A recent study by Chaopeng Hong et al. found that reductions in air pollution are associated with higher crop yield. In a UCSD press release, co-author and CEGA affiliate Jennifer Burney discusses how further air quality controls could result in more gains in productivity.
“Farmers in California’s Central Valley have seen a boost in the productivity of their high-value crops – and greater earnings – as a result of the Golden State’s strict air pollution controls.
For a study published in Nature Food, researchers from the University of California, Irvine, the University of California San Diego and other institutions conducted a statistical analysis of pollution exposure and yields from 1980 to 2015 on a key sector making up about 38 percent of the state’s total agricultural output: perennial crops. These crops include almonds, grapes, nectarines, peaches, strawberries and walnuts. They found that reductions in ground ozone during this 35-year period resulted in $600 million in increased production annually by the early 2010s.”
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