by: Elizabeth Balboa, Benzinga Staff Writer
But a recent study exploring the aggregate consequences of climate change has now predicted the total economic impact calculated in gross domestic product. Researchers gauged the effects of temperature, precipitation and carbon dioxide changes on county agriculture, energy, labor, crime and mortality.
In the scholars’ model, the value of damage increased quadratically, with 1-degree Celsius pops correlating with 1.2-percent losses in GDP. They estimated that, by the 2080s, the U.S. could see net GDP loss of 0.7 percent per year with every 1-degree Fahrenheit increase.
High-heat Southern, Central and mid-Atlantic regions prone to the greatest damages could experience 10- to 20-percent gross county product losses, driven largely by a rise in projected heat wave deaths, energy costs for air conditioning, labor slowdown and destructive hurricanes.
While companies involved in cooling services, such as Johnson Controls International plc Ordinary Share JCI or Lennox International Inc. LII, may see regional benefits, those whose employees work primarily outdoors, such as construction or mining firms, may need to pay premiums to secure laborers for high-risk work.
However, the same industries may see opposite effects in the northern U.S., as rising temperatures diminish the damage inflicted by harsh winters. Communities in the Pacific Northwest, Great Lakes and New England regions are actually expected to celebrate net GCP gains from climate change.
“Importantly, risk is distributed unequally across locations, generating a large transfer of value northward and westward that increases economic inequality,” the report reads.
While some counties may see median GCP losses above 20 percent, others may see gains above 10 percent.
“Because losses are largest in regions that are already poorer on average, climate change tends to increase preexisting inequality in the United States,” the research concluded.
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