Arsenic Contaminated Groundwater and the Socioeconomic-Gradient in Child Health : Evidence from the Arsenic Mitigation Campaign in BangladeshArsenic Contaminated Groundwater and the Socioeconomic-Gradient in Child Health : Evidence from the Arsenic Mitigation Campaign in Bangladesh
We examine the impact of arsenic exposure on child health in Bangladesh. The geographic variation in groundwater arsenic level as well as the massive well-testing and awareness campaign in the late 1990s offer a natural experiment inducing variation in child’s exposure to arsenic. Given the government’s efforts to encourage households to switch away from “unsafe” wells, areas with “unsafe” groundwater arsenic levels prior to the campaign had greater improvement in child height-for-age relative to areas with “safe” arsenic levels. Results are statistically significant for children from educated households but not for children from uneducated households.