Climate change in South Africa could cost up to 20% of GDP
The impact of climate change in South Africa can be seen in economic productivity, healthcare outcomes and labour availability – but what could it cost the population in the future, if left unchecked?
The CMCC Foundation and RFF-CMCC European Institute on Economics and the Environment (EIEE) and Athens University of Economics and Business, recently published in their investigation into how climate change could impact the GDP of South Africa.
Temperature rises across the globe have created shifting conditions for food security, with the tropical rain belt set to move drastically by 2100 and hydropower dams in Brazil creating difficulties for Indigenous groups who rely on fishing patterns. The changing climate has always been a crucial problem for communities attempting to feed themselves and upkeep their livelihoods.
But what about labour productivity itself?
Absent of the agricultural or livelihood insinuation, how could the fluctuating atmosphere impact the capacity of people to work at all?
The research finds that by 2100, the wage gap between high-skilled and low-skilled labour will be reduced. The lowest skilled labour will begin to receive more appropriate wages. This will be a consequence of the decrease in the relative availability of low-skilled to high-skilled labour due to the rising temperature, which increases the scarcity of such workers – and their economic value.
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