Shushanik Margaryan

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Nicolas Hérault

Melbourne Institute Brown Bag

Title: Low Emission Zones and Population Health: Evidence From Germany

Abstract: Epidemiological and medical literature links air pollution to a range of cardiopulmonary health outcomes, such as asthma or myocardial infarction. In EU countries admissible concentration levels of various pollutants are regulated by EU directives. The European cities violating these standards ought to introduce "Clean Air Action Plan". One of the most aggressive measures within these action plans are low emission zones (LEZs) enacted in Germany since 2008. LEZs are restricted areas in cities where high polluting cars are banned to enter. Currently there are 55 LEZs in Germany. This study aims at (1) replicating previous evidence that the enactment of LEZs reduced particulate matter (PM10) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2); (2) further investigating the effect of LEZs on cardiopulmonary health outcomes that are linked to air pollution. To this end I use data from (1) Federal Environmental Agency (Umweltbundesamt) and (2) German Hospital Statistics. The main estimation approach is difference-in-differences, where large cities with no LEZ serve as the control group for the large cities with existing LEZ. I further use the synthetic control approach as a complementary method

Presenter: Shushanik Margaryan, University of Hamburg, Germany

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