• Ground Air Quality for Ankara, Turkey, Monitored from Space and City Mortality for the Interval 2009 – 2016

    Nikolay Takuchev, Georgi Nedelchev

    Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Physics, Agrarian Faculty, Trakia University, Campus, Stara Zagora, Bulgaria.


    Introduction: With an advancement of space technology, it is possible to monitor the quality of the ground air on large areas of the earth’s surface, in particular, tracking the average air quality over large cities with millions of inhabitants.

    Goal: Searching for an answer to the question: “Is it possible to monitor the dependence of mortality in large urban centers by the air quality in them through satellite monitoring?”

    Material and Methods: Statistics on annual mortality in major Turkish cities were derived from Turkey’s national statistics website. Data on 22 meteorological parameters and pollutant concentrations in the ground air for the Ankara area measured by satellite-based appliances were derived from a NASA site. The data were examined for the existence of statistically significant correlations between mortality rates in the city of Ankara and the meteorological parameters and concentrations of ground air pollutants.

    Results: The change in mortality from respiratory diseases in Ankara closely follows the change in atmospheric pressure over the years (correlation coefficient +0.966, significance level 0.001). The correlation coefficient of methane concentration with atmospheric pressure is +0.970, a significance level of 0.001, and the correlation coefficient of methane concentration with respiratory mortality in Ankara is +0.938, a significance level of 0.01. Methane concentration has a statistically significant correlation coefficient also with the mortality from neoplasms (0.768, statistically significant for level 0.05), cardiovascular diseases (0.861, statistically significant for level 0.05), neoplasms (0.772, statistically significant for level 0.05), and diseases of the nervous system and sensory organs (0.827, statistically significant for level 0.05). Mortality in Ankara from cardiovascular diseases also has a large correlation coefficient (+0.941, significance level 0.01) with the parameter uv aerosol index, characterizing the presence of aerosols in the ground air. Statistically significant correlation coefficients of the mortality in Ankara with air quality parameters over the city measured by satellites were found for four out of six groups of causes of death – respiratory diseases, cardiovascular diseases, neoplasms, and diseases of the nervous system and sensory organs.

    Discussion: It turned out that the air pollutant, whose concentration correlates most with atmospheric pressure and mortality in Ankara, is methane. The liquid aerosol with dissolved NO2 probably contributes to the mortality in Ankara also.

    for the type of aerosol can be judged by the correlation coefficients of the index with the concentrations of other air pollutants.

    Keywords: Urban Air Pollution, Environmental monitoring from Space, Mortality, Ankara, Methane, UV Aerosol Index.

    Pages: 205 – 215 | Full PDF Paper