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Carbon pricing: a win-win environmental and public health policy.

Can J Public Health. 2018 Jun 28;:

Authors: Ambasta A, Buonocore JJ

Carbon pricing is an important tool for mitigating climate change. Carbon pricing can have significant health co-benefits. Air pollution from fossil fuels leads to detrimental health effects, including premature mortality, heart attacks, hospitalization from cardiorespiratory conditions, stroke, asthma exacerbations, and absenteeism from school and work, and may also be linked to autism spectrum disorder and Alzheimer’s disease. Reduction in fossil fuel combustion through a carbon price can lead to improvements in all these areas of health. It can also improve health by encouraging active transportation choices and improving ecosystems. Furthermore, it can promote health equity in society and improve overall societal health where the revenue from carbon pricing is used as a progressive redistribution mechanism for low-income households. Hence, carbon pricing is a win-win environmental and public health policy and an important step toward achieving Canada’s emission target by 2030. However, carbon pricing has several potential pitfalls which need to be considered in the design and implementation of any such policy. As Canada moves ahead with mandatory carbon pricing this fall, it is important to monitor its impact, evaluate it objectively, and modify and complement as necessary with policies and regulations.

PMID: 29981108 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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