TitleImprovements in Air Quality and Health Outcomes Among California Medicaid Enrollees Due to Goods Movement Actions
Publication TypePeer-Reviewed Report
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsMeng, Y-Y, Su, JG, Chen, X, Molitor, J, Yue, D, Jerrett, M
Date Published05/2021
InstitutionHealth Effects Institute
Report Number205

In 2006, the California Air Resources Board (CARB*) and local air quality management districts implemented an Emission Reduction Plan for Ports and Goods Movement program (referred to hereinafter as GM policy actions) (CARB 2006). The GM policy actions comprise approximately 200 actions with an estimated investment value of $6 to $10 billion. These actions targeted the major sources and polluters related to goods movements, such as highways; ports and railyard trucks; ship fuel and shore power; cargo equipment; and locomotives. These actions aimed to reduce total statewide domestic GM emissions to 2001 levels or lower by the year 2010; to reduce the statewide diesel particulate matter (DPM) health risk from GM by 85% by the year 2020; and to reduce the nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions from international GM in the South Coast Air Basin by 30% from projected 2015 levels and 50% from projected 2020 levels. The years 2006 and 2007 marked an important milestone in starting to regulate GM polluters and adopting stricter standards for traffic-related air pollution. This project aimed to examine the impact of the GM policy actions on reductions in ambient air pollution and subsequent improvements in health outcomes of Medi-Cal fee-for-service (FFS) beneficiaries with chronic conditions in 10 counties in California. Specifically, we examined whether the GM policy actions reduced air pollution near GMC corridors more than in control areas. We subsequently assessed whether there were greater decreases in emergency room (ER) visits and hospitalizations for enrollees with chronic conditions who lived in the GM corridors (GMCs) than for those who lived in other areas.