Straw Burning, PM 2.5 and Death: Evidence from China

65 Pages Posted: 21 Aug 2019 Last revised: 3 Mar 2020

See all articles by Guojun He

Guojun He

The University of Hong Kong

Tong Liu

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology

Maigeng Zhou

Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention - Non-Communicable Disease Center

Date Written: 2019

Abstract

This study uses satellite data to detect agricultural straw burning and estimates its impact on air pollution and health in China. We find that straw burning increases particulate matter pollution and causes people to die from cardiorespiratory diseases. We estimate that a 10 µg/m3 increase in PM2.5 increases mortality by 3.25%. Middle-aged and old people in rural areas are particularly sensitive to straw burning pollution. Exploratory analysis of China’s programs to subsidize straw recycling suggests that extending these programs would bring about a health benefit that is an order of magnitude larger than the cost.

Keywords: straw burning, stubble burning, air pollution, mortality, straw recycling

JEL Classification: I18, I31, Q18, Q53, R1

Suggested Citation

He, Guojun and Liu, Tong and Zhou, Maigeng, Straw Burning, PM 2.5 and Death: Evidence from China (2019). HKUST IEMS Working Paper No. 2019-66, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3439831 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3439831

Guojun He (Contact Author)

The University of Hong Kong ( email )

Pokfulam Road
Hong Kong, Pokfulam HK
China

Tong Liu

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology ( email )

Division of Social Science
Kowloon
Hong Kong, Hong Kong
China

Maigeng Zhou

Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention - Non-Communicable Disease Center ( email )

Beijing 100050
China

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