Depopulation Key To Reducing Damages In Disaster-Prone Areas

This column from The Wall Street Journal argues that the best way to prevent damages from natural disasters is not to fight carbon emissions, but to prevent people from living in disaster-prone areas.

"It has become more popular than ever to reside in low-lying, coastal areas that are particularly vulnerable to extreme weather. In Florida, more people live in Dade and Broward counties today than lived in all 109 coastal counties from Texas through Virginia in 1930. It's obvious that more damage will occur when many more people with much more wealth live in harm's way."

"No matter how you look at it, however, the prospect of $1 trillion of weather-related damage by 2040 is frightening. But it is just as frightening that we have developed a blinkered focus on reducing carbon emissions as a way to somehow stop the devastation of events like Hurricane Dean."

"Presumably, our goal is to help humans and the planet. Cutting carbon is a very poor way of doing that. If coastal populations kept increasing but we managed to halt climate warming, then research shows that there would still be a 500% increase in hurricane damage in 50 years' time. On the other hand, if we let climate warming continue but stopped more people from moving into harm's way, the increase in hurricane damage would be less than 10%."

*Editor's Note: This article will be available to non-subscribers of The Wall Street Journal for up to seven days.

Full Story: Storm Surge

Comments

Comments

Disaster Prone Areas

With a recent tornado in Brooklyn and flooding across the mid-west, it is just a matter of time before disastrous weather strikes Wall Street.

What will summer temperatures be like on Wall Street if we take this writer's advice and forget about controlling CO2 emissions?

Of course, the weather will be much more likely to kill people in Africa and Asia than people on Wall Street. Does the writer want to spend enough money to relocate billions of people who now live in Africa and Asia? Or does he think that we should just let the poor people of the world die off?

Charles Siegel

Preventing Disaster


"This column from The Wall Street Journal argues that the best way to prevent damages from natural disasters is not to fight carbon emissions, but to prevent people from living in disaster-prone areas."

Why not do both?

Consider the Source

Bjorn Lomborg...notorious shill for 'business as usual'.

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