Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Businesses Feel the Heat from Declining Labor Productivity

There have been several studies that show how a warming planet will decrease labor productivity. Diminished productivity has negative economic implications both for individual companies and the economy as a whole.

A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) study warned that climate change is likely to have a significant negative impact on productivity for the US workforce as a whole.

The NOAA study found the increasingly hot and wet climatic conditions have cut productivity rates by as much as 10 percent since the 1950s. The study also found that labor capacity losses could double by the 2050s.

The observation that a warming world will decrease productivity was reiterated in the recent Risky Business report.

According to a study titled, "The direct impact of climate change on regional labor productivity," lost production and other costs should be expected in a warmer world.

The heat associated with global climate change will have deleterious implications for millions of working people. As explained in the study climate change will decrease labor productivity in most regions. This is particularly true in the absence of mitigation efforts.

The study estimates that by the 2080s, the losses of population-based labor work capacity will range from 11 percent to 27 percent. This will increase costs as more hours will be required to achieve the same output. Additional costs will come from occupational and health interventions against heat exposure. The worst affects are expected to occur in Southeast Asia, Andean and Central America, and the Caribbean.

Hot weather also enables ozone and the formation of fine particulate matter pollution which can travel hundreds of miles. This not only diminishes productivity it contributes to morbidity and mortality.

Related Articles
Action on Climate Change a Cost Benefit Analysis
The Cost of Delaying Action to Stem Climate Change
Climate Change: Frequency, Costs and Mortality (World Meteorological Organisation)
Graphics - Cost of Delaying Action to Stem Climate Change
Economic Benefits of Combating Climate Change (IIED)
Economic Costs of Combating Climate Change (IPCC)
Reducing Fossil Fuel Use: The Longer We Wait the More it will Cost
Infographic - How Much Would it Cost to Go Green Globally?
Graphic - The Cost of Mitigating Climate Change
The Financial Costs of Biodiversity Loss
Extreme Weather and the Costs of Climate Change
Extreme Weather
The Costs of Global Warming
The Costs of Climate Change Related Flooding
Graphs - Global Cost of Flooding
The Costs of Flood Damage will Rise Along with Sea Levels
Balken Flooding and the Costs of Climate Change
Tornadoes and Floods Underscore the Costs of Global Warming
Floods in the Philippines Underscore the Deadly Toll from Climate Change
Hurricane Irene and the Staggering Costs of Climate Change
Extreme Weather Makes a Convincing Case for Climate Change

No comments: