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Rainy days devastate the economy – and climate change will make it worse

Rainy days devastate the economy – and climate change will make it worse

City of Manchester skyline under a stormy sky. Greater Manchester, North West England. UK.

City of Manchester skyline under a stormy sky. Greater Manchester, North West England. UK.

Research by Getty found that rain can seriously impact economic performance.

Rainy days don’t just spoil people’s picnic plans, they put a serious dent in economic growth, new research has shown.

That’s a serious concern, as Many regions are expected to see an increase in rainfall due to climate change.Warming air can retain more water vapour, which eventually turns to rain.

Researchers at the University of Potsdam analyzed economic statistics from 1,500 regions over 40-years. They warned that if rainfall intensifiesIt will cause harm to the global economy.

The researchers warn that increasing rainfall could be worse for the world’s economy than extreme weather.

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Anders Levermann of the Potsdam Institute’s Complexity Science Domain stated: “Our study reveals it’s precisely global warming’s fingerprint in daily rainfall that has hefty economic impacts that have not yet been accounted but are highly pertinent.”

“A closer look at the short-term scales rather than the annual averages helps us understand what’s happening: it’s the daily rain which poses the threat.

“It’s rather the climate shocks from weather extremes that threaten our way of life than the gradual changes.

“By destabilising our climate we harm our economies. We must ensure that the burning of fossil fuels doesn’t destabilize our societies.

The researchers examined data from sub-national economic outputs for 1,554 regions around the world during the period 1979-2019.

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The scientists combined these with high resolution rainfall data – a highly local phenomenon – and revealed the new insights.

Leonie Wenz, of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, (PIK), stated that: “This is all about prosperity, and ultimately people’s jobs. 

“Economies across the world are slowed down by more wet days and extreme daily rainfall – an important insight that adds to our growing understanding of the true costs of climate change.”

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“Macro-economic assessments of climate impacts have so far focused mostly on temperature and considered – if at all – changes in rainfall only across longer time scales such as years or months, thus missing the complete picture.”

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Wenz stated that while more annual rainfall is generally good news for economies, especially those dependent on agriculture, the question is how the rain is distributed over the years.

“Intensified daily rainfall turns out to be bad, especially for wealthy, industrialised countries like the US, Japan, or Germany.”

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