An interesting NOAA study making it’s way round the web this morning discusses how heat stress from a warming climate is decreasing human work productivity. It’s both a surprising, and obvious, result of climate change. Everyone knows heat is a burden, but really, it’s the humidity that brings you do your knees. According to the report, the world’s “working capacity” has already observed a 10% reduction.
“By 2050, a combination of rising heat and humidity is likely to cut the world’s labor capacity to 80 percent during summer months — twice the effect observed today.
“The planet will start experiencing heat stress unlike anything experienced today,” said study co-author Ron Stouffer, a climate modeler at NOAA’s Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory. “The world is entering a very different environment, and the impact of that on labor will be significant.”
Read the full story at Climate Central.
In Minnesota, we are famous for our harsh winters, not our summers. But the humidity here, like so many other places, is brutal in the summer, and increasingly unbearable in recent years. High rainfall amounts in the US and all that sweating corn in Minnesota are combining with the global rising temperatures. And it’s only going to continue to make Minnesota more and more humid, and as a result, less and less productive.