially turned arguments. Such indicators could provide, in this case, comparative elements among various contexts and public policies management decisions. One of the last steps of the experiment is to confront the knowledge build up from the ecosystemic services data to the knowledge and knowhow of local authorities agents and representatives to assure the interest of such indicators in urban greenways multifunctional setting.

*The composition of green infrastructure in socio-spatially differentiated urban settings

Ellen Banzhaf, Francisco de la Barrera, Sonia Reyes-Paecke

Environment quality has a strong impact on human quality of life. This study highlights the composition of green infrastructure in urban settings and its contribution to environmental quality and therefore, human quality of life. Three major sets of indicators can be used to estimate the environment quality. These indicators include the urban structure, green infrastructure and socio-spatial information (location, education and thereof derived income). In order to ascertain information for these components high resolution imagery and census data are used. Urban structural features are derived from an object-based classification scheme.

The novelty of this research is that instead of only focusing on the total green infrastructure of a municipality. Green infrastructure is investigated twofold: (1) focusing on vegetation cover, including any kind of vegetated elements: trees, shrub and lawn that are located in public or private spaces. (2) studying green spaces as part of the urban structure where a delimited share is destined to nature conservation and, at the same time, to offer recreational opportunities to citizens.

This study highlights green infrastructure at different scales (vegetation cover in total, amount and distribution of green spaces and vegetation cover on green spaces). Additionally, we investigate if vulnerable groups such as children and elderly people profit from neighboring green spaces.

This research is carried out at the very high statistical block scale. We describe the spatial distribution and amount of green infrastructure per inhabitant. As results are evaluated at such a detailed scale, the contribution of green infrastructure to environmental quality in different socio-spatial urban settings can be shown.

The study is performed in the Metropolitan Area of Santiago de Chile (MAS), a socio-spatially highly differentiated metropolis. By drawing on three socio-spatially differentiated municipalities within the MAS this study is able to gain an understanding of how the distribution of green infrastructure differs and how/whether it is related to the socio-spatial components of the selected municipalities Cerro Navia, La Florida and Vitacura.

The positive correlation between the income level of the population and the abundance and diversity of the vegetation has been demonstrated in other cities. This study shows how a high income level allows keeping an abundant vegetation cover that would not survive unattended in a semi-arid environment like MAS. Thus, the income level of the population allows the municipality to overcome the natural limits set by climate or soil conditions and creates a human-made habitat, very different from the wild ecosystem conditions surrounding the city. These densely vegetated areas present in high income areas (Vitacura and zones of La Florida) in contrast with the large amount of bare soil present in lower income areas.

*Socio-spatial distribution of outdoor airborne exposures as an indicator for environmental justice - the case study of Berlin

Annegret Kindler and Ulrich Franck

Over the last decade a growing number of investigations on environmental justice have shown the increasing scientific and societal relevance of relations between the social situation of population, environmental quality, and health including requirements to policy makers and planners. In our case study we understood environmental justice as the unequal social and spatial distribution of health relevant environmental burdens and resources causing unequal health risks of the affected population.

The spatial distribution of social parameters was used as a predictor of human exposure by outdoor airborne pollutants. It is an indicator of environmental injustice and allows analyzing correlations between environmental quality and social situation of the exposed population.

Particulate matter (PM10 - inhalable, PM2.5 - respirable) and nitrogen oxides (NOx, NO2) are two of the most important types of airborne pollutants in Germany.

Epidemiological studies found that these pollutants significantly increase morbidity and mortality by cardiovascular, respiratory and other diseases. Inner-urban differences of human exposure are often higher than mean differences between cities. Therefore it is necessary to investigate the inner-urban spatial distributions of human exposures. Additionally, the question arises if the social situation of population is also related to airborne outdoor exposures.

On the example of Berlin the spatial distribution of airborne exposures of PM2.5 and NO2 was determined for the 447 planning areas (PLAs) each characterized by about 7500 inhabitants, unique structure of buildings, big roads, and rather homogeneous social structure. In this study we also investigated the combined exposure by PM2.5 and NO2. Traffic densities were included into the assessment because both types of air pollutants are related to traffic.

PM10 and NOx concentrations, additional reference data for selected monitoring stations and for street sections were used to calculate the area weighted annual average values for all PLAs.

PM2.5 and NO2 air concentrations were determined from the PM10 and NOx values. Areas of main streets in the PLAs have been taken into account as additional traffic sources that contributes to pollutant concentrations. In order to investigate socio-spatial distribution of PM2.5 and NO2 at the PLA level the air pollution was statistically and spatially correlated with the development index of the Berlin Social Urban Development Monitoring. In addition, the number of people was determined exposed to different levels of air pollution in relation to PLA and social status.

The assessment of combined exposure by PM2.5 and NO2 shows increased frequencies of highly or very highly affected PLA within the low emission zone and adjoining PLA to the west, southwest and north. Air pollution decreases from the centre towards the outskirts of the city. Assessing the combined exposure, 15% of the PLA are lowly, 59% medium, 12% highly and 14% very highly polluted.

About 10% of Berlin’s population live in PLA with a very low or low development index and with very high or high air pollution levels and thus are discriminated twice. The lower the development index in a PLA, the higher is the share of population with high air pollution.

Strengthning of environmental justice due to national Sustainable Energy Autonomy (SEnA)

Volker Stelzer

The use of fossil and nuclear energy causes a wide range of problems related to the environment, health and quality of life. The use of fossil sources contributes to global warming and is thus responsible for rising sea levels and intensified storms, rainfalls, heat waves, dryness, and bush fires. In addition, it leads to the emission of human toxic substances, such as particles, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, mercury and others, which are responsible for pulmonary and heart diseases. Another problem is the destruction of landscape, nature, agricultural and urban areas due to the extraction of coal, natural gas and oil and accidents like that of “Exxon Valdez” or “Deepwater Horizon”. The use of nuclear material increases the amount of radioactivity released during extraction, energy production and accidents like “Chernobyl” and “Fukushima”. Moreover, the use of fossil and nuclear sources is very expensive when taken into account the damage to lives and the environment due to everyday emissions and accidents and, in the case of nuclear power, especially the public costs resulting from the high security level of nuclear facilities and transport of nuclear material, the development of special legislation, and public subsidies to insurances.

A path towards a more sustainable and environmentally just energy system is the use of sustainable local sources like solar, water, wind, geothermal, biomass and ocean energy. An indicator to measure to what extent a country could produce energy from own sustainable sources is the “Sustainable Energy Autono-my Ratio”, or SEnAR.

In order to determine the SEnAR , the country’s full “potential of energy that can be produced in a sustainable manner” – the SEnPo – must be identified. This includes all potential for generating electricity or heat from solar energy or biomass from waste, electricity from water, wind, deep geothermal or ocean energy, and heat from near-surface geothermal resources. The overall potential cannot be fully exploited due to sustainability restrictions such as the limited use of energy crops because of the negative effects of artificial fertilizers and pesticides in crop production and the competition between energy use and use for nutrition or material use for chemical and technical production. Another constraint is that land can usually only be used for one purpose. So, for example, the potential of generating energy from wind in urban areas is very limited. For the definition of what kind of energy production is sustainable or what not, the widespread system of the “Integrative Concept of Sustainable Development” is used.

To calculate the SEnAR, the final energy of all sectors of a country – private, commercial, industry and mobility – and all kinds of energy – power, heat, cooling, and traction – will be added to the national “energy consumption” – the EnCo. The ratio of the EnPo and the SEnPO are the “Sustainable Energy Autonomy Ratio”, or SEnAR.

First results of the calculation of the national SEnAR of Germany will be presented.

*An indicator concept for cumulative impacts on human health in the urban realm regarding environmental justice

Heike Köckler and Johannes Flacke

Human health in the urban realm is influenced by different pathogenetic and salutogenetic factors. In several studies single agents like NO2 and PM10 as well as noise or the effect of green space are analysed and relevant indicators have been identified. However, the cumulative impact of multiple factors has not been analysed sufficiently yet. Moreover, various studies related to the debate on health inequalities and environmental justice revealed, that both the distribution of pathogenetic and salutogenetic factors and their effects are spatially and socially unequally distributed. Deprived households are more often exposed and suffer often more from severe health impacts resulting from this exposure due to their increased vulnerability.

To address both above mentioned issues we present a conceptual approach for an indicator framework that allows to map spatially factors relevant for cumulative health impacts. The framework is based on the DPSEEA (Driver, Pressure, State, Exposure, Effect, Answer) model (Morris et al 2006). This model, widely used in public-health, is an enhancement of the well-known DPSIR-Framework from sustainability science. It is qualified to support decision making as it based on causal chains including answers, that describe suitable actions to address one of the identified links in the chain, either the driver, the pressure, the state, or the exposure. In line with Morris et al. (2006) we extend the model to multiple cause-effect chains that stand for the different pathogenetic and salutogenetic factors (Köckler and Flacke 2013). By including different spatial scales and GIS-based spatial analyses depending on the impact area of the various indicators considered our framework allows to map spatial health inequalities.

For the city of Dortmund, Germany we put a first approach of a multiple DPSEEA based set of indicators for discussion. In selected maps we show how this framework supports the identification of hot spots of cumulative impacts and health inequalities within urban areas. The paper ends with a discussion on how these kind of analyses can inform spatial decision making between public health and urban planning.