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The Impact of Pollution on Worker Productivity

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  • Joshua Graff Zivin
  • Matthew Neidell

Abstract

This paper assesses the impact of pollution on worker productivity by relating exogenous daily variations in ozone with productivity of agricultural workers as recorded under piece rate contracts. We find robust evidence that ozone levels well below federal air quality standards have a significant impact on productivity. These results suggest that, in contrast to common characterizations of environmental protection as a tax on producers, environmental protection can also be viewed as an investment in human capital, and thus a tool for promoting economic growth.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.102.7.3652
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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/aer/data/dec2012/20110533_data.zip
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 102 (2012)
Issue (Month): 7 (December)
Pages: 3652-73

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:102:y:2012:i:7:p:3652-73

Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.102.7.3652
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References

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  1. Bandiera, Oriana & Barankay, Iwan & Rasul, Imran, 2009. "Social Incentives in the Workplace," IZA Discussion Papers 4190, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 2003. "The Impact Of Air Pollution On Infant Mortality: Evidence From Geographic Variation In Pollution Shocks Induced By A Recession," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(3), pages 1121-1167, August.
  3. Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 1998. "Does Air Quality Matter? Evidence from the Housing Market," NBER Working Papers 6826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Joshua Graff Zivin & Matthew Neidell, 2014. "Temperature and the Allocation of Time: Implications for Climate Change," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 32(1), pages 1 - 26.
  5. Phoebe Koundouri & Richard Carson & Céline Nauges, . "Arsenic Mitigation in Bangladesh: A Household Labor Market Approach," DEOS Working Papers 1029, Athens University of Economics and Business.
  6. Harry J. Paarsch & Bruce S. Shearer, 1999. "The Response of Worker Effort to Piece Rates: Evidence from the British Columbia Tree-Planting Industry," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 34(4), pages 643-667.
  7. Hong H. & Chernozhukov V., 2002. "Three-Step Censored Quantile Regression and Extramarital Affairs," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 97, pages 872-882, September.
  8. Paarsch, Harry J. & Shearer, Bruce, 1996. "Piece Rates, Fixed Wages, and Incentive Effects: Statistical Evidence from Payroll Records," Cahiers de recherche 9623, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
  9. Ostro, Bart D., 1983. "The effects of air pollution on work loss and morbidity," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 371-382, December.
  10. Maximilian Auffhammer & Ryan Kellogg, 2011. "Clearing the Air? The Effects of Gasoline Content Regulation on Air Quality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2687-2722, October.
  11. Orana Bandiera & Iwan Barankay & Imran Rasul, 2005. "Social preferences and the response to incentives: Evidence from personnel data," Natural Field Experiments 00212, The Field Experiments Website.
  12. Rema Hanna & Paulina Oliva, 2011. "The Effect of Pollution on Labor Supply: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Mexico City," NBER Working Papers 17302, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Citations

Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Pollution has an impact on worker productivity
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2011-06-08 14:58:00
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Cited by:
  1. Stefano Bosi & David Desmarchelier & Lionel Ragot, 2013. "Pollution effects on labor supply and growth," CEEES Paper Series CE3S-05/13, European University at St. Petersburg, Department of Economics.
  2. Joshua Graff Zivin & Matthew Neidell, 2013. "Environment, Health, and Human Capital," NBER Working Papers 18935, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Fernando Aragon & Juan Pablo Rud, 2012. "Mining, Pollution and Agricultural Productivity: Evidence from Ghana," Discussion Papers dp12-08, Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University.
  4. Stéphane Hallegatte & Geoffrey Heal & Marianne Fay & David Treguer, 2012. "From Growth to Green Growth - a Framework," NBER Working Papers 17841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. David Desmarchelier, 2013. "Effect of pollution on the total factor productivity and the Hopf bifurcation," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 33(3), pages 2328-2339.
  6. Tom Chang & Joshua Graff Zivin & Tal Gross & Matthew Neidell, 2014. "Particulate Pollution and the Productivity of Pear Packers," NBER Working Papers 19944, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Michael Jacobs, 2012. "Green Growth: Economic Theory and Political Discourse," Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment Working Papers 92, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
  8. Jans, Jenny & Johansson, Per & Nilsson, Peter, 2014. "Economic Status, Air Quality, and Child Health: Evidence from Inversion Episodes," IZA Discussion Papers 7929, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Nathalie Mathieu-Bolh & Xavier Pautrel, 2014. "Environmental taxation, health and the life-cycle," Working Papers hal-00930936, HAL.

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  1. Economic Logic blog

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