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Your Environment. Your Health.

Valuing environmental health for informed policy-making

Environmental Health Economic Analysis Annotated Bibliography


Research Article Cost analysis (CA)
Maca V, Melichar J, Scasny M, Kohlova MB
Reviews on Environmetal Health
This cost analysis examined the projected external costs on future coal mining and use of extracted coal in electricity and heat generation in the Czech Republic during 2015-2050 to inform policy decisions. The total external costs imposed on human health ranged from €0.5 billion to €11 billion among the four policy scenarios tested. This result suggests the choice from a policy-making perspective has a huge impact, with the ‘narrowly focused’ scenario ignoring up to 90% of impacts. The authors found that more than half of the estimated impacts are borne by Central European populations outside the Czech Republic and another third by populations in European countries beyond Central Europe. They conclude that external cost assessment should take account of impacts occurring beyond country borders.
Populations including infants, children, adults, and elderly (65+ years)

Health Outcomes

  • Mortality (post-neonatal infant mortality, adult mortality)
  • Respiratory outcomes (chronic bronchitis, bronchitis in children, hospital admissions for respiratory diseases)
  • Cardiovascular outcomes (hospitalizations for cardiovascular diseases)
  • Morbidity (restricted activity days, work days lost, minor restricted activity dates, annoyance from noise)

Environmental Agents

List of Environmental Agents:

  • Air pollutants (particulate matter (PM2.5/fine), particulate matter (PM10), ozone (O3))

Source of Environmental Agents:

  • Future coal mining and use of coal in electricity and heat generation

Economic Evaluation / Methods and Source


  • Cost analysis (CA)

Cost Measured:

  • Willingness to pay to avoid shortened life expectancy
  • Costs of restricted activity days, work days lost, minor restricted activity days

Potential Cost Measures: (Not available)

Benefits Measures: (Not available)

Potential Benefits: (Not available)


  • Czech Republic and other European Union countries

Models Used:

  • ExternE, an impact-pathway methodology

Methods Used:

  • This study examined external costs of coal mining and subsequent use of extracted coal for electricity and heat generation in the Czech Republic and other European countries. The authors: — 1) used the impact-pathway methodology called ExternE for a bottom-up environmental health impact assessment of emissions of airborne pollution and noise from coal mining and from coal-fired power plants; 2) estimated airborne and noise emissions from coal mining using local scale dispersion models; 3) used a regional scale dispersion model of airborne emissions from coal burning in coal-fired heating and power plants; 4) obtained concentration-response functions from other studies for health effects and annoyance from noise exposure; 5) collected background data (e.g., population age distribution, mortality and morbidity incidences) from multiple data sources that were included in the EcoSenseWeb model; 6) monetized impacts using values for health endpoints transferred from EU-wide unit values from other studies; 7) calculated results for four scenarios including impacts on Czech Republic nationals only, Czechs and neighboring countries, EU-wide population, and worldwide; and 8) adjusted EU-wide monetary values to be country-specific based on relative per capita gross domestic product at purchasing power.

Sources Used:

  • A subset of concentration-response functions from the Health Risks of Air Pollution in Europe (HRAPIE) project (WHO, 2015); exposure-response functions for annoyance from noise (Miedema et al., 2004); Monetary and non-monetary measures of health benefits from exposure reduction (Scasny and Maca, 2016); Cost-benefit analysis of final policy scenarios for the EU Clearn Air Package (Holland, 2014); Willingness to pay values from earlier multi-country valuation studies (Desaigues et al., 2011; Ready et al., 2004); additional sources cited in the publication

Economic Evaluation / Methods and Source


  • Maca V, Melichar J, Scasny M, Kohlova MB. 2017. Valuing environmental health for informed policy-making. Reviews on Environmetal Health.
  • Pubmed
  • DOI

NIEHS Funding:

  • R13ES026036

Other Funding:

  • Manuscript preparation was supported by PRVOUK-PO2 programme of Charles University
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