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Extreme Weather Events, Mortality, and Migration

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  • Olivier Desch�nes

    (University of California, Santa Barbara, and NBER)

  • Enrico Moretti

    (University of California, Berkeley, and NBER)

Abstract

We estimate the effect of extreme weather on life expectancy in the United States. Using high-frequency data, we find that both extreme heat and cold result in immediate increases in mortality. The increase in mortality following extreme heat appears mostly driven by near-term displacement, while the increase in mortality following extreme cold is long lasting. We estimate that the number of annual deaths attributable to cold temperature is 0.8% of average annual deaths in our sample. The longevity gains associated with mobility from the Northeast to the Southwest account for 4% to 7% of the total gains in life expectancy experienced by the U.S. population over the past thirty years. Copyright by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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File URL: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/pdf/10.1162/rest.91.4.659
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Review of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 91 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 659-681

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:91:y:2009:i:4:p:659-681

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  1. Emily Oster, 2004. "Witchcraft, Weather and Economic Growth in Renaissance Europe," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(1), pages 215-228, Winter.
  2. Cutler, David & Lleras-Muney, Adriana & Deaton, Angus, 2006. "The Determinants of Mortality," Scholarly Articles 2640588, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Olivier Deschênes & Michael Greenstone, 2007. "Climate Change, Mortality, and Adaptation: Evidence from Annual Fluctuations in Weather in the US," Working Papers 0707, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research.
  4. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "Reversal of Fortune: Geography and Institutions in the Making of the Modern World Income Distribution," NBER Working Papers 8460, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Dora L. Costa, 2000. "Understanding Mid-Life and Older Age Mortality Declines: Evidence from Union Army Veterans," NBER Working Papers 8000, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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