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The health impacts and economic value of wildland fire episodes in the U.S.: 2008-2012

Citation

Fann, N and Alman, B and Broome, RA and Morgan, GG and Johnston, FH and Pouliot, G and Rappold, AG, The health impacts and economic value of wildland fire episodes in the U.S.: 2008-2012, The Science of The Total Environment, 610-611 pp. 802-809. ISSN 0048-9697 (2018) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright 2018 Elsevier B.V.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.08.024

Abstract

Introduction: Wildland fires degrade air quality and adversely affect human health. A growing body of epidemiology literature reports increased rates of emergency departments, hospital admissions and premature deaths from wildfire smoke exposure.

Objective: Our research aimed to characterize excess mortality and morbidity events, and the economic value of these impacts, from wildland fire smoke exposure in the U.S. over a multi-year period; to date no other burden assessment has done this.

Methods: We first completed a systematic review of the epidemiologic literature and then performed photochemical air quality modeling for the years 2008 to 2012 in the continental U.S. Finally, we estimated the morbidity, mortality, and economic burden of wildland fires.

Results: Our models suggest that areas including northern California, Oregon and Idaho in the West, and Florida, Louisiana and Georgia in the East were most affected bywildland fire events in the form of additional premature deaths and respiratory hospital admissions. We estimated the economic value of these cases due to short term exposures as being between $11 and $20B (2010$) per year, with a net present value of $63B (95% confidence intervals $6$170); we estimate the value of long-term exposures as being between $76 and $130B (2010$) per year, with a net present value of $450B (95% confidence intervals $42$1200).

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:health impact assessment, source apportionment, PM2.5, ozone, CMAQ, wildland fires, wildfires
Research Division:Medical and Health Sciences
Research Group:Public Health and Health Services
Research Field:Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health)
Objective Field:Environmental Health
Author:Johnston, FH (Associate Professor Fay Johnston)
ID Code:120349
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:6
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2017-08-22
Last Modified:2018-10-10
Downloads:0

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