Climate change air toxic co-reduction in the context of macroeconomic modelling

Douglas Crawford-Brown, Pi Cheng Chen, Hsiu Ching Shi, Chia Wei Chao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This paper examines the health implications of global PM reduction accompanying greenhouse gas emissions reductions in the 180 national economies of the global macroeconomy. A human health effects module based on empirical data on GHG emissions, PM emissions, background PM concentrations, source apportionment and human health risk coefficients is used to estimate reductions in morbidity and mortality from PM exposures globally as co-reduction of GHG reductions. These results are compared against the "fuzzy bright line" that often underlies regulatory decisions for environmental toxics, and demonstrate that the risk reduction through PM reduction would usually be considered justified in traditional risk-based decisions for environmental toxics. It is shown that this risk reduction can be on the order of more than 4×10-3 excess lifetime mortality risk, with global annual cost savings of slightly more than $10B, when uniform GHG reduction measures across all sectors of the economy form the basis for climate policy ($2.2B if only Annex I nations reduce). Consideration of co-reduction of PM-10 within a climate policy framework harmonized with other environmental policies can therefore be an effective driver of climate policy. An error analysis comparing results of the current model against those of significantly more spatially resolved models at city and national scales indicates errors caused by the low spatial resolution of the global model used here may be on the order of a factor of 2.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Aug 15

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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