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School bus emissions, student health and academic performance

, Georgia State University, United States ; , Georgia State University & NBER, United States ; , Georgia State University & IZA, United States

Economics of Education Review Volume 70, Number 1, ISSN 0272-7757 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


Diesel emissions from school buses expose children to high levels of air pollution; retrofitting bus engines can substantially reduce this exposure. Using variation from 2656 retrofits across Georgia, we estimate effects of emissions reductions on district-level health and academic achievement. We demonstrate positive effects on respiratory health, measured by a statewide test of aerobic capacity. Placebo tests on body mass index show no impact. We also find that retrofitting districts experience significant test score gains in English and smaller gains in math. Our results suggest that engine retrofits can have meaningful and cost-effective impacts on health and cognitive functioning.


Austin, W., Heutel, G. & Kreisman, D. (2019). School bus emissions, student health and academic performance. Economics of Education Review, 70(1), 109-126. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved September 23, 2023 from .

This record was imported from Economics of Education Review on June 3, 2019. Economics of Education Review is a publication of Elsevier.

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