Project at a Glance

Title: Estimating the Health Benefits of Reducing Emissions of Toxic Air Contaminants in California

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Delucchi, Mark

Contractor: UC Davis

Contract Number: 20RD017

Research Program Area: Health & Exposure

Topic Areas: Health Effects of Air Pollution, Toxic Air Contaminants

Research Summary:

One of California's critical air quality goals is to reduce the public's health risk from exposure to airborne toxic chemicals. To achieve the goal, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) is prioritizing the evaluation and reduction of exposure to toxic air contaminants (TACs). The Community Air Protection Act, Assembly Bill (AB) 617, aims to reduce exposure in communities that experience high cumulative exposure to air pollution, including TACs. The Air Toxics Hot Spots Information and Assessment Act, AB 2588, requires commercial facilities to report their air toxics emissions, identifies facilities that pose significant health risks, and reduces the emissions from these facilities. Air pollution control efforts driven by state and federal law require reductions in pollution sources that contribute to criteria pollutants such as particle pollution and ozone, but many of these sources also contribute to toxic emissions. Under AB 2588, CARB performs health risk assessments (HRAs) of TACs. The Air Toxics Hot Spots Program Guidance Manual, established by Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), recommends exposure variates, cancer and non-cancer health values, and air modeling protocols needed to perform these HRAs. These HRAs estimate the incidence of cancer and non-cancer impacts of TACs, but they do not provide a mechanism to estimate the monetary value of these impacts. Developing the methodology to identify specific health outcomes from toxic emissions and estimate the monetary value of these health outcomes, including cancer and non-cancer impacts, will enable CARB to better assess and estimate the value of health benefits generated from existing and proposed rules and regulations affecting TACs.

For questions regarding this research project, including available data and progress status, contact: Research Division staff at (916) 445-0753

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