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
by 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.
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