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Climatic Conditions and Productivity: An Impact Evaluation in Pre-industrial England

Stéphane Auray, Aurélien Eyquem and Frédéric Jouneau-Sion
Annals of Economics and Statistics
No. 121/122 (June 2016), pp. 261-277
Published by: GENES on behalf of ADRES
DOI: 10.15609/annaeconstat2009.121-122.261
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.15609/annaeconstat2009.121-122.261
Page Count: 17
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Climatic Conditions and Productivity: An Impact Evaluation in Pre-industrial England
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Abstract

In this paper, we bridge economic data and climatic time series to assess the vulnerability of a pre-industrial economy to changes in climatic conditions. We propose an economic model to extract a measure of total productivity from English data (real wages and land rents) in the pre-industrial period. This measure of total productivity is then related to temperatures and precipitations. We find that lower (respectively higher) precipitations (resp. temperatures) enhance productivity. Furthermore, temperatures also have non-linear effects on productivity: large temperature variations lower productivity.We perform counterfactual exercises and quantify the effects of large increases in temperatures on productivity, GDP and welfare. JEL: C22, N13, O41, O47, Q54. / KEY WORDS: Climatic Conditions, TFP Shocks, Real Wages, Real Rents.

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