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CNN: Cars have been guzzling leaded gasoline for 99 years. Not any more

Article published: 30 Aug,  2021

IB Economics syllabus: Microeconomics (market failure, negative externality, government intervention)

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has announced that leaded gasoline for use on roads is finally banned worldwide. This comes with the Algeria being the last country to prohibit its use. As the article states, leaded gasoline “is linked to serious health problems” such as “heart disease, stroke and certain types of cancers” and even the damage of the human brain, particularly those of children. Therefore, with such large external costs it is no question that its use has led to market failure, for which reason governments started banning it in the second half of the 20th century. This commentary can make use of the key concept of economic well-being, intervention and even sustainability as “Nearly a quarter of energy-related global greenhouse gas emissions can be attributed to the transport sector, according to UNEP, a share that is on track to grow to one-third by 2050.”

Source of image: STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images

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