The costs of air pollution has been estimated in France
The French Senate has called for new efforts to tackle air pollution, arguing it inflates healthcare costs, reduces economic productivity and agricultural yields, and has put Paris in the EU's bad books.
A Committee of Inquiry in the French Senate has described air pollution as an "economic aberration". The committee's proposals to reduce the phenomenon, which costs France over €100 billion every year, include raising the tax on diesel and taxing emissions of the worst polluting substances.
In the report entitled "Air pollution: the cost of inaction", published on Wednesday 15 July, the Senate committee estimated the annual cost of air Pollution in France at €101.3 billion.
While overall air pollution has fallen in recent years, "the nature of the pollution has changed". Rather than localised industrial pollution, today's problem is more diffuse, caused by transport, heating and agriculture, the report said.
Particle pollution is responsible for 42,000 premature deaths each year in France alone, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).
The Senate report put the health related cost of air pollution in France (medical treatments, premature death, absenteeism, etc.) at "between €68 and €96 billion", and the non-health related cost (decline in agricultural yield, degradation of buildings, preventative expenditure, etc.) at €4.3 billion.