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Although industrialisation is a crucial aspect of economic growth across developing nations, through the release of air contaminants, industrial activities may also create adverse environmental health consequences. Noting that continuous production and other economic activities are crucial for continued survival, this study explores this issue by including the role of governance that is deemed essential but the literature is relatively sparse particularly in the context of developing countries. This research empirically analyses the relationship between air pollution and adult mortality rates from 72 developing countries from the period of 2010 until 2017. Particulate matter (PM2.5) and carbon dioxide (CO2) are used as indicators of air pollution. From the generalized method of moments (GMM) estimations, the results reveal that air pollution negatively affects adult mortality rate. The result reveals that a 10% increase in the PM2.5 level induces the adult mortality rates to increase between 0.04% and 0.06%. In addition, the government significantly moderates the negative effect of air pollution on adult mortality, whereby a one-unit enhancement in governance quality index reduces mortality among the adults in the developing countries by 0.01%. On the other hand, CO2 emission also appears to be positive, but not statistically significant. The results suggest that governance and public health interplay in the sense of a transition towards economic development for improved living and health states can be achievable with improved governance quality.


Nor Asma Ahmad, Normaz Wana Ismail, Shaufique Fahmi Ahmad Sidique, Nur Syazwani Mazlan. Air pollution effects on adult mortality rate in developing countries. Environmental science and pollution research international. 2021 Feb;28(7):8709-8721

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PMID: 33068244

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