Voluntary Exposure Benefits and the Costs of Climate Change
Resources for the Future Discussion Paper 15-19-REV2
58 Pages Posted: 26 Jun 2015 Last revised: 30 Dec 2017
Date Written: September 14, 2017
We identify behavioral responses, defined as “voluntary exposure benefits,” that have the potential to offset measured costs of climate change. We quantify these responses for the transportation sector. We find warmer temperatures and reduced snowfall are associated with an increase in fatal accidents. While the application of these results to climate predictions suggests that weather patterns for the end of the century would lead to 381 additional fatalities per year, the associated welfare losses are almost completely offset by voluntary exposure benefits from increased traveling. Our results motivate carefully examining behavioral mechanisms to accurately estimate the welfare effects of climate change.
Keywords: Traffic Accidents, Exposure, Climate Change
JEL Classification: Q58, Q52, H23, R41
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation