Giving up the internal combustion engine could save Canadians nearly C$13 billion a year in avoided health care costs from the effects of gasoline and diesel exhaust, the results of two Health Canada studies suggest.
The most recent, released last week, examined human health risks from on-road and off-road terrestrial vehicles’ gasoline engines’ exhaust pollution.
The total societal cost for the sample year of 2015 “is estimated to be $7.3 billion,” the report found. Gasoline exhaust was also associated with 940 premature deaths from lung cancer, and cardiovascular and respiratory system failures—roughly one person every ten hours.
“Researchers came to those figures by estimating how much exhaust fumes contribute to certain air contaminants – ground-level ozone, fine particulate matter, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen dioxide – and estimating population health impacts associated with exposure to those contaminants,” iPolitics reports.
Last year, Health Canada associated diesel emissions “with 710 premature deaths in Canada in 2015,” and a cost to the economy of roughly $5.5 billion.
In June, the Winnipeg-based International Institute for Sustainable Development calculated that air pollution from all sources cost the Canadian economy $36 billion in that same year.