Why Live in the Cold: Climate v. Productivity

I have always hated the long, cold and snowy New England winters and it seems that most of the people who live here do as well. I spent a lot of time wondering why then do people actually stay here generation after generation. It seems that people complain all year about the climate but they refuse to move. Why stay in the North when you could instead enjoy the beautiful climate of the sunbelt?

I have a theory. People who live in areas with better weather get less done. Would you rather work harder and hope the boss notices in time for your performance review or take a vacation day and go to the beach? If you said that you would pack up and head to the beach I will give you some more information. It is January and you live in Massachusetts. Sorry, it looks like you will be clocking some extra hours at work. For those of you who live in Florida, enjoy the sun!

Now in case you don't believe me, here are some interesting statistical maps that I found.

This one is a map of states ranked by per capita income. Dark green states are those with the highest income levels. Notice that with the exception of California, most of these states are concentrated in the North.


This is a map of plant hardiness zones, which are determined by temperature ranges. Warmer orange colors indicate warmer climates while cooler blue and purple colors indicate colder climates.

Now compare both of the maps and notice that there is a general relationship between dark green states from map number one and colder states from map two.