Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2192245
 
 

References (36)



 
 

Citations (1)



 
 

Footnotes (41)



 


 



Adapting to Climate Change: The Remarkable Decline in the U.S. Temperature-Mortality Relationship Over the 20th Century


Alan I. Barreca


Tulane University

Karen Clay


Carnegie Mellon University - H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management

Olivier Deschenes


University of California, Santa Barbara - College of Letters & Science - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Michael Greenstone


University of Chicago - Department of Economics; Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Joseph S. Shapiro


Yale University, Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

January 10, 2015

MIT Department of Economics Working Paper No. 12-29

Abstract:     
A critical part of adapting to the higher temperatures that climate change brings will be the deployment of existing technologies to new sectors and regions. This paper examines the evolution of the temperature-mortality relationship over the course of the entire 20th century in the United States both for its own interest but also to identify potentially useful adaptations that may be useful in the coming decades. There are three primary findings. First, the mortality impact of days with a mean temperature exceeding 80° F has declined by about 70%. Almost the entire decline occurred after 1960. There are about 14,000 fewer fatalities annually than if the pre-1960 impacts of high temperature on mortality still prevailed. Second, the diffusion of residential air conditioning can explain essentially the entire decline in hot day related fatalities. Third, using Dubin-McFadden’s discrete-continuous model, we estimate that the present value of US consumer surplus from the introduction of residential air conditioning (AC) in 1960 ranges from $83 to $186 billion ($2012) with a 5% discount rate. The monetized value of the mortality reductions on high temperature days due to AC accounts for a substantial fraction of these welfare gains.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 67

Keywords: climate change, health, adaptation, extreme temperature, air conditioning, mortality

JEL Classification: I10, I12, I18, Q54, N31


Open PDF in Browser Download This Paper

Date posted: December 21, 2012 ; Last revised: January 16, 2015

Suggested Citation

Barreca, Alan I. and Clay, Karen and Deschenes, Olivier and Greenstone, Michael and Shapiro, Joseph S., Adapting to Climate Change: The Remarkable Decline in the U.S. Temperature-Mortality Relationship Over the 20th Century (January 10, 2015). MIT Department of Economics Working Paper No. 12-29. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2192245 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2192245

Contact Information

Alan I. Barreca
Tulane University ( email )
6329 Freret Street
New Orleans, LA 70118
United States
Karen B. Clay
Carnegie Mellon University - H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management ( email )
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States
Olivier Deschenes
University of California, Santa Barbara - College of Letters & Science - Department of Economics ( email )
Santa Barbara, CA 93106
United States
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) ( email )
P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany
Michael Greenstone (Contact Author)
University of Chicago - Department of Economics ( email )
1126 East 59th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Department of Economics ( email )
50 Memorial Drive
E52-391
Cambridge, MA 02142
United States
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Joseph S. Shapiro
Yale University, Department of Economics ( email )
37 Hillhouse Ave, Room 34
New Haven, CT 06510
United States
203-432-5075 (Phone)
203-432-6323 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://economics.yale.edu/people/joseph-s-shapiro
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Feedback to SSRN


Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 2,895
Downloads: 577
Download Rank: 27,301
References:  36
Citations:  1
Footnotes:  41

© 2015 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo2 in 0.422 seconds