Higher fuel prices are associated with lower air pollution levels

Barnett, Adrian G. and Knibbs, Luke D. (2014) Higher fuel prices are associated with lower air pollution levels. Environment International, 66 88-91. doi:10.1016/j.envint.2014.01.029

Author Barnett, Adrian G.
Knibbs, Luke D.
Title Higher fuel prices are associated with lower air pollution levels
Journal name Environment International   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0160-4120
Publication date 2014-02-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.envint.2014.01.029
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 66
Start page 88
End page 91
Total pages 4
Place of publication Kidlington, Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Pergamon
Language eng
Subject 2300 Environmental Science
Abstract Air pollution is a persistent problem in urban areas, and traffic emissions are a major cause of poor air quality. Policies to curb pollution levels often involve raising the price of using private vehicles, for example, congestion charges. We were interested in whether higher fuel prices were associated with decreased air pollution levels. We examined an association between diesel and petrol prices and four traffic-related pollutants in Brisbane from 2010 to 2013. We used a regression model and examined pollution levels up to 16. days after the price change. Higher diesel prices were associated with statistically significant short-term reductions in carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides. Changes in petrol prices had no impact on air pollution. Raising diesel taxes in Australia could be justified as a public health measure. As raising taxes is politically unpopular, an alternative political approach would be to remove schemes that put a downward pressure on fuel prices, such as industry subsidies and shopping vouchers that give fuel discounts.
Keyword Air pollution
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2015 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 1 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Wed, 19 Feb 2014, 17:44:41 EST by Luke Knibbs on behalf of School of Public Health