Place Based Subsidies are the Wrong Way to Adapt to Climate Change
The NY Times wrestles with whether tax payers should be paying for the protection of coastal Queens, NY. I agree with Mr. Goldstein;
Eric A. Goldstein, a senior lawyer at the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental advocacy group, said he was sympathetic to Broad Channel and understood why residents have been lobbying hard for aid.
“The problem is, they have picked a spectacularly beautiful but increasingly impractical and dangerous place to live,” Mr. Goldstein said.
“If sea levels rise and storm-level projections are accurate, this community may be surviving on borrowed time,” he said. He added that the city faced hard questions, one being: “How much sense does it make to keep reinvesting taxpayer dollars in a community that is directly in harm’s way?”
As I stated in Climatopolis, communities should use their own $ to defend themselves. Money doesn’t grow on trees and cities face balanced budget conditions. Do coastal communities merit a subsidy to take gambles? Read up on moral hazard! To pay for these subsidies will require that somebody else’s taxes will have to go up.
Matthew E. Kahn is a Professor at the UCLA Institute of the Environment, the Department of Economics, and the Department of Public Policy. He is a research associate at t…READ more