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The Environmental and Health Impacts of Poverty Alleviation in China: From a Consumption-Based Perspective

Su-Mei Chen (), Jia-Jia Ou () and Ling-Yun He
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Su-Mei Chen: Institute of Industrial Economics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing 100006, China
Jia-Jia Ou: School of Economics, Beijing Technology and Business University, Beijing 100048, China

Sustainability, 2021, vol. 13, issue 4, 1-15

Abstract: Poverty alleviation, environmental protection, and healthcare are the three biggest challenges for the Sustainable Development Goals. However, they are also inter-linked. Therefore, it is imperative to achieve these goals in a compatible manner at the national level. Given the growing consumption caused by poverty alleviation in China, this paper investigates potential impacts of poverty alleviation on the environment and health based on an input–output approach, air quality estimation model, and health loss assessment. Due to data limitations, the base year was set as 2012. Nevertheless, the scientific value of the paper is that it offers an important supplement for a preliminary estimation on a macro level. We find that poverty alleviation could be a substantial threat to the environment and health from a consumption-based perspective, and this trade-off can be explained by the uneven pollution footprints per capita among different income groups. From a policy perspective, the government should promote green production, green lifestyles, and healthcare when reducing poverty.

Keywords: poverty alleviation; environmental quality; public health; sustainable development (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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