Despite efforts to improve air quality over the past few decades, air pollution levels in the UK remain high enough to have significant impacts on the natural environment and on human health.
In 2016, in order to monitor the effects, an Air Quality Garden was established in the Sheffield Botanical Gardens, the first in the UK. The research project was led by Dr Maria Val Martin of the University of Sheffield, in collaboration with the universities of Leeds and York.
Involving children from local schools, it was planted with species sensitive to ozone pollution, including clover, lettuce, wheat and snap beans. Visible signs of damage, including leaf discolouration, revealed the impact of the pollution present in the air.
In this online talk, Dr Martin will report on the findings from the Air Quality Garden and plans for future monitoring, and how these can be used to raise public awareness and change behaviour to improve the air we breathe.
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- Friends of the Botanical Gardens