Global warming = economic toll, do you believe in climate change now?

A fisherman’s hut on a seasonally flooded lake, spanning as far as the eye can see. Sylhet district, Bangladesh, 2012. Courtesy of Amir Jina. 

By Jason Middleton

In June 2017, the Climate Impact Lab published a study detailing which counties in the United States would be most widely affected by global temperature rise.

And the findings — yes, using a heat map — showed that the southeastern United States, and the lower Midwest, would be hardest hit by climate change. Which seems ironic if you indulge the stereotype that those are precisely the areas of the country, culturally, that tend to deny climate change is “a thing.”

This week on Techonomics, in segment one, we speak with a co-author of the study, “Study finds climate change damages U.S. economy, increases inequality.”

We wanted to do a six-month checkup with Amir Jina, assistant professor at the Harris School of Public Policy Studies and environmental and development economist. We pose the questions: Has the irrefutable data changed opinions on climate change? Or has it (at least) created any converts?

The elegant formula the researchers uncovered is copy/paste if you want to use it at a dinner party or any conversation, really:

  • The U.S. will face a 1.2 percent drop in gross domestic product, the value of goods produced and services rendered in the country, for every 1 degree Celsius (that’s 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) increase in temperature.

Then, in segment two, we look at one of the bleakest, most mundane and, somehow still useless, business practices — annual reviews from your boss.

We expand past the futility of the exercise and dive into how good people are twisted into being bad managers because of a corporate culture that doesn’t reward “other” thinking – but self-advancement at the expense of others.

We chat with, UCLA Prof. Samuel Culbert, who has a new book about the issue, “Good People, Bad Managers: How Work Culture Corrupts Good Intentions.”

Finally, in segment three, we dive into friend-of-the-show Common Sense Media’s new partnership that hopes to guide parents and younger people away from addictive technologies, and into healthier uses of the digital revolution.

The Truth About Tech campaign is part of the Center for Humane Technology. The effort is being led by former engineers at Google, Facebook and others!

Please click on any of the above links for more information. Visit our show page to view all our podcasts (see this week’s segments mentioned in the article below). You can follow our Facebook page or follow me on Twitter for additional updates!

Have great weeks, everybody!


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