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Climate change: Hurts the south, benefits Michigan ecomony

While global warming will have its greatest negative impact on poor and southern US counties, Michigan and other northern states could actually benefit from climate change. That's according to a recent study published in the journal, Science. 

Researchers calculated probable economic harms and benefits for more than 3,100 counties across the United States under different possible scenarios for worldwide emissions of heat-trapping gases while taking into account each county’s agriculture, energy and labor costs, coastal damage from rising seas, and crime and death statistics. Researchers then estimated the effect on average local income by the end of the century.

The study concluded that five of the 10 counties that would benefit financially the most from global warming are in the state of Michigan as the change in climate would boost the local economy. Results of the study found southern states will be hit the hardest.

"The south gets hammered and the north can actually benefit," said study lead author Solomon Hsiang, a University of California economist. "The south gets hammered primarily because it's super-hot already. It just so happens that the south is also poorer."

Critics have argued that it is difficult enough to predict the weather or climate over a week, much less global warming or cooling trends by the end of the century. However, economists and scientists who specialize in climate and disasters praised the study as groundbreaking.

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