Oct 11, 2021
Erica Spotswood and a team of scientists published pioneering research in Nature Sustainability, finding that COVID-19 tracks neighborhood greenness in the US, exacerbating existing inequity. The study, titled “Nature inequity and higher COVID-19 case rates in less green neighbourhoods in the United States,” demonstrates a fundamental pattern that low-income and majority-minority communities systematically have less access to nature in urban areas across the U.S. What’s more, these communities experiencing nature inequity are the same communities hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The analysis digs deeper into the independent relationship between COVID-19 rates and nature, even after controlling for race, income, and a host of other factors, and finds that there is a clear link: communities most impacted by COVID-19 also have the least nature nearby. These results make a clear case for prioritizing urban greening as a necessary component to cities’ strategies for supporting human health, promoting environmental justice, and building community resilience to future health crises.
For more information contact Erica Spotswood, [email protected]
Follow this link to download the article.
Also note the story on local news covering the release of this important article.
Robert McDonald, The Nature Conservancy
Erin Beller, Google
Deborah Balk, CUNY Institute of Demographic Research
Timon McPhearson, The New School
Ming Kuo, University of Illinois
Programs and Focus Areas:
Resilient Landscapes Program
Urban Nature Lab