The effects of prenatal exposure to temperature extremes on birth outcomes: the case of China uri icon

abstract

  • This paper investigates the effects of prenatal exposure to extreme temperatures on birth outcomes-specifically, the log of birth weight and an indicator for low birth weight-using a nationally representative dataset on rural China. During the time period we examine (1991-2000), indoor air conditioning was not widely available and migration was limited, allowing us to address identification issues endemic in the climate change literature related to adaptation and location sorting. We find substantial heterogeneity in the effects of extreme temperature exposure on birth outcomes. In particular, prenatal exposure to heat waves has stronger negative effects than exposure to cold spells on surviving births.

publication date

  • 2020
  • 2020