Population and Environment

, Volume 27, Issue 1, pp 63–87 | Cite as

Estimating Traffic Emissions Using Demographic and Socio-Economic Variables in 18 Chilean Urban Areas

  • Roberto M. Corvalán
  • Mauricio Osses
  • Cristian M. Urrutia
  • Patricio A. González


A macro-scale methodology for vehicle emissions estimation is described. The methodology is based on both correlations between activity level and PM, CO, THC and NO x vehicle emissions and relationships between demographic and socio-economic variables and transportation activity level. First, pollutant emissions were correlated with transportation activity, expressed as vehicle-km/year, using existing data collected from mobile sources emission inventories in nine urban cities of Chile. Second, demographic and socio-economic variables were pre-selected from those that could intuitively be correlated with vehicle activity level and considering the data availability. Using the individual R 2 correlation coefficient as variable selection criterion, population, the number of vehicles, fuel consumption, gross domestic product, average family incomes and road kilometers were finally chosen. A different set of explicative variables was considered for different vehicle categories, based on the selection criterion above mentioned. Then, correlation functions between these variables and transport activity were obtained by non-linear Gauss–Newton least square method. This methodology was applied to eighteen provinces of the country obtaining total annual emission for mobile sources, divided into six main vehicles categories.

Key words

traffic emissions demography and environment socio-economic factors and environment atmospheric pollutants 



The authors wish to acknowledge the support provided by the National Environmental Commission, Metropolitan Region Unit, CONAMA-RM, the governmental agency that funded the studies whose results were used in this investigation. Acknowledgment are also extended to the Governmental Transport Planning Bureau, SECTRA, for preliminary data concerning emission and activity level modeled for the four cities considered in the verification of the methodology presented on this paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roberto M. Corvalán
    • 1
  • Mauricio Osses
    • 1
  • Cristian M. Urrutia
    • 1
  • Patricio A. González
    • 1
  1. 1.Mechanical Engineering DepartmentUniversity of ChileSantiagoChile

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