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Inverse associations between neighborhood socioeconomic factors and green structure in urban and suburban municipalities of Stockholm County

Persson, Åsa, Eriksson, Charlotta, Lõhmus, Mare
Landscape and urban planning 2018 v.179 pp. 103-106
income, normalized difference vegetation index, socioeconomic factors, vegetation, Europe
Stockholm is one of the greenest capitals in Europe, however, there is a concern that future densification may lead to a decrease in the physical space available for green structure (includes all kinds of vegetation). International evidence suggests that the health benefits of green structure may be strongest among the lowest socioeconomic groups whereas those same groups often experience exposure to less or lower quality green structure. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the low-income areas in Stockholm County experience less greenness; and if the trends in greenness development over years differ between areas. We found that average neighborhood values of Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) – an estimate of amount of vegetation – increased significantly in all area types (“urban”, “sub-urban”, “rural”) between 1990 and 2015; however, the direction of the associations between neighborhood annual income and NDVI differed between area types.