Smog-Reducing Buildings Aim to Combat Pollution Levels
Air pollution is currently the world's largest single environmental health risk, according to the World Health Organization and a recent news release.
In 2013, the Manuel Gea González Hospital in Mexico City unveiled a façade made out of titanium dioxide coating designed specifically to reduce smog. The façade is made of modules called prosolve370e and designed by the Berlin-based Elegant Embellishments. The titanium dioxide is a pollution-fighting technology that is activated by ambient daylight as described on the product's website.
Hugo Destaillats, staff scientist with the Environmental Energy Technologies Division at the Lawrence Berkeley Lab in Berkeley, California, has done similar research on a laboratory scale and verified that titanium dioxide is effective in removing pollution.
"There are many studies by numerous groups around the world that also showed the same positive performance," Destaillats said.
In 2015, another building designed to fight pollution will be unveiled, this time in Milan, Italy, as part of the 2015 Milan Expo. Designed by the Italian architectural firm Nemesi & Partners, the "Palazzo Italia" encompasses 13,275 square meters (142,890 square feet) and six floors.