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Regional growth and exposure to nearby coal fired power plant emissions

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  • Kahn, Matthew E.

Abstract

Coal fired power plants emit high levels of air pollution per unit of power generated. A comparison of emissions factors (pounds of emissions per megawatt hour of power generation) based on year 2004 data reveals that the average coal fired power plant emits six times as much nitrogen oxide and more than twelve times as much sulfur dioxide as the average non-coal fired power plant. This paper uses data on the population of all electric utilities in the United States and evidence on population growth across regions to document that; pollution levels are higher in counties with coal fired plants, and that the population is moving away from regions such as the Midwest where the dirtiest coal fired power plants are located. Population growth is taking place in the South and West. Especially in the Western region, the power plants are newer and cleaner and less likely to be coal fired. In the South and West, population growth has a smaller impact on power plant emissions growth than in the Northeast and Midwest.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Regional Science and Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 39 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 15-22

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Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:39:y:2009:i:1:p:15-22

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Keywords: Pollution Regional growth Power plants;

References

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  1. Olivier Deschenes & Enrico Moretti, 2007. "Extreme Weather Events, Mortality and Migration," NBER Working Papers 13227, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Henderson, J Vernon, 1996. "Effects of Air Quality Regulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(4), pages 789-813, September.
  3. Kahn, Matthew E., 1999. "The Silver Lining of Rust Belt Manufacturing Decline," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 360-376, November.
  4. Krupnick, Alan J. & Burtraw, Dallas, 1996. "The social costs of electricity: Do the numbers add up?," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 423-466, December.
  5. Michael Greenstone, 2003. "Did the Clean Air Act Cause the Remarkable Decline in Sulfur Dioxide Concentrations?," Working Papers 0407, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research.
  6. Kahn Matthew E, 2003. "New Evidence on Eastern Europe's Pollution Progress," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-18, April.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Electricity as a Differentiated Product
    by Matthew E. Kahn in Environmental and Urban Economics on 2012-01-13 15:42:00
  2. The Environmental Impact of Cloud Computing
    by Matthew E. Kahn in Legal Planet on 2012-09-23 15:16:17
  3. The Environmental Impact of Cloud Computing
    by Matthew E. Kahn in Legal Planet on 2012-09-23 15:16:17
  4. The Consequences of Ideology
    by Matthew Kahn in Environmental and Urban Economics on 2014-08-13 15:18:00
Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
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Cited by:
  1. Aguilar, Francisco X. & Goerndt, Michael E. & Song, Nianfu & Shifley, Stephen, 2012. "Internal, external and location factors influencing cofiring of biomass with coal in the U.S. northern region," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(6), pages 1790-1798.
  2. Matthew E. Kahn, 2010. "New Evidence on Trends in the Cost of Urban Agglomeration," NBER Chapters, in: Agglomeration Economics, pages 339-354 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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