Predicting residential ozone deficits from nearby traffic

Sci Total Environ. 2006 Jun 15;363(1-3):166-74. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2005.06.028. Epub 2005 Aug 10.


Oxides of nitrogen in fresh traffic exhaust are known to scavenge ambient ozone. However, there has only been little study of local variation in ozone resulting from variation in vehicular traffic patterns within communities. Homes of 78 children were selected from a sample of participants in 3 communities in the southern California Children's Health Study. Twenty-four hour ozone measurements were made simultaneously at a home and at a community central site monitor on two occasions between February and November 1994. Homes were geo-coded, and local residential nitrogen oxides (NOx) above regional background due to nearby traffic at each participant's home were estimated using a line source dispersion model. Measured home ozone declined in a predictable manner as modeled residential NOx increased. NOx modeled from local traffic near homes accounted for variation in ozone concentrations of as much as 17 parts per billion. We conclude that residential ozone concentrations may be over- or underestimated by measurements at a community monitor, depending on the variation in local traffic in the community. These findings may have implications for studies of health effects of traffic-related pollutants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Air Pollutants / analysis*
  • California
  • Child
  • Environmental Monitoring
  • Forecasting
  • Housing
  • Humans
  • Nitrogen Dioxide / analysis*
  • Oxidants, Photochemical / analysis
  • Ozone / analysis*
  • Residence Characteristics
  • Urban Health*
  • Vehicle Emissions / analysis*


  • Air Pollutants
  • Oxidants, Photochemical
  • Vehicle Emissions
  • Ozone
  • Nitrogen Dioxide