Air Pollution, Student Health, and School Absences: Evidence from China

68 Pages Posted: 30 Oct 2018

See all articles by Siyu Chen

Siyu Chen

The Institute for Economic and Social Research, Jinan University

Chongshan Guo

Guangzhou Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Xinfei Huang

Sun Yat-sen University

Date Written: October 8, 2018

Abstract

Little is known about the impact of air pollution on school children in developing countries. This paper aims to fill this gap by quantifying the causal effect of air pollution on the health status and the school attendance of the Chinese students. We relate the arguably exogenous daily variation in air pollution-instrumented by the occurrence of temperature inversion-with student illnesses and absences from more than 3,000 schools in Guangzhou City. We find a sizable deleterious effect of air pollution on school attendance through the health channel. The impact persists for at least four days and displays a monotonically increasing pattern. Notably, this harmful effect is non-negligible even when pollution levels are below the official standard for air quality in China, suggesting that the current ambient air quality standards in China are not low enough to protect students.

Keywords: Air Pollution, Student Health, School Absences, China, Air Quality Standards

JEL Classification: I18, I24, Q51, Q53

Suggested Citation

Chen, Siyu and Guo, Chongshan and Huang, Xinfei, Air Pollution, Student Health, and School Absences: Evidence from China (October 8, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3262361 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3262361

Siyu Chen (Contact Author)

The Institute for Economic and Social Research, Jinan University ( email )

Guangzhou
Singapore

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.siyuchen.website/

Chongshan Guo

Guangzhou Center for Disease Control and Prevention ( email )

Dexing 1st Cross Street
Guangzhou, Guangdong 510440
China

Xinfei Huang

Sun Yat-sen University ( email )

135 Xingang West Road
Guangzhou, Guangdong 510275
China

HOME PAGE: http://isbf.sysu.edu.cn/cn/szll/szll01/szll01a/11034.htm

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