Journal Article

Airports, Air Pollution, and Contemporaneous Health

Wolfram Schlenker and W. Reed Walker

in The Review of Economic Studies

Volume 83, issue 2, pages 768-809
Published in print April 2016 | ISSN: 0034-6527
Published online October 2015 | e-ISSN: 1467-937X | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/restud/rdv043
Airports, Air Pollution, and Contemporaneous Health

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Environmental Economics
  • Demographic Economics
  • Single Equation Models; Single Variables

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

We link daily air pollution exposure to measures of contemporaneous health for communities surrounding the twelve largest airports in California. These airports are some of the largest sources of air pollution in the US, and they experience large changes in daily air pollution emissions depending on the amount of time planes spend idling on the tarmac. Excess airplane idling, measured as residual daily taxi time, is due to network delays originating in the Eastern US. This idiosyncratic variation in daily airplane taxi time significantly impacts the health of local residents, largely driven by increased levels of carbon monoxide (CO) exposure. We use this variation in daily airport congestion to estimate the population dose-response of health outcomes to daily CO exposure, examining hospitalization rates for asthma, respiratory, and heart-related emergency room admissions. A one standard deviation increase in daily pollution levels leads to an additional $540 thousand in hospitalization costs for respiratory and heart-related admissions for the 6 million individuals living within 10 km (6.2 miles) of the airports in California. These health effects occur at levels of CO exposure far below existing Environmental Protection Agency mandates, and our results suggest there may be sizable morbidity benefits from lowering the existing CO standard.

Keywords: Health effects of pollution; Airport congestion; Network delays; Instrumental variables; Q53; J1; C26

Journal Article.  23903 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Environmental Economics ; Demographic Economics ; Single Equation Models; Single Variables

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content. subscribe or login to access all content.