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Your Environment. Your Health.

Estimating the health and economic impacts of changes in local air quality

Environmental Health Economic Analysis Annotated Bibliography

Details

Research article Cost benefit analysis (CBA)
Authors
Carvour ML, Hughes AE, Fann N, Haley RW
Journal
American Journal of Public Health
Summary
This cost-benefit analysis demonstrates the benefits-mapping software, Environmental Benefits Mapping and Analysis Program-Community Edition (BenMAP-CE), to estimate the number of prevented deaths and their economic value resulting from reductions in daily ozone levels in in the Dallas–Fort Worth region of Texas, and how these estimates vary under two rollback scenarios. The authors found that estimates of avoidable premature deaths attributable to ozone air pollution between the two scenarios obtained by the incremental rollback method varied little by year, whereas those obtained by the rollback-to-a-standard method varied by year and were sensitive to the choice of ordinality and the use of preloaded or imported data. The authors concluded that results may be strongly influenced by analytic specifications and described several important considerations for future of BenMAP-CE users (e.g., grid selection, pollutant definitions, baseline and control scenario specifications, and concentration–response functions) to determine which analytic methods best match their study question.
Population
Population of about 6.3 million people (ages not specified)

Health Outcomes

  • Mortality (acute mortality)

Environmental Agents

List of Environmental Agents:

  • Air pollutants (ozone (O3))

Source of Environmental Agents: (Not available)

Economic Evaluation / Methods and Source

Type:

  • Cost benefit analysis (CBA)

Cost Measured:

  • Valuation of a preventable death using value of a statistical life estimate

Potential Cost Measures: (Not available)

Benefits Measures:

  • Short-term mortality reduction attributable to ozone abatement

Potential Benefits:

  • Mortality reduction

Location:

  • 10-county area of the Dallas–Fort Worth region of Texas that includes Dallas, Tarrant, Denton, Wise, Collin, Parker, Rockewall, Johnson, Ellis, and Kaufman counties

Models Used:

  • Environmental Benefits Mapping and Analysis Program-Community Edition (BenMAP-CE) (US EPA)

Methods Used:

  • The authors calculated the value of prevented acute mortality following simulated interventions to reduce ground-level ozone levels that were implemented in 2008, so the analysis calculated health impacts in 2008, 2010, and 2011. The authors – 1) used ArcMap 10.2 to create a Dallas-Fort Worth area grid that was input to BenMAP; 2) used preloaded and uploaded US Census and US EPA pollutant data for each of the three years with the BenMAP tool to calculate health impacts using four different short-term mortality health impact functions – all-cause shorter-term mortality and non-accidental short-term mortality; 3) generated economic valuation estimates with the preloaded BenMAP-CE Weibull-distributed value of a statistical life estimate that assigns a value of approximately $8 million (in 2010 dollars for this study) to each death attibutable to a specified air quality problem; and 4) used BenMAP-CE simulated roll-back calculations to estimate lives saved with reductions in air pollutants for each of the three years.

Sources Used:

  • BenMAP-CE preloaded 2008 pollutant concentrations for ground-level ozone collected daily at monitoring stations for the EPA's National Ambient Air Quality Standards (US EPA 2015) using the D8Hour Max metric which is constructed by selecting the highest of all running 8-hour averages of each day’s hourly ozone readings; downloaded daily D8HMax metric ozone data from Dallas-Fort Worth-area monitors for 2011 and 2013; BenMAP-CE preloaded 2010 county-level baseline mortality rates and 2010 US Census population data covering the Dallas-Fort Worth 10-county population of approximately 6.3 million people; four different short-term mortality health impact functions – all-cause shorter-term mortality (Bell et al., 2005; Levy, 2005) and non-accidental short-term mortality (Madrigann et al., 2015; Schwartz, 2005); additional sources cited in the publication

Economic Evaluation / Methods and Source

Citation:

  • Carvour ML, Hughes AE, Fann N, Haley RW. 2018. Estimating the health and economic impacts of changes in local air quality. American Journal of Public Health.
  • Pubmed
  • DOI

NIEHS Funding: (Not available)

Other Funding:

  • National Cancer Institute (R25CA057712)
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