Climate fluctuations and geopolitical issues are challenging an already struggling semiconductor supply chain, but better days may lie ahead.

John Edwards, Technology Journalist & Author

September 15, 2022

1 Min Read
scene of a landscape that is dried out from lack of water

The global chip shortage is continuing to hamper enterprises worldwide, ranging from vehicle manufacturers to mobile phone makers, as well as other consumer, business, and industrial producers. Detrimental climate conditions are now contributing to a struggling supply chain that has already weathered its share of pandemics, military actions, and economic turmoil.

The global chip shortage issue is complex, with multiple dimensions, says Elias Eliadis, senior director, strategy and transactions, with business consulting services provider EY. "Most industry experts would agree that climate change has an effect on chip production, as it requires a highly controlled manufacturing environment, a reliable supply of ultrapure water (UPW), and stable environmental conditions, such as temperature and humidity."

Climate conditions can affect chip production and distribution in multiple ways. "Water quality issues, or shortages, can impact manufacturing yields and disrupt factory operations," Eliadis says. Cold weather can cause power supply outages or delay the transportation of raw materials and finished goods. "Floods can cause fab shutdowns [with] an extended impact on production output," he adds.

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About the Author(s)

John Edwards

Technology Journalist & Author

John Edwards is a veteran business technology journalist. His work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and numerous business and technology publications, including Computerworld, CFO Magazine, IBM Data Management Magazine, RFID Journal, and Electronic Design. He has also written columns for The Economist's Business Intelligence Unit and PricewaterhouseCoopers' Communications Direct. John has authored several books on business technology topics. His work began appearing online as early as 1983. Throughout the 1980s and 90s, he wrote daily news and feature articles for both the CompuServe and Prodigy online services. His "Behind the Screens" commentaries made him the world's first known professional blogger.

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