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Year: 2020

How many global deaths will COVID-19 cause? In a recently published paper (Autumn 2020 issue of The Edinburgh Geologist, pp9-16) Professor Roy Thompson shows how he applied a geomathematical technique to forecasting the likely number of deaths from COVID-19. This tried and tested approach has been extensively used previously with great success by energy-modellers and […]

Summary A positive outcome of the Coronavirus lockdown is that it created a grand “natural experiment”. This fortuitous circumstance can be used to gain a deeper understanding of the impacts of human actions on the environment. A good example is air pollution. When governments all around the world restricted movements to help stem the rapid […]

Where art and science collide: The Space and Satellites Artist Residency exhibition at Edinburgh’s Inspace   Full text of article in The Scotsman, 8th August 2020   Scotsman Article NB. The air quality data described in the article derives from The Scottish Air Quality Database, a project that Ricardo delivers on behalf of the Scottish […]

Summary The COVID-19 pandemic has strongly influenced almost every aspect of daily life, including road traffic patterns and transportation systems. Daily travel behaviour in cities all across thje world has been entirely reshaped due to COVID-19. In Scotland traffic volume started to decline well ahead of the main stay-at-home order of March 23. By the […]

Air pollution plunges by up to 80% in Scotland’s city centres during the Covid pandemic   Summary During the COVID-19 lockdown huge reductions in nitrogen oxide pollutants (up to 80% for NO, 66% for NO2) took place across Scotland’s cities and towns. Particularly pronounced declines are found for sites normally dense with road traffic. In […]

Traffic flow in Edinburgh Summary Traffic flow in Edinburgh is slowly rising again. Automated monitoring of movement along the City Bypass is providing an excellent time-series for calibrating the improvement in air pollution during the Covid lockdown. Data from Transport Scotland’s Automatic Traffic Counter. Note the pronounced weekend effect. Traffic volume was already well down […]

St John’s Road pollution Jan to April 2020: removing local meteorological effects.   First attempt at ‘deweathering‘ St John’s Road pollution Jan to April 2020, i.e removing local meteorological effects. Wind speed and direction plus temporal effects (daily, weekday, seasonal cycles) can account for 64% of the variation. The 3D plot aims to improve on […]

Environmental impact of the Covid19 lockdown on air pollution – a short video Summary    Video produced as part of the EVERYONE project charting NO2 pollution across Scotland during the Covid19 lockdown. The many features to be seen in the video are caused by a combination of anthropogenic emissions, meterorlogical events and the COVID-19 outbreak. […]

Webinar: Environmental impact of the Covid19 lockdown and air pollution in Edinburgh Summary The EVERYONE project considers the environmental impact of the Covid19 lockdown on Edinburgh Webinar In the webinar  curator Dr Stacey Hunter and weaver Ben Hymers are  joined by their scientific collaborator Professor Roy Thompson to talk through their data-derived tapestry project ‘EVERYONE’. […]

The St. John’s Road air pollution data has been turned into a video and set to the music of Tchaikovsky’s Waltz Of The Flowers   As part of the EVERYONE project coordinated by Stacey Hunter  the St John’s Road air pollution data, described on my previous blog pages, has been incorporated into a video (1:38 […]


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