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Advances in Environmental Research
  Volume 10, Number 1, March 2021, pages 017-41
open access

Impact of particulate matter on the morbidity and mortality and its assessment of economic costs
Elmira Ramazanova, Galym Tokazhanov, Aiymgul Kerimray and Woojin Lee

    Kazakhstan's cities experience high concentrations levels of atmospheric particulate matter (PM), which is well-known for its highly detrimental effect on the human health. A further increase in PM concentrations in the future could lead to a higher air pollution-caused morbidity and mortality, causing an increase in healthcare expenditures by the government. However, to prevent elevated PM concentrations in the future, more stringent standards could be implemented by lowering current maximum allowable PM concentration limit to Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)'s limits. Therefore, this study aims to find out what impact this change in environmental policy towards PM has on state economy in the long run. Future PM10 and PM2.5 concentrations were estimated using multiple linear regression based on gross regional product (GRP) and population growth parameters. Dose-response model was based on World Health Organization's approach for the identification of mortality, morbidity and healthcare costs due to air pollution. Analysis of concentrations revealed that only 6 out of 21 cities of Kazakhstan did not exceed the EU limit on PM10 concentration. Changing environmental standards resulted in the 71.7% decrease in mortality and 77% decrease in morbidity cases in all cities compared to the case without changes in environmental policy. Moreover, the cost of morbidity and mortality associated with air pollution decreased by $669 million in 2030 and $2183 million in 2050 in case of implementation of OECD standards. Thus, changing environmental regulations will be beneficial in terms of both of mortality reduction and state budget saving.
Key Words
    air pollution; Kazakhstan; mortality and morbidity; healthcare cost; environmental policy
Elmira Ramazanova, Galym Tokazhanov, Aiymgul Kerimray and Woojin Lee:
Department of Civil and Environment Engineering, Green Energy and Environmental Lab.,
National Laboratory Astana, Nazarbayev University, Kazakhstan

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