Benefits of air quality for human health resulting from climate change mitigation through dietary change and food loss prevention policy

Jansakoo, T., Sekizawa, S., Fujimori, S. ORCID:, Hasegawa, T., & Oshiro, K. (2024). Benefits of air quality for human health resulting from climate change mitigation through dietary change and food loss prevention policy. Sustainability Science 10.1007/s11625-024-01490-w.

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Food production, particularly cattle husbandry, contributes significantly to air pollution and its associated health hazards. However, making changes in dietary habits, such as reducing red meat consumption and minimizing food waste, can lead to substantial improvements in both air quality and human health. In this study, we explored the impact of dietary changes on future air quality and human wellbeing. We also assessed the influence of dietary transformation policies in the context of climate change mitigation, with the objective of understanding how policies can effectively complement each other. We used a chemical transport model and an integrated assessment model to determine changes in fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone (O3) concentrations. Then, an exposure model was applied to estimate premature deaths as a consequence of air pollution. Our results showed that dietary changes could play a crucial role in mitigating air pollution, particularly in regions where agricultural activities emit significant quantities of ammonia. In the European Union, for example, dietary changes could lead to a reduction of 5.34% in PM2.5 by 2050. Similarly, in Asia, the models projected a reduction of 6.23% in PM2.5 by 2100. Ground surface O3 levels in Southeast Asia were projected to drop by as much as 12.93% by 2100. Our results further showed that dietary changes could lead to significant reductions in global mortality associated with PM2.5 and O3, with 187,500 and 131,110 avoided deaths per year expected by 2100. A combined approach that integrates dietary changes with climate change mitigation measures could lead to more comprehensive air quality improvements in specific regions. However, careful consideration is needed to address any potential adverse effects on O3 concentrations in some areas.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Air pollution; Climate change; Dietary shifts; GEOS-Chem; Human health; Ozone; PM2.5
Research Programs: Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Sustainable Service Systems (S3)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Transformative Institutional and Social Solutions (TISS)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2024 07:34
Last Modified: 29 Apr 2024 07:34

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