Economic assessment of recent European heatwaves and climate change projected impacts
with Annkatrin Burgstall, Ana Casanueva, Andreas D. Flouris, Lars Nybo and Gabriele Standardi. Submitted.
The biophysical impact of extreme temperatures on the performance of workers is manifested by altering human physiology and cognition processes. This has a negative effect on the work capacity of the labour force, leading to temporarily lower labour productivity and economic output. Inspired by the emerging literature on bottom-up assessments of climate risks, this paper proposes a method that estimates, upon leveraging local-level heat stress impacts, the economy-wide cost of heatwaves by integrating regional- and sector-specific productivity losses into a regionalised general equilibrium model, thus enabling for market adaptation mechanisms. We study the most representative and analyse the implications of climate change to this area by combining features a very detailed spatial and temporal precision: i) 274 regions (EU+EFTA countries) simultaneously analysed; ii) Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT) indicator retrieved every hour; iii) economic sectors classified according to their different heat exposure (indoor/ outdoor activities and metabolic intensity load); iv) different heat-exposure functions analysed; v) two climate scenarios compared and; vi) average estimate costs for the period 2035-2064 produced. The integrated modelling tool proposed here can also help to assess the implementation of regional-sectoral occupational health and adaptation plans at the workplace.