Peer-Reviewed Publications:

  • Association Between Long-Term Air Pollution Exposure and COVID-19 Mortality in Latin America (with Jorge Bonilla, Alejandro Lopez-Feldman, Paula Pereda, and Cristobal Ruiz-Tagle) [EfD Blog Post]. PLOS One, 2023 [View]
  • Coal-to-Gas Fuel Switching and its Effects on Housing Prices (with Scott Loveridge). Energy Economics, 2022 [View]
  • Oil, Politics, and “Corrupt Bastards” (with Alex James). Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 2022 [View]
  • Air Quality Warnings and Temporary Driving Bans: Evidence from Air Pollution, Car Trips, and Mass-Transit Ridership in Santiago. Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 2021. [View]
  • Is Mining and Environmental Disamenity? Evidence from Resource Extraction Site Openings. Environmental and Resource Economics, 2020. [View]
  • Spatial Aggregation Bias in Implicit Prices of Environmental Amenities. Economics Bulletin, 2019. [View]

Pre-Dissertation Work:

  • Mineral Taxes and the Local Public Goods Provision in Mining Communities (with Dusan Paredes). Resources Policy, 2017. [View]
  • Disaggregation of Sectors in Social Accounting Matrices Using a Customized Wolsky Method: A Comment on its Estimation Bias. Applied Economics Letters, 2016. [View]
  • Scales of Production and Mining Economies: The Case of Chile in its Regional Dimension (with Patricio Aroca) (In Spanish). EURE, 2014. [View][Media Coverage]

Working Papers: 

The Health Benefits of Solar Power Generation: Evidence from Chile (with Beia Spiller and J. Cristobal Ruiz-Tagle). Environmental Defense Fund Economics Discussion Paper Series, EDF EDP 21-02 [Link][EDF Blog Post][Foco Económico][Latest Version][Revisions Requested]

Renewable energy can yield social benefits through local air quality improvements and their subsequent effects on human health. We estimate some of these benefits using data gathered during the rapid adoption of large-scale solar power generation in Chile over the last decade. Relying on exogenous variation from incremental solar generation capacity over time, we find that solar energy displaces fossil fuel generation, primarily coal-fired generation, and curtails hospital admissions, particularly those due to lower respiratory diseases. These effects are noted mostly in cities downwind of displaced fossil fuel generation and are present across the most vulnerable age groups.

Cash Transfers and Voter Turnout (with Alexander James and Brock Smith). UAA Working Paper Series 2022-01 [Link][Under Review]

We estimate the effect of cash transfers on voter turnout, leveraging a large-scale natural experiment, the Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend (PFD) program, which provides residents with a check of varying size one month before election day. We find that larger transfers cause people to vote, especially in gubernatorial elections in which a 10% increase in cash ($182) causes a 1.4 percentage point increase in turnout. Effects are concentrated among racial minorities, the young, and poor. There is little evidence that transfers reduce logistical costs of voting, but rather operate by reducing voter apathy among the low-income electorate.

Digging Deep: Resource Exploitation and High-Level Education (with Lenin Balza and Camilo de los Rios) IDB Working Paper Series 10-2022 [Link][In Preparation for Submission]

Do resource-extraction booms crowd out postsecondary education? We explore this question by examining the higher education-related decisions of Chilean high school graduates during the 2000s commodities boom. We find mineral extraction increases a person’s likelihood of enrolling in postsecondary technical education while reducing the likelihood of completing a four-year professional degree program. Importantly, effects are heterogeneous across economic backgrounds. The impact on college dropouts is primarily present among students that graduated from public high schools, which generally cater to low-income groups. Our findings show that natural resources may affect human capital accumulation differently across income groups in resource-rich economies.

Work in Progress:

Blasting Dust: The Pollution-Health Impact of Industrial Mining Developments (with Gustavo Ahumada, Lenin Balza and Nicolás Gomez)

Environmental Enforcement in the Aftermath of Major Environmental Disasters (with Lenin Balza and Nicolás Gomez)

Water Scarcity, Fossil Fuels, and the Electricity Generation Mix: The Pollution and Health Impact of Droughts in Brazil (with Danae Hernández-Cortés)

Renewables, Pollution Avoided, and Infant Health (with Beia Spiller)

Chapters in Books:

Project Analysis and the Regional Dimension (with P. Aroca), in Evaluación Social de Proyectos: Orientaciones para su Aplicación. Aguilera, R. (Editor). Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de la República, Uruguay. 2011.

Copper Mining in the Antofagasta Region (with P. Aroca), in Región de Antofagasta, Pasado, Presente y Futuro. Llagostera, A. (Editor). Ediciones Universitarias, Universidad Católica del Norte, Chile. 2010.

Water Resources in a Dry Area (with M. Lufin and M. Hasewaga), in Región de Antofagasta, Pasado, Presente y Futuro. Llagostera, A. (Editor). Ediciones Universitarias, Universidad Católica del Norte, Chile. 2010.

La Experiencia del Instituto de Economía Aplicada Regional (IDEAR) de la Universidad Católica del Norte (with E. López), in Centros de pensamiento estratégico territorial: Instrumentos de la gobernanza regional en Chile, Vergara, P. (Editor). Subsecretaría de Desarrollo Regional y Administrativo, Chile. 2010.

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CU Environmental and Resource Economics Workshop. Colorado, 2017 – Photo Credits: Sarah Jacobson