GoGreenRoutes Environmental Quality Indicators
Environmental quality, nature-based solutions and well-being
Urbanisation coupled with changing lifestyle has rendered human life in cities with chronic stress, inadequate physical activity, and enhanced exposure to anthropogenic environmental hazards.
Urban green spaces, such as parks, playgrounds and urban forests promote mental and physical health while attenuating rates of morbidity and mortality in urban residents through psychological relaxation, stress reduction, social cohesion, enhanced physical activity, and other positive effects.
Our experience of the built environment is significantly altered by the quality of our outdoor environments. The corresponding state of the environment is therefore key to optimally derive health benefits from urban nature. Urban greenery in the form of green infrastructure and NATURE-BASED SOLUTIONS play a significant role in improving the environmental quality and reducing our exposure to air pollutants, noise, and excessive heat.
Nature-based solutions and green infrastructure are proving effective in mitigating urban environmental hazards. Yet, implementing and embedding better into our urban green spaces offers a unique opportunity of improving the quality of life in cities even more.
Approach and Environmental Quality Indicator Theoretical Framework
GoGreenRoutes focuses on the design, implementation and assessment of nature-based solutions, which offer and improve the co-benefits of urban greenery for the quality of the urban environment and multidimensional health (TERMED 360-HEALTH). The project takes a threefold conceptual approach 'Capture', 'Develop' and 'Apply' as shown in the figure below.
Through this approach, a range of socio-environmental challenges unique to the GoGreenRoutes "Cultivating Cities" will be identified. These will facilitate the development of novel EQ Indicators to inform the design and evaluate the performance of the envisaged green routes in each of the cities.
Environmental Quality Indicators applications
The EQ indicators will inform to the design and engineering of novel nature-based interventions (e.g. design improvements for new and existing nature-based solutions along green routes/spaces) in our European partner cities.
In parallel to accessing existing open-sourced data, extensive local monitoring campaigns (fixed and mobile) will be implemented and analysed in each of the “Cultivating Cities” to provide a baseline assessment of existing green routes, and to quantify the impact of these green interventions.
This will validate the EQ indicators and define how they can guide the creation of more connected and sustainable urban green spaces in other cities.