Spatio-temporal Analysis of Noise Pollution near Boston Logan Airport: Who Carries the Cost?

Urban Studies, January 2010, vol. 47 no. 1, pp. 169-182

Yelena Ogneva-Himmelberger and Brian Cooperman

“Airports are often located near densely populated residential areas, affecting a large number of people. Thus, knowing socio-demographic characteristics of the noise-affected areas is important for the development of policies on noise control and abatement. This study proposes a new methodology that combines airport noise models with spatial statistics and geographical information systems to identify spatial clusters of socio-demographic characteristics in relationship to the noise level. Statistically significant ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ socio-demographic clusters represent spatial concentrations of certain social groups, corresponding to various levels of vulnerability to environmental impacts. Results show that the population ‘paying’ for the cost of noise from Logan International Airport in Boston, USA, is highly vulnerable as there are more minority and lower-income populations, and lower house prices in the noise-affected areas. These results should draw the attention of policy-makers and the public as policies for noise abatement are being developed.”

A Spatial Analysis of the December 26th, 2004 Tsunami-induced Damages: Lessons Learned for a Better Risk Assessment Integrating Buildings Vulnerability

Applied Geography, In Press, Corrected Proof, Available online 16 September 2010

Frédéric Leone, Franck Lavigne, Raphaël Paris, Jean-Charles Denain, Freddy Vinet

“The December 26th tsunami of 2004 caused an unprecedented disaster in the Indian Ocean. In Sumatra, a third of the Banda Aceh area was destroyed and 70,000 people died. The Tsunarisque Program – a French–Indonesian research project – brings new considerations to tsunami dynamics and damage intensity in this urban area: An original method of damage spatial analysis is based on field surveys, photo interpretations and GIS. The first result is a very accurate cartography of the tsunami breaking zone that is shown by a steep drop in the damaging gradient around 2.7 km from the coast. The second is a new “macro-tsunamic” intensity scale based on special typologies of buildings and damages. This analysis is complemented by fragility curves that give the statistical relationships between mean damage intensities and wave heights. These results will allow developing application in tsunami potential losses modelling.

“Research highlights

  • Damage analysis makes it possible to reconstruct spatial components of this tsunami.
  • Damages interpolation confirms a tsunami breaking zone 2.7 km inland.
  • Fragility curves make it possible to estimate the cost of direct losses related to the buildings damages.
  • Buildings and damage typologies can be used for other tsunamis in order to apply the same method.”

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