With the rising costs of natural disasters, a new debate has come to fruition. There is not enough money to protect every coastal community from the effects of global warming, so how do we decide what communities to protect first? Due to increased flooding, coastal areas will require a significant amount of spending to protect against rising sea levels and future storms, policymakers and scientists say.
If the government provides sea walls for all coastal cities with more than 25,000 residents, the cost will be at least $42 billion by 2040, according to estimates from the Center for Climate Integrity. With the price projecting to be enormous, many places may not be protected. This research doesn't include renovating storm and drinking water infrastructure, which will increase the cost. If sea walls are provided for communities that contain smaller than 25,000 residents, the cost increases to $400 billion combined.
The Trump administration is expected to release details on two programs to fund disaster mitigation. The Trump administration is also working with $16 billion in grants from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) they received in 2018. The money is expected to help protect communities against future natural disasters. With the funding not expected to be enough to help every community, experts are trying propose different ways to use the money in the communities it can help the most.