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Occasional Papers

The Occasional Papers series seeks to disseminate the work carried out by the Banco de España within its sphere of competence that is considered to be of general interest for knowledge of the functioning of the Spanish economy and of its international environment.

The opinions and analyses published in the Occasional Papers are the responsibility of the authors and are not necessarily shared by the Banco de España or the Eurosystem.

  • 19/01/2023
    2301. Air pollution: a review of its economic effects and policies to mitigate them  File PDF: Opens in a new window (759 KB) Laura Hospido, Carlos Sanz and Ernesto Villanueva

    Air pollution is an increasing cause of concern among the scientific community, policymakers and the general public. This interest has led to a sharp increase in the number of scientific papers on air pollution. This paper provides a summary of the most prominent recent economic literature on the effects of air pollution, the main policy lessons that can be drawn from it, and the areas in which more research would be especially valuable. The literature has found sizable negative effects of air pollution on health and mortality. There is also some evidence that air pollution may have negative non-health effects, reducing labour supply and productivity, although the evidence is more mixed on the latter aspect. The literature also suggests that effects on both health and non-health dimensions may be heterogeneous in a number of dimensions, most prominently age, with more negative effects for the elderly. Finally, more research is needed on which policies to tackle air pollution would be more cost-effective.

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