Despite the president-elect's hard-line rhetoric on climate change, many are still hopeful that the climate regulation that is already in place is hard to reverse and the market force is shifting in favor of clean energy. With the decrease of clean energy price and increase of employment in the clean energy industry, many politicians from red states are behind legislation to support renewable energy.
To add another dimension to the issue of climate change, now, dozens of military leaders and defense experts are urging the newly elected president to view climate change as a national security threat. "They urge Trump to order the Pentagon to game out catastrophic climate scenarios, track trends in climate impacts and collaborate with civilian communities. Stresses from climate change can increase the likelihood of international or civil conflict, state failure, mass migration and instability in strategically significant areas around the world, the defense experts argue."
Many environmentalists are deeply fearful of the way Trump administration would deal with environmental, climate, and energy issues in the coming years. Many observers are pessimistic about the future of environmental and climate laws and even EPA under a Trump administration and a Republican-controlled congress.
Harvard law professor Jody Freeman, who specializes in environmental and energy laws, points out, "the picture is significantly more complicated, and markedly less bleak." Further, "While Trump may try to rescind a number of regulations, the process would be long, arduous and only partially successful. Moreover, any broad legislative attack on environmental statutes is unlikely to succeed without a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, which the Republicans do not have."
Flooding poses serious threats to communities. The economic damages incurred by floods have grown immensely over the past several decades in the U.S., especially in the coastal region due to a combination of intense coastal development and climate change impacts. The recent epic flood in Louisiana serves as a vivid reminder that a flood can turn out to be a monster destroying everything on its path.
Being faced with these serious challenges, one effective precautionary measure for coastal residents would be to purchase flood insurance. In reality, though, only a portion of these coastal residents who live in the imminent threats of floods have flood insurance. Naturally, we start to scratch our heads and wonder, "what drives people to buy flood insurance?"
Driven by this question, my co-authors and I analyzed the Gulf Coast Climate Change survey data merged with contextual data, and made several important findings on individual voluntary flood insurance purchase behaviors. The results are published in the journal: Water Research
These findings include:
1. Flood risks in FEMA flood map affect the voluntary purchase of flood insurance.
2. Voluntary behavior is influenced by perceptions of flood-related risks.
3. Intensity of the local flood events in the past affects the voluntary behavior.
4. Social factors especially income significantly affect the voluntary behavior.