July 18, 2024, 10:49 am

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2019-07-03 22:17:28 BdST

Heat stress to guzzle output equal to 3.83m jobs in BD

Bangladesh is projected to lose productivity equivalent to 3.83 million full-time jobs in the year 2030 due to rise in heat stress caused by global warming, according to a latest report.

By 2030, the global productivity loss will be equivalent to 80 million full-time jobs, equivalent to economic loss of US$ 2,400 billion, it opined.

The report of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) - titled 'Working on a warmer planet: The impact of heat stress on labour productivity and decent work' - was launched on Monday.

The report showed the impact of heat stress on productivity and decent work for virtually all countries of the world.

It also presented innovative solutions based on social dialogues to promote occupational safety and health for the most vulnerable groups of workers.

Works in agriculture and construction sectors are assumed to be the worst affected by heat stress across the globe, including Bangladesh.

Bangladesh is also among the most vulnerable countries, like - Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, India and Pakistan, to productivity loss with high share of agricultural and/or construction employment as well as with its location within the tropical and subtropical latitudes.

The phenomenon of heat stress refers to heat received in excess of that which human body can tolerate without physiological impairment. It is one of the major consequences of global warming.

By 2030, the equivalent of more than 2.0 per cent of the total working hours is projected to be lost worldwide every year, either because it is too hot to work or because workers have to work at a slower pace.

The sector expected to be worst affected, globally, is agriculture. Some 940 million people around the world work in the agricultural sector.

It is projected to account for 60 per cent of global working hours lost due to heat stress by 2030. The percentage of working hours in agricultural sector in Bangladesh is estimated at 9.58 per cent.

The construction sector will be severely affected also with an estimated 19 per cent of global working hours lost, while the rate is 9.58 per cent for Bangladesh.

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have some of the world's highest ratios of migrant workers to total workforce. Such workers make up around 50 per cent of the population in Bahrain and Oman, and more than 80 per cent in Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), according to the ILO.

In the construction sector, more than 95 per cent of the workers are migrant workers from low-wage Asian countries, such as - Pakistan, India, the Philippines, Bangladesh and Nepal.

Other sectors especially at risk are - environmental goods and services, refuse collection, emergency, repair work, transport, tourism, sports and some forms of industrial work, according to the ILO report.

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