Temperature and the Allocation of Time: Implications for Climate Change
41 Pages Posted: 8 Feb 2010
Date Written: February 2010
In this paper we estimate the impacts of climate change on the allocation of time using econometric models that exploit plausibly exogenous variation in daily temperature over time within counties. We find large reductions in U.S. labor supply in industries with high exposure to climate and similarly large decreases in time allocated to outdoor leisure. We also find suggestive evidence of short-run adaptation through temporal substitutions and acclimatization. Given the industrial composition of the US, the net impacts on total employment are likely to be small, but significant changes in leisure time as well as large scale redistributions of income may be consequential. In developing countries, where the industrial base is more typically concentrated in climate-exposed industries and baseline temperatures are already warmer, employment impacts may be considerably larger.
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