We’ve seen the impacts of climate change on the earth and in communities ravaged by intense weather events. Hurricanes, heavy precipitation, excessive heat and strong winds. The economic damage is evident when neighborhoods must be rebuilt and the country is charged with rebuilding damaged roadways and other public venues, but this isn’t the extent of the cost of climate change. It extends beyond the billions of dollars spent in rescue, emergency aid and rebuilding efforts.
The impact of temperature increases
Stanford and UC Berkeley analysts have composed a study that looks backward through fifty years of history to assess how rising temperatures affect the economy. The study took into account one hundred and sixty-six countries across the globe. The studies show that countries with a consistent temperature average of fifty-five degrees Fahrenheit were the most productive. Those with cooler averages there is a notable increase in productivity but higher average temperatures reflect a consistent decrease in economic productivity. Each degree correlates to a significant drop in performance.
What this holds for the future with climate change
This data suggests that further average temperature increases could cause a worsening of the economic conditions for countries that are the most susceptible. Established wealthy nations from naturally cooler climates are not as likely to see much change in their economic status based on these findings, but regions in the Americas and South African countries could see further economic decline. More research into the topic is needed to fully understand the dynamics in play, but the figures are consistent on a global level so it is assumed that there are correlations between climate and productivity. These findings add an incentive to find ways to reduce carbon emissions in all sectors of society. From private citizens to large corporations, greater environmental responsibility is needed to slow the forward progression of the changes in our atmosphere. There is a lot at state and the U.N. climate talks are on the horizon.
The cost of climate change and its equivalent
Yes, there is a tremendous cost associated with climate change, but it is more catastrophic that the cost of inaction is at the root of the problem. Societies continue doing business as usual without taking the needed steps to lessen the carbon footprints that they are leaving behind them. From all indications, it is the indifference to the issue that is the overriding issue at this time.