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The Health Effects of Coal Electricity Generation in India

  • Cropper, Maureen

    ()

    (Resources for the Future)

  • Gamkhar, Shama
  • Malik, Kabir
  • Limonov, Alex
  • Partridge, Ian

To help inform pollution control policies in the Indian electricity sector we estimate the health damages associated with particulate matter, sulfur dioxide (SO2), and nitrogen oxides (NOx) from individual coal-fired power plants. We calculate the damages per ton of pollutant for each of 89 plants and compute total damages in 2008, by pollutant, for 63 plants. We estimate health damages by combining data on power plant emissions of particulate matter, SO2 and NOx with reduced-form intake fraction models that link emissions to changes in population-weighted ambient concentrations of fine particles. Concentration-response functions for fine particles from Pope et al. (2002) are used to estimate premature cardiopulmonary deaths associated with air emissions for persons 30 and older. Our results suggest that 75 percent of premature deaths are associated with fine particles that result from SO2 emissions. After characterizing the distribution of premature mortality across plants we calculate the health benefits and cost-per-life saved of the flue-gas desulfurization unit installed at the Dahanu power plant in Maharashtra and the health benefits of coal washing at the Rihand power plant in Uttar Pradesh.

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Paper provided by Resources For the Future in its series Discussion Papers with number dp-12-25.

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Date of creation: 26 Jun 2012
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Handle: RePEc:rff:dpaper:dp-12-25
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  1. Soma Bhattacharya & Anna Alberini & Maureen Cropper, 2007. "The value of mortality risk reductions in Delhi, India," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 34(1), pages 21-47, February.
  2. S. Mahendra Dev, 2008. "India," Chapters, in: Handbook on the South Asian Economies, chapter 1 Edward Elgar.
  3. Urvashi Narain, 2008. "Policy Monitor," Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 2(2), pages 276-291, Summer.
  4. Kabir Malik & Maureen Cropper & Alexander Limonov & Anoop Singh, 2011. "Estimating the Impact of Restructuring on Electricity Generation Efficiency: The Case of the Indian Thermal Power Sector," NBER Working Papers 17383, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Nicholas Z. Muller & Robert Mendelsohn, 2009. "Efficient Pollution Regulation: Getting the Prices Right," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 1714-39, December.
  6. S. Madheswaran, 2007. "Measuring the value of statistical life: estimating compensating wage differentials among workers in India," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 84(1), pages 83-96, October.
  7. Burtraw, Dallas & Palmer, Karen & Banzhaf, H. Spencer, 2002. "Efficient Emission Fees in the U.S. Electricity Sector," Discussion Papers dp-02-45, Resources For the Future.
  8. Maureen L. Cropper & Nathalie B. Simon & Anna Alberini & Seema Arora & P.K. Sharma, 1997. "The Health Benefits of Air Pollution Control in Delhi," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(5), pages 1625-1629.
  9. Shanmugam, K R, 2001. " Self Selection Bias in the Estimates of Compensating Differentials for Job Risks in India," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 263-75, May.
  10. Muller, Nicholas Z. & Mendelsohn, Robert, 2007. "Measuring the damages of air pollution in the United States," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 1-14, July.
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