Climate, health, agricultural and economic impacts of tighter vehicle-emission standards


Journal Article

Non-CO 2 air pollutants from motor vehicles have traditionally been controlled to protect air quality and health, but also affect climate. We use global composition-climate modelling to examine the integrated impacts of adopting stringent European on-road vehicle-emission standards for these pollutants in 2015 in many developing countries. Relative to no extra controls, the tight standards lead to annual benefits in 2030 and beyond of 120,000-280,000 avoided premature air pollution-related deaths, 6.1-19.7 million metric tons of avoided ozone-related yield losses of major food crops, $US0.6-2.4 trillion avoided health damage and $US1.1-4.3 billion avoided agricultural damage, and mitigation of 0.20 (+0.14/-0.17)C of Northern Hemisphere extratropical warming during 2040-2070. Tighter vehicle-emission standards are thus extremely likely to mitigate short-term climate change in most cases, in addition to providing large improvements in human health and food security. These standards will not reduce CO 2 emissions, however, which is required to mitigate long-term climate change. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Shindell, D; Faluvegi, G; Walsh, M; Anenberg, SC; Van Dingenen, R; Muller, NZ; Austin, J; Koch, D; Milly, G

Published Date

  • April 1, 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 1 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 59 - 66

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1758-6798

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1758-678X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1038/nclimate1066

Citation Source

  • Scopus