Commissioner: Maureen Cropper, PhD

“Improving environmental health should be a public health priority.”

Maureen Cropper is a Distinguished University Professor of Economics at the University of Maryland, Senior Fellow at Resources for the Future, and a former Lead Economist at the World Bank. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and a Fellow of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists.

Why did you decide to join the Commission on Pollution + Health?

I have devoted my career to valuing the benefits of reducing pollution, in the United States and throughout the world. Improving environmental health should be a public health priority.  The work of the Commission will help achieve this goal.

What impact will the work of the Commission have?

The Commission will have an impact on multiple audiences: public health practitioners, ministers of finance and environment and IFIs that promote development in low- and middle-income countries.  It will bring renewed attention to the impact of environmental risk factors on health and focus attention on contaminated sites–a risk factor not addressed by the Global Burden of Disease.

How can we overcome obstacles to progress in the fight against pollution?  What changes do you hope to see in your lifetime?

Indoor air pollution and lack of access to water and sanitation can most effectively be reduced through targeted subsidies:  subsidies that go to the households most likely to use home drinking water disinfection kits or to give up dirty stoves for clean ones. Reducing outdoor air pollution will require a collective will to regulate emissions from power plants, factories and motor vehicles and switch to cleaner fuels.

The Commission on Pollution and Health is an initiative of The Lancet, the Global Alliance on Health and Pollution (GAHP), and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.  Commissioners include many of the world’s leading researchers and practitioners in the fields of pollution management, environmental health and sustainable development.  

Partnering to Solve Pollution Problems