Exploring spatial distribution of pollen allergenic risk zones in urban China

Junfeng Xu, Zhanqing Cai, Tiantian Wang, Guang Liu, Peng Tang, Xinyue Ye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The growth of urban areas and the impact of urban ecosystems on public health and urban sustainability have been leading issues of both academic and public interest. More than 100 million Chinese people suffer from pollen allergy. Pollen allergy induces bronchitis, bronchial asthma, pulmonary heart disease, and may even be life-threatening. Thus, pollen allergies greatly affect the daily life of individuals. High-resolution WorldView-2 remote sensing data and vegetation distribution features were used to detect the dominant tree species in the study area and obtain canopy distribution information on different tree species. In this way, the sources of pollen from different tree species were identified. Using remote sensing technology, the overall accuracy of tree species recognition for the study area exceeds 86%. Most plants in the study area flower during the spring, so the pollen allergenic risk zones are extensive during spring and sparse in fall. Based on the spatial ranges of pollen dispersal during different seasons, areas were identified that might contain pollen concentrations detrimental to pollen-sensitive individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number978
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number10
StatePublished - Sep 28 2016
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


  • Allergenic risk zones
  • Pollen allergy
  • Spatial distribution
  • Tree species
  • Urban sustainability


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