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Available online 19 January 2013 Publication year: 2013Source:Social Science & Medicine This paper explores whether the health risks related to air pollution and temperature extremes are spatially and socioeconomically differentiated within three Latin American cities: Bogota, Colombia, Mexico City, Mexico, and Santiago, Chile. Based on a theoretical review of three relevant approaches to risk analysis (risk society, environmental justice, and urban vulnerability as impact), we hypothesize that health risks from exposure to air pollution and temperature in these cities do not necessarily depend on socio-economic inequalities. To test this hypothesis, we gathered, validated, and analyzed temperature, air pollution, mortality and socioeconomic vulnerability data from the three study cities. Our results show the association between air pollution levels and socioeconomic vulnerabilities did not always correlate within the study cities. Furthermore, the spatial differences in socioeconomic vulnerabilities within cities do not necessarily correspond with the spatial distribution of health impacts.
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