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Satellite Images Ranks Europe's Greenest (and Not so Green) Cities

Satellite Images Ranks Europe's Greenest (and Not so Green) Cities

With a growing global trend of rural to urban migration, a focus on an understanding of parks, gardens and general green space in city centers is more important than ever. While a move to an urban center can offer improved access to employment, schooling, healthcare and cultural opportunities, it can come at a cost of increased stress and noise and decreased access to open space, fresh air and nature. For urban and forestry researcher Phillipp Gärtner, this raised the question of which European capital cities have the greenest space.

Courtesy of Philipp Gärtner

Using a method that processes satellite imagery and detects pixel types, Gärtner has generated the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) for 43 of Europe’s capital cities. The NDVI analyses remote sensing measurements to determine whether a target area contains live vegetation or not. For consistency, the area analyzed is a 5-mile radius circle around each city's official city center.

The results tend to be weighted towards the smaller capitals as they generally have less metropolitan area. Coastal cities feature on the low end of the scale due to the non-plantable area so Gärtner has compiled a list of both cities with a population of above two million and the greenest seaside capital.

Courtesy of Philipp Gärtner

Here are the rankings from most green to least green:

Sarajevo - 0.6778
Vaduz - 0.6738
Ljubljana - 0.6114
Andorra La Vella - 0.6074
Bern - 0.5996
Luxembourg - 0.5801
Vilnius - 0.5137
Tallin - 0.459
Monaco - 0.4395
Oslo - 0.4356
Riga - 0.4238
Zagreb - 0.4121
Bratislava - 0.4043
Chisinau - 0.3926
Kiev - 0.3887
Stockholm - 0.3777
Helsinki - 0.3769
Prague - 0.3692
Warsaw - 0.3653
Pristina - 0.3535
Sofia - 0.3379
Skopje - 0.3105
Belgrade - 0.295
Dublin - 0.291
Tirana - 0.2793
Minsk - 0.2718
Copenhagen - 0.2637
Reykjavik - 0.2637
Berlin - 0.2519
Bucharest - 0.2519
Podgorica - 0.2363
Amsterdam - 0.2285
Brussels - 0.1973
Vienna - 0.1738
Rome - 0.1699
Madrid - 0.1543
Moscow - 0.1426
London - 0.1348
Lisbon - 0.127
Paris - 0.1191
Valetta - 0.0957
Athens - 0.0879

The full analysis can be found here.

About this author
Cite: Tessa Forde. "Satellite Images Ranks Europe's Greenest (and Not so Green) Cities" 20 Nov 2017. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/883707/satellite-images-ranks-europes-greenest-and-not-so-green-cities> ISSN 0719-8884
Courtesy of Philipp Gärtner


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