Long-Term Consequences of Air Pollution: Does Age or Years of Exposure Matter?
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Joint work with Zichen Deng and Kjell Salvanes
This paper examines the long-term impacts of early childhood pollution exposure by exploiting the sharp decrease in acid rain in Norway after the enactment of the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. We combine a difference-in-differences and a movers’ design to analyze the outcomes between cohorts born in municipalities before and after a significant decrease in pollution exposure relative to those same cohorts born in municipalities with little initial exposure. We find that a higher pollution level is associated with lower academic performance and that children are most vulnerable to pollution exposure before the age of 4 years.
About Aline Bütikofer:
Aline Bütikofer is a Professor at the Department of Economics at the Norwegian School of Economics. She holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Bern. Her research sheds new light on how public policy affects inequality and social mobility. She has contributed to the estimation of the long-term effects of early health investments in children, with a focus on identifying causal effects of policies such as infant health care, vaccination programs, or pollution regulations. In addition, her work documents health inequalities and analyzes the effect of medical innovations on productivity and human capital investment. Since 2020, Aline is a co-editor at the Journal of Human Resources.
Supported by the Luxembourg National Research Fund (FNR) 17931929