Dr. Jelle Hofman, ENdEMIC
In contemporary cities, the appearance of vegetation exerts many so-called ecosystem services. Next to carbon sequestration, micro-climate regulation, noise reduction, rainwater drainage, psychological and recreational values, a significant amount of research has focused on the air pollution mitigation potential of urban vegetation. But what if we would be able to use the particle-capture efficiency of urban tree leaves to say something about atmospheric pollutant levels? Saturation Isothermal Remanent Magnetisation of leaf-deposited particles can be evaluated for monitoring purposes, at both spatial and temporal resolutions. Especially in heterogeneous urban environments, where traditional telemetric monitoring networks are limited in terms of spatial resolution, biomagnetic monitoring of urban trees might serve as a novel ecosystem service, enabling the collection of high-resolution air quality information.