Calculs des effets sur la pollution atmosphérique, la santé et l’économie d’un programme d’amélioration de l’isolation des bâtiments en Europe
Background: In Europe a substantial share of the energy supply is used for domestic heating and cooling. The quality of building insulation thus significantly impacts air pollution. Objectives: To model the effects of an improved building insulation scenario in Europe on air pollution levels and the resulting effects on health and economy. Methods: Projected energy savings between 2005 and 2020 were calculated for an improved building insulation scenario and a business as usual scenario. The resulting changes in emissions (e.g. from power plants) were used in the Comprehensive Air-Quality Model with extensions. Mean annual changes in the main air pollutants were derived for each country. World Health Organization (WHO) and European Union (EU) data on populations and on impacts of pollutants were used to derive health effects and costs. Effects on indoor air quality were not assessed. Results: Projected effects on the mean annual change in PM2.5 varied from −0.008 μg/m3 (Finland) to −0.538 μg/m3 (Belgium). The mean number of life-years (LY) gained annually per 100000 adults was 24.3 LY (range 0.9 to 54.5). The total number of LY gained annually varied from 31 in Finland to 22524 in Germany, totaling 78678 LY in Europe. A total of 7173 cases of persistent chronic bronchitis could be avoided annually. Several other health outcomes improved similarly. The saved societal costs totaled 6.64 billion € annually. Conclusions: In addition to carbon emission reductions, an improved building insulation scenario in Europe would have substantial benefits on health through improvements in air pollution. Health effects and societal cost savings may significantly counterbalance investment costs and should be taken into account when evaluating strategies for mitigation of global warming.