Health Impacts from Ambient Particle Exposure in Southern Sweden

Ralf Rittner, Erin Flanagan, Anna Oudin, Ebba Malmqvist
2020 International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health  
A health impact assessment (HIA) is an important tool for making informed decisions regarding the design and evaluation of environmental interventions. In this study, we performed a quantitative HIA for the population of Scania (1,247,993), the southernmost county in Sweden, in 2016. The impact of annual mean concentrations of particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter <2.5 µm (PM2.5), modeled at their home residences for the year 2011, on mortality, asthma, dementia, autism spectrum
more » ... tism spectrum disorders, preeclampsia and low birth weight (LBW) was explored. Concentration–response (C-R) functions were taken from epidemiological studies reporting meta-analyses when available, and otherwise from single epidemiological studies. The average level of PM2.5 experienced by the study population was 11.88 µg/m3. The PM2.5 exposure was estimated to cause 9–11% of cases of LBW and 6% of deaths from natural causes. Locally produced PM2.5 alone contributed to 2–9% of the cases of diseases and disorders investigated. Reducing concentrations to a maximum of 10 µg/m3 would, according to our estimations, reduce mortality by 3% and reduce cases of LBW by 2%. Further analyses of separate emission sources' distinct effects were also presented. Reduction of air pollution levels in the study area would, as expected, have a substantial effect on both mortality and adverse health outcomes. Reductions should be aimed for by local authorities and on national and even international levels.
doi:10.3390/ijerph17145064 pmid:32674378 fatcat:3uobwm5ck5awdnurwmocbl3uia