Emission of biogenic volatile organic compounds from trees along streets and in urban parks in Tokyo, Japan

Sou N. Matsunaga*, Kojiro Shimada, Tatsuhiko Masuda, Junya Hoshi, Sumito Sato, Hiroki Nagashima, Hiroyuki Ueno

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Ozone concentration in Tokyo Metropolitan area is one of the most serious issues of the local air quality. Tropospheric ozone is formed by radical reaction including volatile organic compound (VOC) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). Reduction of the emission of reactive VOC is a key to reducing ozone concentrations. VOC is emitted from anthropogenic sources and also from vegetation (biogenic VOC or BVOC). BVOC also forms ozone through NOx and radical reactions. Especially, in urban area, the BVOC is emitted into the atmosphere with high NOx concentration. Therefore, trees bordering streets and green spaces in urban area may contribute to tropospheric ozone. On the other hand, not all trees emit BVOC which will produce ozone locally. In this study, BVOC emissions have been investigated (terpenoids: isoprene, monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes) for 29 tree species. Eleven in the 29 species were tree species that did not emit BVOCs. Three in 12 cultivars for future planting (25 %) were found to emit no terpenoid BVOCs. Eight in 17 commonly planted trees (47%) were found to emit no terpenoid BVOC. Lower-emitting species have many advantages for urban planting. Therefore, further investigation is required to find the species which do not emit terpenoid BVOC. Emission of reactive BVOC should be added into guideline for the urban planting to prevent the creation of sources of ozone. It is desirable that species with no reactive BVOC emission are planted along urban streets and green areas in urban areas, such as Tokyo.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-32
Number of pages4
JournalAsian Journal of Atmospheric Environment
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Biogenic volatile organic compound
  • Oxidant formation
  • Photochemical reaction
  • Street lining trees
  • Urban vegetation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atmospheric Science


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