Temperature, climate change, and fertility

A new GLO Discussion Paper finds that heat in the pre-conception period has detrimental impacts on fertility.

GLO Discussion Paper No. 896, 2021

Temperature, climate change, and fertility Download PDF
Hajdu, Tamás & Hajdu, Gábor

GLO Fellows Gábor Hajdu & Tamás Hajdu

Author Abstract: This chapter reviews the empirical literature on the impacts of temperature and climate change on human pregnancies. The focus is on the quasi-experimental studies that use panel data, apply a fixed effect approach, and exploit the random year-to-year fluctuation in temperature. The insights that emerge from the review highlight that exposure to heat in the pre-conception period has detrimental impacts on fertility. In addition, heat during pregnancy increases pregnancy losses, leads to a reduction in gestational length, and lowers birth weight. Despite the growing empirical evidence on the subject, understanding the relationship between temperature and pregnancy-related outcomes is far from perfect. Importantly, the potential impacts of climate change are rarely quantified. The chapter outlines directions for future research.

GLO Discussion Papers are research and policy papers of the GLO Network which are widely circulated to encourage discussion. Provided in cooperation with EconStor, a service of the ZBW – Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, GLO Discussion Papers are among others listed in RePEc (see IDEAS,  EconPapers)Complete list of all GLO DPs – downloadable for free.

The Global Labor Organization (GLO) is an independent, non-partisan and non-governmental organization that functions as an international network and virtual platform to stimulate global research, debate and collaboration.


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