Methodological approach to determine of small spatial units in a highly complex terrain in atmospheric pollution research: the case of Zasavje region in Slovenia

Andreja Kukec, Marija Z. Boznar, Primoz Mlakar, Bostjan Grasic, Andrej Herakovic, Vesna Zadnik, Lijana Zaletel-Kragelj, Jerneja Farkas, Ivan Erzen
  • Andreja Kukec
    Public Health Centre, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • Marija Z. Boznar
    MEIS Environmental Consulting, Smarje-Sap, Slovenia
  • Primoz Mlakar
    MEIS Environmental Consulting, Smarje-Sap, Slovenia
  • Bostjan Grasic
    MEIS Environmental Consulting, Smarje-Sap, Slovenia
  • Andrej Herakovic
    Municipality of Skocjan, Skocjan, Slovenia
  • Vesna Zadnik
    Epidemiology and Cancer Register, Institute of Oncology, Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • Lijana Zaletel-Kragelj
    Public Health Centre, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • Jerneja Farkas
    Public Health Centre, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana; University Clinic of Respiratory and Allergic Diseases Golnik, Golnik, Slovenia
  • Ivan Erzen
    Public Health Centre, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana; National Institute of Public Health of Slovenia, Ljubljana, Slovenia | ivan.erzen@mf.uni-lj.si

Abstract

The study of atmospheric air pollution research in complex terrains is challenged by the lack of appropriate methodology supporting the analysis of the spatial relationship between phenomena affected by a multitude of factors. The key is optimal design of a meaningful approach based on small spatial units of observation. The Zasavje region, Slovenia, was chosen as study area with the main objective to investigate in practice the role of such units in a test environment. The process consisted of three steps: modelling of pollution in the atmosphere with dispersion models, transfer of the results to geographical information system software, and then moving on to final determination of the function of small spatial units. A methodology capable of designing useful units for atmospheric air pollution research in highly complex terrains was created, and the results were deemed useful in offering starting points for further research in the field of geospatial health.

Keywords

atmospheric air pollution research, highly complex terrain, dispersion models, geographical information systems, small area units, Slovenia.

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Submitted: 2014-12-10 17:36:08
Published: 2014-05-01 00:00:00
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Copyright (c) 2014 Andreja Kukec, Marija Z. Boznar, Primoz Mlakar, Bostjan Grasic, Andrej Herakovic, Vesna Zadnik, Lijana Zaletel-Kragelj, Jerneja Farkas, Ivan Erzen

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