FEMALE_1: Check out this map of Helsinki.
FEMALE_1: The grey shaded area is home to
FEMALE_1: the city's more economically deprived neighborhoods.
FEMALE_1: Now, here's Paris and London and Manchester, same story.
FEMALE_1: A trio of economists set out to test their theory.
FEMALE_1: Why do so many cities have poor east sides?
FEMALE_1: [MUSIC] These researchers modeled
FEMALE_1: 70 English cities as they would have existed in 1880,
FEMALE_1: during the height of the industrial revolution.
FEMALE_1: To build their model of each city,
FEMALE_1: they started with detailed maps made by
FEMALE_1: Victorian-era surveyors who were very thorough.
FEMALE_1: The economists used those maps to
FEMALE_1: locate each industrial chimney within a given city.
FEMALE_1: Once they had located all of these chimneys,
FEMALE_1: 5,000 of them in all,
FEMALE_1: they used a cutting-edge
FEMALE_1: atmospheric dispersion modeling system
FEMALE_1: to tell them literally which way the wind was
FEMALE_1: blowing in 1880 and how the smoke from
FEMALE_1: those chimneys would be
FEMALE_1: dispersed throughout a given city.
FEMALE_1: [MUSIC] The pollution from those chimneys was no joke.
FEMALE_1: There were hundreds of industrial chimneys in a city like
FEMALE_1: Manchester pumping black coal smoke into the air.
FEMALE_1: An observer at the time compared
FEMALE_1: Manchester to an active volcano.
FEMALE_1: The researchers found a strong correlation
FEMALE_1: between air pollution
FEMALE_1: and low-skilled workers in a given neighborhood in 1881.
FEMALE_1: Those who could afford it moved away from the sootiest,
FEMALE_1: most polluted neighborhoods leaving
FEMALE_1: behind a lower-income population.
FEMALE_1: But why were
FEMALE_1: those polluted neighborhoods always in the east?
FEMALE_1: That's because the middle latitudes,
FEMALE_1: where most cities are located,
FEMALE_1: have westerly prevailing winds,
FEMALE_1: meaning they blow to the east
FEMALE_1: carrying that air pollution with them.
FEMALE_1: The economists also looked at whether the pattern of
FEMALE_1: poor east sides existed before the Industrial Revolution.
FEMALE_1: When they looked at the neighborhood makeup for
FEMALE_1: these same cities before the rise in coal use,
FEMALE_1: the pattern of poor east sides wasn't there.
FEMALE_1: They also ran the models to see what happened after
FEMALE_1: the 1968 passage of England's Clean Air Act.
FEMALE_1: For the most part, the effect
FEMALE_1: eased up as the pollution did,
FEMALE_1: except in areas where it had been really polluted.
FEMALE_1: Once pollution levels passed a certain tipping point,
FEMALE_1: the neighborhood tended to remain
FEMALE_1: deprived even after pollution declined.
FEMALE_1: This isn't to say that this is the one theory to
FEMALE_1: rule them all when it comes
FEMALE_1: to how cities grow and develop,
FEMALE_1: but if you're looking at
FEMALE_1: the socio-economic distribution of
FEMALE_1: a formerly industrial city in the middle latitudes,
FEMALE_1: this might be your answer.
MALE_1: Slag heaps and smoke.
MALE_1: Soot upon the fields.
MALE_1: Forests of chimney stacks.
MALE_1: In 150 years, we have changed the face of Britain.
MALE_1: We have changed it forever.
FEMALE_1: The others point out that their results
FEMALE_1: are helpful to keep in mind for
FEMALE_1: policy-makers and planners in
FEMALE_1: rapidly developing places like China.
FEMALE_1: As their study shows,
FEMALE_1: even a temporary environmental disadvantage can have
FEMALE_1: lasting effects on a neighborhood
FEMALE_1: and the people who live there.
FEMALE_1: For you and me, it's just cool to know
FEMALE_1: that part of the reason things are the way they are
FEMALE_1: today can be chalked up to something as seemingly
FEMALE_1: unrelated as which way the wind
FEMALE_1: was blowing over 100 years ago.
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